After settling his differences with a Japanese P.O.W. camp commander, a British Colonel co-operates to oversee his men's construction of a railway bridge for their captors, while oblivious to a plan by the Allies to destroy it.
Due to his knowledge of the native Bedouin tribes, British Lieutenant T.E. Lawrence is sent to Arabia to find Prince Faisal and serve as a liaison between the Arabs and the British in their fight against the Turks. With the aid of native Sherif Ali, Lawrence rebels against the orders of his superior officer and strikes out on a daring camel journey across the harsh desert to attack a well-guarded Turkish port.Written by
While filming, Peter O'Toole bonded with co-star Omar Sharif. Recalls Sharif, "Peter and I were like brothers immediately. He said to me, 'Your name is not Omar Sharif - no one is called Omar Sharif. Your real name is probably Freddy something!' And for the rest of the film and the rest of our lives, he's never called me Omar. He calls me Freddy." See more »
General Sir Edmund Allenby (promoted to Field Marshal in 1919) is characterized in the film as being cynical, manipulative, obstructive, and dismissive of Lawrence and his Arab allies, and come into conflict with them several times. However, there is significant evidence that Allenby and Lawrence enjoyed working with one another and had a good relationship that stretched into the post-war period. Allenby even endorsed Lawrence's book, "Seven Pillars of Wisdom," while Lawrence remembered him fondly as "great." Allenby also appeared to respect the Arabs working alongside him, as evinced by his congratulating Prince Faisal on the "great achievement" of his "gallant troops." See more »
Originally released at 222 minutes. Shortly after its premiere, David Lean, reportedly under the orders of producer Sam Spiegel, cut 20 minutes from the film. The 1971 re-release cut the film further to 187 minutes. The film was restored in 1988 at 216 minutes. This version, supervised by Lean, was advertised as a Director's Cut. See more »
Did you know that Cary Grant had been approached to play it? Yes, as well as Albert Finney and that made a lot more sense but it was Albert Finney who said, have you considered Peter O'Toole? Who? - Yes, I love that story. It goes to prove that certain things are meant to happen. I'm sorry if I'm going on about it. But I saw Lawrence Of Arabia for the nth time in a 70mm print in a crowded theater and what came across as the one major reason this film will be relevant forever is Peter O'Toole. His performance is timeless because it is unique. Cinematic and theatrical but always true. David Lean brilliantly created a sense of intimacy in O'Toole's eyes within the vast, arid landscape. I know the film has its detractors. I heard once director Michael Apted call it a "silly movie" Wow, I had Michael Apted's quote in my mind when I saw the film last and for the life of me, I don't know what he meant. I love this film.
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