During World War II, four Britons tunnel out of a German POW camp. One is killed, two are recaptured and one escapes. Scottish Corporal Nicholas McGrade, the lone escapee, is a slacker and ...
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The prisoners in Colditz Castle make many attempts to escape captivity from the arrival of the first British prisoners after Dunkirk in 1940 until the liberation of the castle by the ... See full summary »
During World War II, four Britons tunnel out of a German POW camp. One is killed, two are recaptured and one escapes. Scottish Corporal Nicholas McGrade, the lone escapee, is a slacker and reluctant soldier, but is coerced into the secret MI9 Unit and participates in the facilitation of other escapes. Wills and Jack Rose, the two escapees who were recaptured, are transferred to Colditz, a medieval castle in Saxony which has been refitted as an escape-proof, high security institution to house recitative prisoners who repeatedly attempt to escape. At Rose's request, McGrade looks up Rose's girlfriend in Britain only to find out he is falling in love with her. When the faithful Lizzie rejects the advances of the smitten McGrade, he uses his influence to fake Jack's death so as to clear any obstacles to Lizzie.Written by
One of the reasons Colditz was suitable to be refitted as a POW camp was that it was built on an outcropping of solid rock, making tunneling almost impossible. After serving as a general POW camp in 1939, it was later converted into a high security camp for recidivist escapees, the only amp in which guards outnumbered prisoners, the majority of the which were initially British, French, Poles, and Dutch. All in all, 130 prisoners escaped the grounds but depending on the source referenced, only 30, 31, or 32 of these were ultimately "home runs." See more »
When Jack, Tom and Nicholas are attempting to cross the border into Switzerland, the Hitlerjugend boy addresses a German with "Leutnant", though the man addressed is clothed as an ordinary Schütze, a private. See more »
[Rhetorically, after his lecture on Trotsky is interrupted by the would-be escapees]
Don't you think this is a little bit childish?
This pathetic schoolboy obsession with escaping!
Well, if you're too yellow to bother, it's your concern.
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A dynamical mixture of an escape action drama and a melodramatic love story
I enjoyed watching the two part television series about the Colditz Castle even though I have known better escape movies such as "Papillon" or "The Shawshank Redemption" and even though the melodramatic love and treachery stories were rather predictable and some historical details had not been taken into consideration. There were also some things that I would have liked to see further developed such as the escape at the beginning of the movie, the death of the electrician and the fate of Sawyer but these things are only details.
I think that this movie got too many severe reviews on this side as the actors do some great efforts and the movie succeeds to keep the pace and attention quite high over more than three hours. I liked the fact that the plot spent some time on developing the different characters and the human conflicts which gave a philosophical and moral twist to the movie and treated topics such as desperation, drug abuse, treachery, bribery, love, dreams and freedom. The characters were authentic and diversified. The escape plans were mostly original and quite entertaining and it was good to see that an equal time was spent on the escape story and on the complex love story itself. That's why this movie was rather diversified and mixed action and drama passages with more romantic passages. I think that this dynamical mixture is one of the main factors that carried this good movie on.
In the end, if you like historical movies about the world wars or complex escape stories, you might pretty much like this film even if it is not a highlight of the genre. You will though get a well done and very entertaining movie that will make you think and learn a lot about history and life.
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