Something I Never Understood in 'The Great Escape'

Discussion in 'Visual Arts' started by Wildest cat from montana, Mar 22, 2024.

  1. Wildest cat from montana

    Wildest cat from montana Humble Reader Thread Starter

    Location:
    ontario canada
    I'll say this about McQueen in ' The Great Escape' :
    Everybody else in the cast looks like British and American servicemen. McQueen looks like exactly what he was - a 60s movie star.
     
    Dude111 likes this.
  2. shokhead

    shokhead Head shok and you still don't what it is. HA!

    Location:
    SoCal, Long Beach
    Well it is a movie vs a Doc.
     
  3. Jeff Kent

    Jeff Kent Forum Resident

    Location:
    Mt. Kisco, NY
    Was Stalag 17 the escape that was mentioned in Apple TV's Warriors of the Air?
     
  4. fogalu

    fogalu There is only one Beethoven

    Location:
    Killarney, Ireland
    "Greenlit" is the right word!
     
  5. Wildest cat from montana

    Wildest cat from montana Humble Reader Thread Starter

    Location:
    ontario canada
    There would be tons of dirt to dispose of.
     
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  6. misterjones

    misterjones Smarter than the average bear.

    Location:
    New York, NY
    I'm currently reading Paul Brickhill's book and finding the comparisons to the film interesting. The upshot of the book (so far) seems to be that the idea that there would be more than one tunnel essentially was inconceivable to the Germans. For example, when the Germans saw how much lumber had been used to shore up the tunnel - apparently they only had one person willing/able to go into the tunnel to take a look at it - they assumed it must have been equivalent to the amount missing from the camp. There was no precise tunnel inventory. It was essentially blown-up (and not expertly). The German's also seemed to be more focused on how to prevent another dig rather than spot a parallel one. They decided to keep tabs on the camp's loose lumber, but not before more was taken and hidden by the prisoners. Had the Gestapo been in charge of the camps instead of the Luftwaffe, I suspect the prison guards would have been much more ruthless and detailed in their work. In large part, it seems like the Germans in the camp were just marking time until the war was over.
     
  7. Jimmy B.

    Jimmy B. Be yourself or don't bother. Anti-fascism.

    Location:
    .
  8. Jack Lord

    Jack Lord Forum Resident

    Location:
    Washington, DC
    Which is why he was there- to appeal to the American market. And it worked.

    The reality was the American POWs were transferred before the escape ensued. None the less, a great movie.
     
  9. Quadboy

    Quadboy Forum Resident

    Location:
    Leeds,England
    Watched it again on TV a few days ago.
    Sloppy that when Steve is being chased on the bike through the town and he goes across a narrow foot bridge and across fields ..... a chasing bike with sidecar crashes into the entrance to the bridge as it's too wide to fit on ...... it then cuts to other bikes with sidecars chasing closely behind him on the field!
     
  10. John Harchar

    John Harchar Forum Resident

    Location:
    New Jersey
    At least they properly edited the scene where Hilts steals the bike with the wire on the road from a German soldier played by…Steve McQueen!
     
  11. Myke

    Myke Trying Not To Spook The Horse

    I have the MGM as part of a 4 film collection, and I'd agree if I ever reached for a physical disc, which I've rarely done in nearly 4 years ( it seems like my entire collection is on streaming via a Roku stick my son gifted me back then ).
     
  12. George Segal’s fine grooming was a plot point for that movie. He was the only prisoner looking that good.
     
  13. lazydawg58

    lazydawg58 Know enough to know how much I don't know

    Location:
    Lillington NC
    I use to have a project I would do most years when I taught 8th grade. It involved students completing an oral history interview with a relative, family friend, or neighbor. They could do a video, written document or audio interview, and I got some really good work out of them over the years. We entered some of the better ones in contests and donated them to the state archives to be preserved. One of the best was a video interview with a WWII veteran who had been a prisoner of war in Germany. It's been a while since I watched it but as best I remember he talked about being cautious about possible moles, that a major effort was made to identify them if they existed. In particular there was one guy they suspected. They played a lot of games, poker possibly, but it might have been something else. And they kept a running tab for everyone. The vet that was interviewed said that he had ended up on the plus side with several others and they had all gotten his address with the understanding that the debt would be paid if they ever made it home. For what it's worth each of the dozen or so men that owed him, with the exception of the one they thought might have been a mole, eventually sent him what they owed.

    I'm not sure that tells us much, but I found it interesting. Many years after the interview I found the old VHS tape in my closet and had it converted to DVD. I gave a copy to the father of the student that did the interview and a copy to the niece of the veteran. Both greatly appreciated it.
     
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  14. PhilBorder

    PhilBorder Senior Member

    Location:
    Sheboygan, WI
    Also, they never showed McQueen's first successful breakout and intentional recapture so he could provide intel. That would have given viewers a better idea what they were up against outside the camp.

    And when McQueen was released from the cooler he seemed tanned and relaxed, like a vacation for him

    Or when the prisoners staged a huge patriotic event with homemade alcohol, no guards around. Those guys were remarkably unsupervised.

    For a 3 hour movie there's a lot of 'talk' about the plan, and not enough action. Entertaining but only a step up from Hogan's Heroes
     
  15. Wildest cat from montana

    Wildest cat from montana Humble Reader Thread Starter

    Location:
    ontario canada
    That's a stupid scene really. Three hundred guys milling around and not a guard in sight.
    And some of them are staggering like they're pissed out of their gourds. How much of this moonshine did they have?
     
  16. PhilBorder

    PhilBorder Senior Member

    Location:
    Sheboygan, WI
    As a general creative principal, one should not cast Steve McQueen in a movie and have him play the flute.
     
  17. dance_hall_keeper

    dance_hall_keeper Forum Resident

    “Loosely based on a true story and adapted for the big screen to suit their needs.”.
     
  18. The Panda

    The Panda Forum Mutant

    Location:
    Marple, PA, USA
    Just like in corporate america. When they found the tunnel, it was 'ok, nothing to see here, everything under control' They just wanted to believe everything was cool.
     
  19. Raf

    Raf Senior Member

    Location:
    Toronto, Ontario
    [​IMG]
     
    Rocker likes this.
  20. PhilBorder

    PhilBorder Senior Member

    Location:
    Sheboygan, WI
    Or that Steve's beard never grew in the cooler.

    That theme song is way too jaunty for the story too. And just weird in some instances like when David McCallum meets his demise at the railway station, and then the following cut to a transitional scene featuring the toodlin' music.

    It's an enjoyable film, especially the last hour. But they needed to whack this down by 20 minutes or so. It would have been a tauter and better.
     
    misterjones likes this.
  21. misterjones

    misterjones Smarter than the average bear.

    Location:
    New York, NY
    I say it should be longer. Not the Clavell movie version, but the book would make great 10-hour (or so) mini-series. There was a lot more to the prisoners' activities than the primary escape.
     
  22. Wildest cat from montana

    Wildest cat from montana Humble Reader Thread Starter

    Location:
    ontario canada
    I disagree about the theme song music.
    It's used throughout the movie in different ways.
     
  23. PhilBorder

    PhilBorder Senior Member

    Location:
    Sheboygan, WI
    I'm going to pick my battles here, but will say the music sounds sort of 'Teutonic' to me. So a subtle ironic poke at the obtusely triumphant Nazi sensibility? Except the movie isn't that subtle, so probably not.
     
  24. alexpop

    alexpop Power pop + other bad habits....

    Gordon Jackson about to go on the bus. :shake:
     
  25. alexpop

    alexpop Power pop + other bad habits....

    Film?
    McCartney based on Band On The Run.
     

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