The Great Escape

The Great Escape is a definitive war classic. The film based on the true story about a group of American/British P.O.Ws who found a way to escape the Stalag Luft III prison. Though I say it’s based on a true story, not all the events in the film are true and many of the characters are indeed fictitious. But this film captured the hearts of millions as Steven McQueen and Richard Attenborough take the helm in what is, the daring Great Escape.

The film is set in Stalag Luft III, a notorious (notorious for two prisoner escapes) P.O.W camp. It starts of introducing many characters such as Roger Bartlett (Richard Attenborough),  Virgil Hilts (Steve McQueen), Danny Velinski (Charles Bronson), Bob Hendley (James Garner) as well as more.

The camp commandant states at the beginning of the film that ‘there will be no escapes from this camp’. We learn prior to this that the men in the camp are notorious for escaping. The viewers become accustomed to this, as the minute the men have reached the camp, we see several escape attempts.  Soon after, Roger Bartlett arrives, known as ‘Big X’,  the leader of the escapists, and comes up with the plan that will lead to the Great Escape. The greatest escape attempt ever accomplished with 250 men. But do they succeed? Well, you’ll have to find out for yourself.

The film revolves around the large cast of big name actors. The characters are all likable: Hilts being the rebel, Bartlett being the big leader and Hendley being the suave gentleman. This makes film more watchable by all age groups as we see the heros trying to escape the villainous Nazis. There are comedy moments involving the actors which proves for an entertaining watch.

The Nazis, as per usual, are the villains but I would have expected them to be more evil. I don’t really know much about P.O.W camps but I would have expected them to be more harsh on their enemies. But I guess if you put that element in, the film would be more darker than jovial as it is for the most part. And that wouldn’t appeal to the generations of children who grew up watching McQueen and Attenborough taking on the Nazis.

The film is also lit up by the great Elmer Bernstein theme which I’m sure everyone will recognise. It had the mix of the military/army feel as well as a happy feeling.

I really enjoyed this film and though I felt it was a little slow to take off, the film comes into it’s own as the great plan also comes together. With great characters, story and World War Two pizzaz, this is a classic that shouldn’t be missed.

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Exit through the Gift Shop

Exit through the Gift Shop is a documentary, giving the viewers and insight into the underground world of street art. Though it vividly shows street artists working in the streets, scaling buildings to acquire the perfect position and occasionally running away from the police, it is an entirely different film that has even been remarked as a ‘hoax’ by some. Poster

Directed by the elusive street artist, Banksy, the documentary follows Thierry Guetta, a persistent French man who resides in Los Angeles, documenting everything that moves with his camera. This nature of his plunges him into the world of street art, in which he films many artists including Shepard Fairey and Banksy. His obsession with street art leads him on his own path that is revealed in the film.

The documentary itself is very interesting and as mentioned, a great insight into the grimy underground art movement which some class as ‘vandalism’. The film depicts many artists ‘doing their thing’, whether it be pasting a giant poster onto a wall or spraying a freight train with graffiti. Anything can be classed as art these days and this rising art movement is at the forefront. Guetta is willing to document it as his hunger for filming never seems to end.

The thing that drew me into this film was seeing these secret and mysterious artists such as Banksy at work. Though his face was obscured and his voice changed, it was interesting seeing him working on his next piece. There are segments within the film where Banksy offers his own thoughts into the events surrounding Guetta. Banksy

Thierry Guetta himself is described as ‘mental’ by Banksy who realises that Guetta is not the filmmaker he was setting himself up to be, in a scene which I thought was hilarious, as the viewer is shown Guetta’s own film on street art, which is a horrific mishmash of scenes that are all edited together in a way that they share no relation to each other.                                                                 The elusive Banksy

I don’t really know how to describe this piece of work. I was expecting a documentary on Banksy but it turns out to be something completely different. It is an enigma. I really enjoyed this film though, even if some of Guetta’s life is not true, it was still very entertaining. This is something different and totally worth seeing.

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My First Post

So, I’m starting my own movie review blog just ’cause I’m bored and I feel like it. It’s the summer holidays and so far I’ve done nothing except watch films. :/

But why waste my time dawdling about, instead putting my time and effort to reviewing films and other movie-related content. So, here goes….

The first movie I’ll be happily reviewing is Exit through the Gift Shop. 

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Hello world!

Welcome to WordPress.com! This is your very first post. Click the Edit link to modify or delete it, or start a new post. If you like, use this post to tell readers why you started this blog and what you plan to do with it.

Happy blogging!

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