The Colditz Story


Guy Hamilton’s archetypal British POW drama

Guy Hamilton’s archetypal British POW drama, based on real-life memoirs of Major Pat Reid (John Mills), paved the way for the long-running TV series.

A jokey, public-school tone pervades this Boys’ Own yarn, which wastes its imposing setting, and suggests that nationalities such as the Poles and the French (“blasted Frogs”) fundamentally can’t be trusted in the business of escaping from the Germans.

If you’re looking for a film to explore the psychological impact of imprisonment and the nature of male friendships in this environment, (re)watch Jean Renoir’s magnificent La Grande Illusion.

Dreary documentary extra.

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