Incredibly, he was 68 when he played the role. It is, simply put, my very favorite film--bar none. The next morning brings an elaborate interplay of characters and motives, as the sound of the approaching train creates suspense, while Nicholson, incredibly, seems ready to expose the sabotage rather than see his beloved bridge go down. The case went to trial in 1997. Then there is Saito, who is stuck to his own Japanese code of honor. In the hellish conditions of the camp, he worked courageously to ensure that as many of his men as possible would survive. To say that it is loosely based on a true story is generous.
Guinness wins and then proceeds to guide his men in building a superb bridge to prove the mettle of British soldiers under any conditions. Simply put, -Kwai- is an excellently constructed film made by people who obviously cared a great deal about it. And you wonder, you ask yourself, what the sum total of your life represents. As a result, the viewer comes to care a great deal about it as well. B Unlike his film portrayal, Toosey tried sabotaging the bridge building for the Allied cause D. The cinematography is great even though the color seems increasingly drained in film versions that I have seen.
Yet amidst the superb story pacing, biting dialogue and complex character renderings, the film is at least partially flawed. Other notable performances include Hayakawa, entirely convincing as the tormented Saito, and Jack Hawkins, as demolition expert Major Warden, the absolute personification of the undaunted British stiff-upper-lip. It does not matter where Pierre Boulle got the name. Los Angeles Times 30 Sep 1979: l15. Columbia claimed that this was because the estate of had threatened legal action over the film's title, thus breaching the contract. I think Lean clearly preferred the latter, but the subject matter and his approach to it may have landed somewhere in between.
You can't make movies there'. Ricketts under the pseudonym Kenneth Alford , the piece was adapted into an Oscar-winning orchestrated score by Malcom Arnold for The Bridge on the River Kwai. You will receive a weekly newsletter full of movie-related tidbits, articles, trailers, even the occasional streamable movie. And we even get subjetive shots from the eyes of Lt. The Man Behind the Bridge. The Observer27 July 1997: 003. The Colonel Nicholson character is based on the allied camp commander, Lieutenant Colonel Philip Toosey, who was a remarkable officer by any standards.
Saito has been ordered by the Japanese Army to use the captured soldiers to build a bridge across the Kwai River, providing for a connector railroad to run supplies between Bangkok and Rangoon. Los Angeles Times 27 June 1988: G1. May he rest in peace. Alec Guiness also delivers a fine performance as a bold general whose own pride is, at the same time, his most noble quality as well as his greatest fault. Shears is already in the camp; we've seen him steal a cigarette lighter from a corpse to bribe his way into the sick bay.
They're throwing bombs over there. The supporting cast includes James Donald Clipton , Geoffrey Horne Joyce , Percy Herbert Grogan , Ann Sears Nurse and Andre Morell Green. Similarly, in an episode of The Fresh Prince of Bel Air, Carlton sings his own fight song to the tune. Saito insists that Nicholson order his men to build a bridge over the river Kwai, which will be used to transport Japanese munitions. The Bridge on the River Kwai is a masterpiece in pacing, performances, and scripting. Holden, as well, delivers an outstanding performance as Shears, capturing that somewhat embittered, off-handed sarcasm and resignation of a man trapped by circumstances beyond his control, who nevertheless does what he can to make the most of it, while awaiting the first opportunity for escape that affords itself. And what a rare treat, having two performances of this caliber in a single film.
But Lean and his two screenwriters take plenty of liberties with the details, fictionalizing the idea that a former prisoner would come back to blow up the bridge, as well as the necessity to blow it up with dynamite. Warden too, believes in the book, but in a vastly different way, and only seeks to get the job done. There is no glorification here. The story just did not connect with me. This film especially the ending is one you will never forget; a classic in every sense of the word, it exemplifies the magic of the movies. Instead, the psychological dimension of brutality comes across clearly. Advertisement Most war movies are either for or against their wars.
After the war, he showed great generosity of spirit by saving the life of Colonel Saito, second in command at the camp and a relatively decent officer, when he spoke up for him at the war crimes tribunal. For more, check out our. Colonel Saito wanted to have the bridge built but he was under orders first from the Japanese Imperial Army but later in the film it's Lieutenant Colonel Nicholson who wants to have the bridge built as a testimony to the sacrifices made by the men under his command representing the British engineering skills. The commandant Colonel Saito Sessue Hayakawa informs them that all prisoners , regardless of rank , are to work on the construction of a railroad bridge over the River Kwai. Lean handles the climax with precision and suspense. Lean knows what he wants and how to get it, and he takes a terrific story and this definitely is one and tells it by using every bit of space--visually and audibly-- at this disposal. Hayakawa and Guinness make a good match as they create two disciplined officers who never bend, but nevertheless quietly share the vision of completing the bridge.
We get subjective shots of Shears from the base of the bridge looking up at the Japanese guards above. The film was shot in 1988 in the Philippines. Performances are all perfect, photography is legendary, and the entire production is just suffused in an epic scale that only Lean that deliver. Warden to return as part of a plan to blow up the bridge. The story in the jungle moves ahead neatly, economically, powerfully. I'm still not sure what I think of that claim, but having seen - The Bridge on the River Kwai- enough times in the past several years, I think I'm persuaded that it's at least half right.
Philadelphia Inquirer 29 May 1988: F. Some viewers may see such dramatism as indicative of an entire far-fetched approach — that captured troops could ever be so hunky dorey, treated so well by the Japanese guards, splashing around in the water and whistling along with their captured commander. Saito Sessue Hayakawa holds a collection of captured British soldiers and their leader, Colonel Nicholson Guinness , along with shipwrecked American naval officer, Commander Shears William Holden. Finally, Nicholson agrees, not so much to cooperate with his captor as to provide a morale-boosting project for the military engineers under his command. What a special film if it can indeed thrill and inspire at the same time! Unger said the film was not a sequel.