...engaging and discerning culture, as a way of life...

December 14, 2005

Lawrence of Arabia - 7

This is one long film. Three hours and forty minutes! At first I was having a hard time seeing why this film has gotten so many awards and is considered a great film. By the end, it was obvious. Not only is the film well shot and creates a believable world, it also is a complex story of one man. This film is the true story of T.E. Lawrence, who helped join the Arab tribes to conquer the Turks in World War I. The films is really about the paradox of being human. Lawrence is portrayed in the film as both wise and foolish, sane and crazy, compassionate and tyrant. The film does a good job of showing this struggle. At different points Lawrence's ego is huge at other points he is more humble and realistic. It is also interesting that this film shows the interactions of two cultures, the British military and the desert Arabs. I think the history that it tells would be helpful for our current times and our assumptions and stereotypes of Arabs in our own time. It is also interesting that the film end with a fight over control of water (As an undergrad, I took a class on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, the prof said "if you solve the water problem you've solved the problem." Still not the whole story, but not something most people think about). A well told story that will not get old because of its honesty about what it means to be human and the struggle to reconcile our good and bad actions.


Jason said...

I love this movie so much. It's definitely long, but--to me--doesn't feel like it by the time the credits roll.

Anonymous said...

This, along with Bridge on the River Kwai, is one of the few classics I've never seen. Your recommendation confirms the fact that I should rectify this soon.