movie film review | chris tookey

Lawrence Of Arabia

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  Lawrence Of Arabia Review
Tookey's Rating
8 /10
Average Rating
9.60 /10
Peter O'Toole , Alec Guinness, Anthony Quinn
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Directed by: David Lean
Written by: Robert Bolt, based on Seven Pillars of Wisdom by T.E. Lawrence

Released: 1962
Genre: DRAMA
Origin: GB
Colour: C
Length: 222

Life and death of a war hero (Peter O'Toole).
Reviewed by Chris Tookey

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The first half is a splendid adventure, and Freddie Young's masterly cinematography gives a wonderful sense of the desert. Maurice Jarre's best score also contributes to the grandeur. It seems almost churlish to point out that the narrative is confused, and the politics incomprehensible. The second half, which tries to portray the man in decline, is stodgy and superficial, and O’Toole is far too obviously made up. Despite all these failings, a hammy performance by Anthony Quinn, and a reluctance to be explicit about Lawrence's homosexuality, it remains an all-enveloping cinematic experience, like 2001 or Close Encounters. This flawed masterpiece is even more impressive in the 216-minute "director's cut", released in 1989.

"Only one thing made me stick it out, and that was David Lean. Of all the principals, only he and I were in Jordan for the entire ten months. He carried the tripod, I the camera. After a horrible day I would see him sitting outside his tend, smoking a cigarette. I thought if he could do it, I could bloody well do it too."

(Peter O'Toole)

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