The Great Escape

"I’m going to cause such a terrible stink in this Third Reich of theirs that thousands of troops that could well be employed at the front will be tied up looking after us!"

It’s time for another Listener’s Choice episode, and we’re talking about one of the all-time WWII classics. That’s right, listener Michael Cook decided that it was time for us to discuss John Sturges’ 1963 film “The Great Escape,” and man, was he right on the money. 

Join us – Pete Wright and Andy Nelson – as we chat about our eight listener’s choice with “The Great Escape.” We talk about how this script was shaped around the real escape in 1944 of 76 POWs from Stalag Luft III, what details were changed for the film and how we feel about those changes. We chat about Sturges and the style he brings to the film paired with the way he directs his actors, giving them the freedom they wanted/needed to create their performances. We discuss those actors – and there are a lot of them including Steve McQueen, James Garner, Richard Attenborough, James Coburn, Charles Bronson and Donald Pleasence, to name a few – and what they bring to the table. We look at the fantastic production design, cinematography and editing that really bring this movie, filmed on location in Germany, to life, and what it took to get away from filming it outside of Palm Springs. We touch on Elmer Bernstein and the incredibly memorable score he delivers and what it does for the feel of the film. And we mention artist Archibald Willard and the connection his painting The Spirit of ‘76 has with the film. 

It’s a fantastic film, one we’re truly thrilled to talk about, so definitely check it out if you haven’t seen it before, then tune in!

Film Sundries

Trailers of the Week

Andy's Trailer: Kicks — "There’s something about this indie film’s story that I just dig. It’s about a kid who wants nothing more than to get his hands on a pair of Air Jordans only to have them stolen, so he, of course, tries to get them back. It’s got a dark vibe through the trailer that feels like it could go down a dark road yet is billed as a dramedy, so it intrigues me. Where are they going with the story? I don’t know but I really want to find out."

Pete's Trailer: The Space Between Us — "Yes, it’s a YA film. Yes, it’s about a teen love story between a girl, and the boy she meets born on Mars. But I love that twist, in fact, and the surrounding science is fascinating (what happens when we send people to Mars and they’re NOT destined to return home), so I’m giving this one a heart-warming family movie night shot."