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The Bridge on the River Kwai


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The Bridge on the River Kwai + The Great Escape + The Dirty Dozen
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Product Details

  • Actors: William Holden, Alec Guinness, Jack Hawkins, Sessue Hayakawa, James Donald
  • Directors: David Lean
  • Writers: Carl Foreman, Michael Wilson, Pierre Boulle
  • Producers: Sam Spiegel
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Anamorphic, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: Portuguese (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono), English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono), English (Dolby Digital 5.1), French (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono), Spanish (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono)
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish, French, Portuguese, Georgian, Chinese, Thai
  • Dubbed: French, Portuguese
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: PG (Parental Guidance Suggested)
  • Studio: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: November 21, 2000
  • Run Time: 161 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (511 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00004XPPC
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,758 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Bridge on the River Kwai" on IMDb

Special Features

  • Talent files for David Lean, Alec Guiness, William Holden, Jack Hawkins and Sessue Hayakawa

Editorial Reviews

When British POWs build a vital railway bridge in enemy-occupied Burma, Allied commandos are assigned to destroy it in David Lean's epic World War II adventure THE BRIDGE ON THE RIVER KWAI. Spectacularly produced, THE BRIDGE ON THE RIVER KWAI captured the imagination of the public and won seven 1957 Academy Awards(r), including Best Picture, Best Actor (Alec Guinness), and Best Director. Even it's theme song, an old WWII whistling tune, the Colonel Bogey March, became a massive hit. THE BRIDGE ON THE RIVER KWAI continues today as one of the most memorable cinematic experiences of all time.

Customer Reviews

A great story and great acting.
mrb
As British Colonel Nicholson (Guinness) refuses to join the work of building a bridge, Japanese Colonel Saito tests his will in the most extreme ways.
Tsuyoshi
One of the best films ever made.
SirNIck

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

223 of 233 people found the following review helpful By The Collector on November 3, 2010
Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
I'm still not entirely sure why Amazon lumps the reviews for all versions of a given release in the same category. It makes it especially hard to locate reviews on the blu ray version. Anyway, this is a review of the blu ray version recently released, in a collector's format. It is composed of basically a digibook within a hard external case, which is quite flashy as it has raised illustrations and looks quite nice. Upon removing the digibook (which is quite a bit thicker than others), you will find a blu ray version of the film, a dvd version, and a few other things.

First up is the small production book. Actually in comparison with the material you get from other digibooks (which are usually scant on information), these few pages are full of notes and events during filming, almost a quick documentary in itself. It's nice to see a version of this book-within-case that is heavy on words and light on pictures, which are still nice on a few pages.

Second are the replica lobby cards, located after the incorporated book. Not much to say about these, a nice addition for collectors but not much else.

Finally the movie itself. As far as picture goes, its unbeatable for a film from 1957. Much like the other big releases around this time period, care was indeed taken to release a near perfect picture. Obviously in full 1080p, the lighting and scenery really shine here. I'm no expert on filmography and never really looked into the film types and ratios, but what I can judge is a quality blu ray transfer. The picture is sheer excellence down to the last scene, and is quite reminscent of the older James Bond transfers which were fantastic. All in all, as good picture as you'll see anywhere else in blu ray. The audio is great as well, with a fantastic 5.1 transfer. I have 5.
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103 of 120 people found the following review helpful By James D. Eret on July 3, 2000
Format: VHS Tape
David Lean's "Bridge on the River Kwai" is one of my favorite movies of all time, and one one the greatest war movies of all time, but a differnt war movie. Can the civilized Colonel Nichoson (brilliantly played by Alec Guinness and won him an Academy Award for best actor) defy the brutal Japanese Colonel Saito(Sessue Hayakawa, also brilliant)and win the war of wills? At first we think he won't but the plot takes a strange turn and this Nicholson turns out to be as fanatic as Saito is in the prison camp. Beautifully shot in Ceylon(Sri Lanka) serving well for Burma by Freddie Young, Lean's great photographer also for "Lawrence of Arabia" the viewer can feel the heat and humidity, see the starving appearance of the prisoners, who start buiding the bridge as a lark until Nicholson wins his points of honor and they work harder than ever. My favorite line in the movie is one of Colonel Saito's favorite sayings: "Be happy in your work," which takes on more and more irony as the film and story unfolds. There is a side plot, with William Holden barely escaping, only to be brought back back with hard-core commandoes(led by demolitions expert Jack Hawkins) to the camp to blow up the bridge. This is a wonderful psychological and subtle war film, with just enough adventure and action to balance its war of words, over the Geneva Covention(Nicholson keeps a copy of it in his pocket and then is slapped with it by Saito)over points of British stiff upper lip and Japanese warrior code,Bushido, two vastly different viewpoints but in the end breed fanatics. The acting, editing, writing,and photography are all flawless. This is one of the few war movies made forty ago that still rank with any today. A true masterpiece, much imitated.Read more ›
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64 of 74 people found the following review helpful By P. Ferrigno on November 21, 2000
Format: DVD
The release of David Lean's powerful, intelligent and thought provoking anti-war masterpiece on widescreen DVD accompanied by the added bonus documentary "The Making of the Bridge on the River Kwai", along with other featurette's, theatrical trailers and an appreciation of the film by noted director, John Milius, is indeed a cause for celebration amongst cinema afficiando's of this most superb of motion pictures.
The remarkable novel by Pierre Boulle (also author of "Monkey Planet"...filmed as the memorable "Planet of the Apes") is masterfully brought to the screen by director David Lean, a true genius behind many historical epics.
Deep inside snake ridden Asian jungles, British and American prisoners of war toil under the sweltering tropical sun working on part of the infamous Burma railway that claimed thousands of Allied lives during WWII. Colonel Saito (talented Japanese actor Sessue Hayakawa) presides over his POW camp with an iron rule...driving his Japanese troops as hard as his malnourished prisoners. Enter the honorable and steadfast English POW, Colonel Nicholson (Alec Guiness in an Oscar winning performance) refusing to capitulate to Saito's demands that British officers perform manual labour alongside enlisted men. Each man's blind adherance to their own personal code of honor sees the two men plunge into a psychological war of will, bravado and courage...each determined not to waver from their personal beliefs.
As these two leaders clash with each other, American prisoner of war and resident camp gravedigger, Shears (William Holden) effects on escape from the brutal prison camp and after nearing death, he makes his way back to the Allied forces.
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