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Customer Review

503 of 540 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The desert is a sea in which no oar is dipped., June 11, 2003
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This review is from: Lawrence of Arabia (DVD)
It is unsurprising to me that some people find Lawrence of Arabia boring. If you have the attention span of a hummingbird, this is not a film you will enjoy. It has no car chases, no bikini-clad supermodels, and nary a kung-fu move to be seen. Instead, all it offers is tortured respect for everything it touches. Lawrence of Arabia is a film that elevated the art of cinematic storytelling to new heights, and it shows. It is the journey, not the destination, that the viewer should focus on. In order to enjoy this film, you must make a commitment to watch it. Get comfortable, have something to drink on hand (you'll know why about halfway through), turn off the phone, and put the remote under a pillow. I've seen a lot of films, and some I've liked to varying degrees, and others I've simply been satisfied that Hollywood didn't butcher the underlying work or premise too badly in pursuit of the lowest common denominator. Lawrence of Arabia is different. It is one of those truly rare films that makes you feel grateful for having seen it, for the efforts of all those involved to craft, create, and perserve over the years just so you might have the chance to see it. It is such a fine film that its merits are obvious, and negative statements about it tend to simply reflect back on the critic.
Why? Many reasons. The actors are likewise gifted with rare talent, and superbly cast. The settings and scenes are invariably breathtaking. The plot is engrossing and entertaining without ever becoming heavy-handed. Film students will while away hours discussing everything from the Christ imagery to the undercurrents of homoeroticism, but they do that with every film. I suggest you simply kick back and enjoy an excellent, time-honored epic about a stranger in a strange land. It is a harrowing, draining journey, but one you will not regret.
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Tracked by 2 customers

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Showing 1-10 of 17 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Mar 27, 2007 11:54:17 AM PDT
Purple Bird says:
[Customers don't think this post adds to the discussion. Show post anyway. Show all unhelpful posts.]

Posted on Aug 16, 2007 11:37:49 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Aug 16, 2007 11:39:25 PM PDT
H. Price says:
I agree wholeheartedly with your review. Most people today don't like a movie more than 90 or 105 minutes long. Personally, I enjoy a longer movie if it adds to character or situation development, and this movie does. T.E. Lawrence is an extraordinary personality, a man of character who tried to keep the promises to the Arab people that his government let him make but had no intention of keeping in order to win the bedouins over to the Allied cause in the First World War. It helps if one knows something of Lawrence and his role in the Middle East theater of the war (or something about that neglected theater itself) to fully appreciate this movie, and this story. Yossarian is correct about attention spans these days with people growing up on video games and movies made from video games. There has to be "action" every minute or two or it's "boring", character and story development are lost arts these days. If you have no interest in history, this movie will be boring. And most people don't seem to have such an interest, unfortunately.

Posted on Jan 4, 2008 2:47:51 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 5, 2008 2:07:36 PM PST
Puxmin49 says:
This movie is like looking at a wounderfil Artistic Painting.....Todays film makers feel we are only intertained be horrific gore bordering on, pornographic violence.... The more you keep watching these films, the more you get accustomed to seeing, grafic in your face death, via, ultra realistic events......Then, you need more gore/horror, to out do the last movie, until you get desesitized, and viewing this kind of "intertainment" feels normal, ...... We live in fear based society. And now with DVD, even the younger kids have access to this ultra horror and gore. Young minds are inpressionable..... Look at the violent acts our children are commiting, and often voicing that they got their ideas, from watching these movies, and acting them out, not realizing the consequences....we need more movies like Lawrene Of Arabia, to help us move from a "Doomed" hatful, violent world... When will it end with these "grind House" movies?....After part 3, part 4, part 10?? ....Be careful what you expose yourself to, your experiences become who you are! ....Sorry, this should have been a review insread of a comment.

Posted on Apr 7, 2008 6:04:31 AM PDT
[Deleted by Amazon on Nov 30, 2009 9:18:05 PM PST]

Posted on Apr 22, 2008 5:41:11 PM PDT
Val says:
Great commentary on this magnificent masterpiece by David Lean. Without question, my favorite movie of all time. Cinematography and the score by Maurice Jarre are incomparable. I first saw this when it came to theaters originally; I was 11. It held my attention so greatly, that I went back the very next day and saw it again. I agree with your comments about car chases, kung fu moves, etc. This is a more cerebral film, and infinitely more enjoyable, particularly when the white stallion leaps from the train! My Dad was a Pan American Captain at that time and had both David Lean and Peter O'Toole on his flights after the filming. David Lean told my Dad that he considered this his masterpiece, so we were anxiously awaiting the film to show up in theaters. Still the best. Val

Posted on Dec 19, 2008 11:54:25 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Dec 19, 2008 12:00:04 PM PST
L. Gordon says:
Agree with everything Yossarian says. 2 interesting twists: a few years back Washington Post movie critics published their list of the most romantic movies ever made. Lawrence of Arabia made the list with the wry comment, "There's a palpable romance with the desert." Recently, a woman wrote the Washington Post, saying that her young son loves the desert, and could the Post recommend something her son could see on the desert. The response, "Let him watch Lawrence of Arabia."

Posted on Jun 23, 2009 1:55:16 AM PDT
Quite simply the most thrilling and thorough telling of an extraordinary tale. David Lean somehow manages to stand you there in the desert, in the heat and the dust, and gives you an unbelievable feeling of scale. The sight of Sherif Ali riding to his well, that lasts for 3-4 minutes, merely to shoot dead Lawrences companion is unforgetable. Brilliant story, wonderful cast and a very hot desert. Perfect movie!

Posted on Oct 16, 2009 10:53:07 AM PDT
J. Bryce says:
I loved the "attention span of a hummingbird" comment. That's exactly how I felt as I was reading what some of those bored reviewers had to say. I agree entirely with your comments. I have lost count of the number of times I've watched this magnificent and thoroughly satisfying film. I look forward to watching it many times more.

Posted on Dec 10, 2010 3:31:09 AM PST
Metalsmith says:
Thank you for your review. You've given me what I wanted to know in a very positive, strong manner. Thanks!

Posted on Jul 19, 2011 3:29:04 PM PDT
penny lane says:
Well spoken, Thanks!
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Location: Durham, NC USA

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