Customer Reviews for

The Bridge on the River Kwai

Average Rating 4.5
( 10 )
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  • Posted October 1, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    arguably the best WWII film ever!

    starting out with the famous river kwai march, this movie greatly details the lives of allied prisoners in japanesw pow camps. it also greatly represents the mental strain one can suffer there, specifically the character played by alec guiness. he gives a better than ever preformance, and it has arguably the best ending in cinema history. without a doubt, watch this movie, you wont regret it!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    a bridge to violent times

    Well, this isn’t another war movie, but a very special one, over all considering it’s from 1957. Colonel Nicholson is a stubborn chief of the British Army. His enemy, the Japanese Col. Saito I think isn’t so stiff. It’s mostly the Bushido code that speaks for him and furthermore, he manages brutally the concentration camp, but Saito has a problem: he must build a bridge over the Kwai river and his engineers are unable to do these task. So, Nicholson, who seems to think in spite of his temporal defeat the Japanese are inferior to the British, with the excuse of preserve the moral of his men, decides to collaborate in the making of the bridge. That has to cost Nicholson to fall in treason, as his affection for codes and rules predominates over the main duty of a soldier: destroy the enemy. In effect, Nicholson is a sort of product of the Victorian and British colonial era, and he speaks with affect of his service time in India, a country by then, near to independence. So, when the tricky but vital soldier played by William Holden exposes the disastrous conditions of the camp, Nicholson is astonished: “This man is an eccentric, even considering he’s an American”, says. Holden is a man with a more modern and civil ideas. Nicholson and Saito are the past, but WW II is yet a modern war, not a colonial restricted one. So, with these antecedents, you can understand better the strange madness in what Nicholson falls: he’s by career, by nature or both, an obsessive man, and so, becomes obsessed with the bridge in itself and forgets he’s working for the enemy. A commando attack is made following the information provided by Holden, and Nicholson recovers the reason only a few seconds before he’s killed. The allied commando is directed curiously by a scholar from Cambridge played by Jack Hawkins, and Holden also perceives something lethal in his character. Effectively WW II gave pass to today’s high rate violent crime. David Lean had in this film a surprising instinct unequalled in his other works, also very good, but this is for me the best.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 2, 2011

    Brilliant film showing contrast between Allies

    This is easily one of the finest films ever, not just as a war movie, but as a motion picture in general. Sir Alec Guinness is simply brilliant as the British commander who tries so stubbornly to stand up to the Japanese but ends up collaborating with them. William Holden's character shows the stark contrast between the British military tradition and the American way of war. The Brits are trying to keep up a proud tradition and the honor of their regiment. To the Yanks the war was much more basic. I know many vets from both armies and the Americans had a more pragmatic view of the war. Lean shows this in the film. While Guinness stands up for his unit's honor and tradition, Holden is there for only one thing; to defeat the enemy. This was a true reflection on the two nations way of fighting. We Americans were there only to win. No matter what had to be done. This often caused strain between the Allies. The Brits often looked at things in shades of gray, the Yanks usually just in black and white. The ending reflects this contrast as Guinness realizes that his good intentions have gone far awry. A true masterpiece.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    A great warm-up to Lawrence of Arabia

    As the author of the epic hi-fantasy BLOODSPILLER, now available at iuniverse.com and soon here at BN.com, I have long since adored intelligent epics, both in book form and in movies. As with most David Lean movies of the 1950's and 1960's, this film is a visual stunner, but also a joy to the ear. No word of dialogue is wasted, the script brimming with typical British irony and a sense that the world, is indeed, mad. William Holden's acting persona had always been well-suited to cynical throw-away lines, and in Bridge he revels in it when confronted by a force greater than his own---the indomitable British will and discipline, the steely-nerved soldier who had ruled most of the world for a hundred years against much greater numbers. Who can forget the Battle of Omdurman, in which the British square of 10,000 men under Lord Kitchener, held off and defeated 100,000 Sudanese and finally broke the back of their rebellion.It is this mindset that controls Alec Guiness, his sense of misplaced honor in this instance, that sets him upon the task of building the bridge in that steaming, Burmese jungle. That he drives Sesu Hayakawa literally to madness, is exquisite. Folks, this is a fabulous movie for the thinking-man's fan, a mere warm-up for the greatest movie of all time which he would direct in 1962, starring Peter O'toole ( I'm not telling! )If you haven't seen bridge, I won't give away the ending, cause it will knock your socks off, This has been for many. many years one of my favorate movies. Buy it! You'l love it1 I promise!!!

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    Posted January 16, 2012

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    Posted July 8, 2009

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    Posted October 26, 2008

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    Posted January 9, 2010

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    Posted January 4, 2011

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    Posted November 1, 2010

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