Free «Lawrence of Arabia » Essay Sample

Lawrence of Arabia

History is a specific thing, and if one wants to be remembered by generations he must personally do great things that can affect the course of history. There are people, who act in this way and leave a distinctive mark. A famous British spy Lawrence, whose incredible biography was turned into a big picture Lawrence of Arabia by David Lean, is among these great men. The film won 7 Oscar awards. The script is based on the book Seven pillars of wisdom by Lawrence, as well as historical research of biographers.

The film is the life story of a British intelligence officer Lawrence, who during the First World War served in the army in Arabia in active cooperation with the Arab nomads and for this reason received the name ‘Arabian’. Lawrence actively joined the Arabs, he was filled with their spirit and in fact led the guerrilla war of the Arabs against the Ottoman Empire (the so-called War in the Desert). At the beginning of the picture, after Lawrence’s death , correspondents interviewed people, who had known him. The memories transferred the participants to the military events. Excellent, sustained, diverse and insightful logic storyline catches a viewer from the beginning to the end of the film.

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The most valuable thing in the film is the opportunity to see the living hero and that is why many scenes are a kind of a test for the spirit. In one of the most remarkable scenes, Lawrence, who gave the order to take no prisoners, with mad eyes shoot unarmed Turks and grabs the knife, when the cartridges end. It is really hard to look at him at this moment. This difficulty does not deal with some kind of otherworldly bloody scenes, but with the fact that the viewer has very mixed feelings as though they are next to the hero. Fear, shame and rage are reflected in this scene.

The characters in the film are realistic to different degrees, they are either real or based on real biographies of personalities. The events are based on historical facts mostly. However, some scenes were too fictionalized. The second part of the movie tells a completely fictional story. The timeline is also frequently questionable. Thus, the film can be considered an accurate, but biased due to the fact that it was based on a book, which was written by Lawrence himself.

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At the level of form, David Lean methodically and deliberately used the format of 70 mm and made every effort to create a new spectacular realism. He initially refused to install tricks and effects and conceived his film so smooth that the viewer might get the impression that there was impersonal global perspective on Lawrence’s adventures. Actually, shooting lasted for 20 months. The full-scale episodes were filmed in Jordan, Morocco and Spain. The music reflects the perfect atmosphere of the film, showing that the world of Arabia was perfect for the hero. He felt true happiness in the boundless desert.

Peter O'Toole was chosen for the leading role for the first time and it was also the first film of Omar Sharif. It provided the impetus for a grand career of both actors. In the film, there are no female characters, except for the few second shot, showing the women who were in the environment of Prince Faisal. Before Omar Sharif got the role of the sheriff Ali, it had been offered to Alain Delon but he refused to wear brown contact lenses that would have hidden his blue eyes.

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The film disclosed the long-term problems and conflicts of the Arab people. It revealed the bitter truth: it was difficult to live in peace for different tribes due to their traditions, customs, rules, and laws. While watching, the viewer is immersed in a world of the Arab people, learns about their manners, realizes the spiritual essence of Arab culture, and becomes a party to all the events.

The director was brilliant at combining cozy intimacy, a grand scale and panoramic views, creating symbiosis and unforgettable sight. The script took into account the moments that were insignificant at first glance and thus avoided all the pitfalls. The picture is not only massive, but also a very holistic spectacle, which is supported by the epochal music of Maurice Jarre and Fred Gilbert.

The battle scenes involved hundreds of soldiers and horses, trains. The scenes included a camel attack, shooting, blood, sand storms and stunning scenery. Everything is filmed really live. The film makes a very pleasant impression and remains in the memory. The viewer is bound to feel the enchanting Arabian desert, looking at which one can only feel puzzled that such beauty is fatal to the average person in most cases.

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However, the main thing that enhances the historical atmosphere is the characters. Peter O`Toole perfectly embodied the character on the screen. He managed to show the scale and grandeur of the personality with all his pains, doubts and determination. He really does not play that role, but lives it on the screen. His actions and speech are deeply personal experience. It creates a feeling that one is spying on him. Generally, the cast is very good. No character stands out as foreign. The atmosphere is recreated very well. The fact that Lean and his team refused to introduce any female characters is worth noting. Despite this, there is some sensitivity and even severe attempts to create a line of sincere affection.