Lawrence of Arabia

For most of this year I had made it a goal of mine to finally sit down and watch Lawrence of Arabia.  Now, that was definitely easier said than done, as I have this inane compulsion to only watch movies in the theatre or on Blu-ray, having almost done away with watching movies on DVD.  For Lawrence of Arabia, at the time of my decision, it was only available on DVD at that time, but I could also not even find a DVD copy of the movie to watch anywhere locally.

Finally, it seemed that the opportunity to watch the movie was coming my way as my local theatre does classic movies every month for two showings, and for the month of November the movie chosen was Lawrence of Arabia.  The two viewings were at noon on Sunday the 11th and at 6pm on Wednesday the 14th.  Sadly, I ended up working both of those days so I missed that opportunity.

On the Tuesday of last week, the 13th, I was at my local Future Shop and saw much to my surprise that Lawrence of Arabia had been released on that day to Blu-ray, so I quickly snapped up one of the remaining two copies and purchased it.  I didn’t have ant time to watch the movie until two days later when I was home sick from work, so I finally laid down to watch one of the biggest classics of all time that I had never seen before.

Before I go much further, I would like to mention something about me: I’m a history guy.  I love reading about it and I try to watch historical movies in context, knowing full well that the movies are in no way 100% accurate, and that is what we have with Lawrence of Arabia, and I am okay with that, as I know that nothing ever is able to be filmed 100% accurately.

I loved how Lawrence of Arabia was filmed.  Not many movies are filmed this way anymore, with a grand scope in mind, but you can tell that this movie was filmed to be an epic, and that it is.  At almost four hours in length it did have a few slower moments, but other than at the hour mark or so, I didn’t find them to be tedious at all.

The one thing I did find with watching it was the volume when it was just characters speaking to each other seemed to be quite low and that at times it was hard to catch what was being said, especially in the first half an hour of the film or so.

That issue aside, Lawrence of Arabia tells a dramatic story of the Arab Revolt during World War I against the Ottoman Empire and their fight for autonomy.  T.E. Lawrence was a British soldier assigned to assist the Arabs in the Middle East front against the Turks and Lawrence of Arabia follows a stylized account of his history in the region during the Arab Revolt.

I thoroughly enjoyed Lawrence of Arabia.  That being said, it definitely is not for everybody, but I would absolutely recommend it for anyone that is into history in general, or World War I or the Middle East in particular.

For all this and more, feel free to follow me on Twitter at @kymayer.  Cheers.