Monday, March 2, 2009

The Tunnel

Roland Suso Richter, 2001, Germany (8.3*)
Based on a true story from the 50’s of East German swimmer Harry Melchior who defected to West Germany then enlisted the aid of an odd assortment of diggers to see if they could dig a 145-meter tunnel to the east to help their relatives also escape to the west. This is a riveting film, if lengthy (nearly 3 hrs), that manages to maintain its tension throughout, and is a better escape film than the obviously Hollywooden Great Escape, and without any big stars as well. Mixing dark color with some grainy black & white sections, director Ricther manages to maintain a near documentary feel in a story that should have been told decades ago. Reminiscent of the Leon Uris novel Mila 18, about trapped Jews tunneling out of the Warsaw ghetto.


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These are the individual film reviews of what I'm considering the best 1000 dvds available, whether they are films, miniseries, or live concerts. Rather than rush out all 1000 at once, I'm doing them over time to allow inclusion of new releases - in fact, 2008 has the most of any year so far, 30 titles in all; that was a very good year for films, one of the best ever.

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