Award-winning adaptation of the Pierre Bouelle novel about the battle of wills between a Japanese POW camp commander and a British colonel over the construction of a rail bridge, and the parallel efforts by escaped prisoner Holden to destroy it. Holden's role was originally cast for Cary Grant. Memorable too for whistling "Colonel Bogey March." Because the writers were blacklisted, Bouelle (who spoke no English) was originally credited as the screenwriter.
Outstanding writing, acting, and directing turn what could have been just another drama about abused prisoners of war into a fable about the futility of all human endeavor. Excellent character studies of the respective commanders, who have a great deal in common despite their wildly different situations and, at least superficially, approaches to problem solving.