WWII, in a British disciplinary camp located in the Libyan desert. Prisoners are persecuted by Staff Sergeant Williams.
Taking a break from being Bond, Sean Connery showed the world his acting chops in this extremely intense drama.
Focusing on the treatment of prisoners in a Far East British military prison, Connery is the recently busted sergeant-major, who becomes embroiled in a battle of wills with tyrannical sarge Harry Andrews, which involves a good deal of trekking up and down the titular land mass in the blazing heat. The torture really begins to tell and the black and white really shows up the barren landscapes mirroring the emptiness of the prisoners in their plight and their motivation.
Connery is superb in the role playing it like some sort of SAS version of Captain Virgil Hilts. Ever defiant and pushing himself beyond his own limits. A superb film that is extremely emotionally affecting.
Atmospherically black-and-white photography provides suitable accompaniment to Sidney Lumet's unrelenting direction, with the two leads into it with plenty of relish.