Fox Home Video will be releasing a Great Escape Bluray on May 7th following a special screening of a new 4K digital transfer of John Sturges‘ 1963 film at the TCM Classic Film Festival (4.25 through 4.28). But all the Bluray extras listed in the press release are the same ones offered in the 2004 special collectors edition DVD. In fact, the DVD had a few more. So we’re just talking about a better-looking version of the feature, which is fine.
The one thing I’ve never been able to tolerate in The Great Escape is Angus Lennie‘s performance as RAF officer Archibald “Archie” Ives, the Scottish jockey who befriends Steve McQueen‘s Hilts. I instantly hated his twee Scottish accent — too Brigadoon. And his smiling, cheerful attempt to hide the fact that he was on the verge of cracking up. My first reaction when I saw this film as a kid was “fuck you, Ives…I hope you get machine-gunned to death by the krauts.” I wasn’t elated when this happened at the end of Act Two, but I wasn’t displeased. Is it too much to ask for a deleted scene in which Ives is tortured by the SS?