Von Ryan's Express


Time Out says

Set in a World War II PoW camp in Italy, this starts with what looks like becoming solemn Bridge on the River Kwai stiff-upper-lippery, but soon turns into a ripping adventure. Directed with amused panache by Robson, and helped no end by a fine cast, it's action all the way as Sinatra contrives a mass escape which culminates in the theft of a train and a wild dash through German-occupied Italy to Switzerland and liberty. There's the masquerade in German uniforms to obtain the papers which will permit them to proceed; a sinister encounter with a Gestapo agent who turns out to be more interested in black marketeering; an attack on the main railway control tower at Milan; a superb final battle with the train perched precariously on a slender viaduct high in the Alps while the prisoners struggle to free a blocked tunnel, ward off attacking aircraft, and halt their pursuers. As much fun as an old-time serial.


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