MovieChat Forums > Lawrence of Arabia (1962) Discussion > Lawrence of Arabia is boring!

Lawrence of Arabia is boring!


First of all, I know I'm going to get a lot of backlash for saying that Lawrence of Arabia is boring.

It is important to note that I am a huge fan of the classic movies such as Ben Hur, Citizen Kane, Gone With the Wind, Dr. Zhivago, etc.

But Lawrence of Arabia is way too long at 216 minutes. Their explanations of the characters could be much shorter.

I do feel bad about not liking this movie because it has a fantastic cast. In fact, some of these actors are my favorites.

For those of you who do like this movie, continue to watch it because I won't.

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Everyone is entitled to their own opinion. For example, I personally find Lawrence of Arabia to be both thrilling and beautiful, but am absolutely bored to tears by Citizen Kane, which is considered by many to be THE greatest film of all time.

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Thanks for that. I think Lawrence of Arabia is fantastic, but Citizen Kane always leaves me cold.

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"Everyone is entitled to their own opinion" has got to be the most overused phrase in the English language. It really says nothing except the obvious (did you REALLY think that I was not aware that I was entitled to my own opinion ??), plus it is poor grammar to boot ("everyone" is singular whereas "their" is plural).

I wish people would STOP using this phrase, along with "with all due respect ...".

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It's that people tend to get nervous or feel 'wrong' going against the majority opinion, especially when it's made up of a great number of influential high ranking critics.

But with all due respect, everyone is entitled to their own opinion.... :)

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I have found that one someone says "...with all due respect...", they're about to say something disrespectful.

Kind of like when my wife is yelling at me and says "I hope you're happy" - she never truly means it.

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plus it is poor grammar to boot ("everyone" is singular whereas "their" is plural).


False. It is known as a "singular they", and has been a part of English for about 700 years:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Singular_they

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You really know you are scraping the bottom of the barrel for arguments
when you have to get on someone's, in this case, a lot of someones'
grammar.

>> plus it is poor grammar to boot ("everyone" is singular whereas "their" is plural).

I am not even sure you are right in the sense that you/you can be singular
or plural, and so can everyone. It is accepted usage now, and it sounds right
and there is not a really good way to say it any other way.

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To enjoy Lawrence, you need to watch it on a large high definition television on blu-ray so you can appreciate the stunning beauty of the photography and immerse yourself in the film. You also need to pay close attention because missing one line of dialogue may result in not understanding a character's motivation. It's a movie that cannot be watched casually.

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To enjoy Lawrence, you need to watch it on a large high definition television on blu-ray so you can appreciate the stunning beauty of the photography and immerse yourself in the film. You also need to pay close attention because missing one line of dialogue may result in not understanding a character's motivation. It's a movie that cannot be watched casually.


Frankly, I think that Lawrence of Arabia, like many other great classic films made during that period, cry to be seen on a great big, wide screen, in a real movie theatre, with the lights down low, while sharing the experience with a whole bunch of other people, whether one knows them or not. The beautiful photography, the battle scenes, etc., the overall photography, scenery, characters, etc., are taken to the next level when viewed on a great big, wide movie theatre screen.

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actually, I'm of the opinion that if you can watch a film on the small screen with no fancy tech and bluray etc, and it STILL has power, then seeing it on a bigger screen will simply be a more beautiful experience of something grand. but a good movie is always a good movie, even on a small screen. if it doesn't effect you on the small screen, very doubtful it will be any different on a giant clear one.

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Seeing any famous film on a great big, wide movie theatre screen, with the lights down low provides an already powerful and famous movie not only with more beauty and a grander experience, but even more power, as well.

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Well to me the film is "TOO LONG" to watch in one sitting. If you have a very large TV and a blu-ray player hooked up to a great sound system then you will enjoy the film more.

To me it takes me 2-3 Nights to get through it.

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Ideally, the best presentation available is in 4K in-theater. I've seen it twice in 4K and it's unbelievable. The blu-ray is beautiful, too.

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No, the ideal/best presentation is a 70mm film print, which is how it was originally shown. 4K is a downgrade from 70mm.

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A movie that depends on its visuals is less of a movie than one that doesn't.
It's like saying a play depends on what theater it is done in, or it is really
"good" it should not be done in a theater at all because that will detract
from the plot? Visuals, setting and effects are nice ... like icing on a cake,
but you cannot eat all icing, and too much icing makes a bad cake.

Oh, and if you want to think that, fine, but you might want to recall that
a lot of these kinds of movies were done in ... I think the brandname was
CinemaScope ... a 3:9 ratio. In theaters they had to retrofit the whole
screen to be able to show that. I don't think many theaters have that
anymore, particularly the multi-screen theaters. So, even if you watch
it with a large screen display you are not going to have the same effect
as when the movie came out in theaters, as it was meant to be played.

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The power of Lawrence of Arabia is totally lost on you.

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mrmathexpert,

First of all, the power of this movie is not lost on me! I know that it is a great epic classic and it has fantastic cinematography (for which it did win an Oscar), but I just don't care for it.

If you remember from my first post, I am a huge fan of the classics. I listed a few that I have, but I do have much more than what I did list.

In spite of this movie having a fabulous cast (Peter O'Toole is one of my favorites), I just can't get into this movie. That's not to say it isn't a great movie, but if something does not hold my attention, then it makes no sense for me to watch it.

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Lawrence of Arabia is one of my Top Five films and Peter O'Toole is my favorite actor. That said, I respect your reasoned explanation as to why this film did not speak to you...well said, however, I am curious, what are your top 5 films?? Thanks.

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woody,

I appreciate your reply. In no particular order, my all time favorite classic movies are:

Citizen Kane (1941)

Ben-Hur (1959-I have also seen the 1925 version)

Gone With the Wind (1939)

The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1923 and 1939)

The Ten Commandments (1956-I have also seen the 1923 version)

The Wizard of Oz (1939)

Les Miserables (1935 and 1952)

Inherit the Wind (1960)

Of Mice and Men (1939)

Wuthering Heights (1939)

I realize I named more than 5, but I had trouble narrowing it down. There are actually more I could add to this list. I have all of these shows either on dvd/blu-ray or on my DVR list.

To be fair, I actually enjoy all of the different genres such as Silent, Musical, Drama, Comedy, Disney (both animated and live action), Anime, Action/Adventure, Western, Mystery, Science Fiction Horror, Mafia and even movies that most people would consider brainless. For example, I adore the Lake Placid movies. I guess those are considered Horror-Comedy.

What about you? Do you enjoy different genres of movies? Do you have a guilty pleasure movie?

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Thanks for your list of iconic films. All of which are beyond criticism, although I just can't appreciate The Wizard of Oz....

My Top 25 list can be read if you click on my moniker, wooody. The majority are much more pedestrian than your list. They stretch beyond one genre. I prefer character, dialog driven films. MY Top 25 films clearly are not the critics choices. Although I concede the iconic films are more important or noteworthy, I chose 25 films who's stories and/or characters resonated with me. Kind of like friends with whom you like to revisit. AND yes, too many are guilty pleasures.

Thanks for asking.

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Woody,
Thanks for your list of your favorite films. I will admit I have not seen all of these, but will have to make a point to do so. It's kind of a coincidence because I noticed you have Tombstone as number 8 and I am actually watching my DVD of this movie right now.

I actually also have Wyatt Earp on my DVR list, but I think Tombstone is a much better movie. I felt Kurt Russell was much better at conveying the character of Wyatt Earp than Kevin Costner was. I also like Val Kilmer better as Doc Holliday, but I will give Dennis Quaid credit. He actually did a good representation.

I also respect your opinion about The Wizard of Oz. I don't think there will ever be any movie that has a 100% fan base.

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P,

What are the odds that you would be watching Tombstone! The then svelte Val Kilmer steals the film however I much prefer it over the slooow Wyatt Earp. I also believe that Kurt Russell is a tremendously under rated actor...what a lengthy career he has enjoyed.

If there is one movie on my list I wish you would sample it would be Whiplash...you won't regret it. Your tastes run mature so please check out the trailer for The Girl in the Cafe. A very sweet love story.

Thanks.

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woody,

Thanks so much for your timely replies. I know this sounds too much like a coincidence, but I have also always believed that Kurt Russell has always been extremely under rated. I felt he should have at least been nominated for an Oscar for Tombstone. By the way, what is the first movie in which you remember seeing Kurt Russell? For me, it was Follow Me Boys (A Disney film starring Fred MacMurray).

You are certainly correct about his lengthy career. And do you also notice that there is never anything negative about him in the news? He is really one who made a smooth transition from child actor to adult actor.

I have set up Whiplash to record on my DVR on 7/31/15. Unfortunately, The Girl in the Cafe is not being shown. Just to make sure that I'm thinking of the right film, is this a British film made in 2005?

Anyway, thanks for the suggestions!

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Thanks Peggy,

I love the cinema. It's clear that you share the same passion.

Please let me know your impressions of Whiplash, for better or worse!!

N

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Woody,

I did finally see Whiplash. I wrote my thoughts about it on that board.

I figured we were getting too far off topic being this board is supposed to be about Lawrence of Arabia! LOL!

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Only boring people get bored.

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With the exception of 'awrence", not only a pedestrian list but for the most part forgettable. The OP's list is legitimate although her credibility is strained because of her distaste for David Lean's masterpiece.

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As I see your list, I think I may be right about my assessment. There are epics and films that need patience, but all those films have some females characters or appeal of some kind. LOA has no real female characters save a nurse or background character.

What we got here is... failure to communicate!
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"Lawrence Of Arabia" bored me too.

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There is a difference between ontological 'ís'
and 'I find' or 'I do not like', it is not to my taste.

If you write 'L of A is boring'
than I say :
Your conclusion falls short and your explanation should be much longer,

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Hmm. I love this movie and was completely bored by Gone with the Wind.

Different strokes.

Come at the king, you best not miss.

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Liquid Ozymandias,

I completely agree with you. There is never going to be any movie that everybody likes.

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I'll agree with Ronald. Too long and boring isn't much of a criticism. You're entitled to your opinion of course, but it's hard to take seriously someone who doesn't bother elaborating.

I'm afraid that you underestimate the number of subjects in which I take an interest!

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Hancock the Superb,

Perhaps my subject should have read, "In my opinion, Lawrence of Arabia is boring!"

Anyway, if you look at my original post, I thought I did explain why I didn't care for it. It does go on for too long. If they had even cut out at least 30 minutes, I think I may have enjoyed it more. I know it's a classic (I adore the classic movies) and I'm not even saying it's not a great movie, but to me, it just drags on and on. It has too many scenes of camels and Arabs (Don't pull the racist card!) and a lot of scenery and not enough acting and dialogue. Granted, what acting and dialogue there was, was great. I'm a very big fan of Peter O'Toole, Alec Guinness and Omar Sharif.

And before you say I just don't have the attention span, I can sit through movies
like The Ten Commandments (220m), Gone With the Wind (238m), and Ben-Hur (212m-The only one which is actually just a bit shorter than Lawrence of Arabia.)

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I'd have to partially agree, while I really enjoyed the first hour or so of the film, the motivations of the character became tedious and difficult to understand. and it really dragged, could have easily been cut an hour. and by the time it was over I was disinterested. while yes,it was well made, and had excellent cinematography. and great acting I just was disappointed with it in the end, overall I liked it, but I didn't love it and not sure I would watch it again.

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I just watched it yesterday and I agree 100% with your assessment.
Even if I bothered to type out my own full opinion of it, it really wouldn't look much different than yours.

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Well, clearly, it's not an issue of attention span but personal taste. Lawrence certainly isn't a "classic Hollywood narrative," especially in its first half where it's overwhelmingly spectacle. I can certainly understand not liking it and it doesn't reflect badly on you, or anyone else, if you don't like a specific movie.

I'm afraid that you underestimate the number of subjects in which I take an interest!

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You're boring!!!!!!!!!!

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Unhelpful comment.

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I may be assuming too much, but by your name you are probably a woman? This is definitely a man film.

What we got here is... failure to communicate!


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MycroftHolmes,

You are correct about me being a woman. I never consciously thought about it, but you could be partially right about why I may not care for this film.

It would be interesting to know how many women do enjoy this film.

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Trust me, it has nothing to do with your gender.
I'm a guy and I was bored through most of it.
I can appreciate the cinematography, and the acting- but that's all.

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flixfanatic,

Thank you for your reply.

For awhile there, I thought maybe something was wrong with me since almost everyone on here seems to just love this movie.

The bottom line is, there is never going to be any movie that every person will like.

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Today, after a half dozen attempts over the years, I finally watched this in one sitting, with a short break at intermission.



"I will not go down in history as the greatest mass-murderer since Adolf Hitler!" - Merkin Muffley

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It would be interesting to know how many women do enjoy this film.

According to the IMDb rating statistics, quite many do: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0056172/ratings-female

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The most shocking female rating i've ever seen on IMDb, is the female ratings for ''Being There (1979)'', they gave it a 2.9 i believe... and that film is such a masterpiece.

Favorite films of all time list
http://www.imdb.com/list/ls031708001

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they gave it a 2.9 i believe...

Seems to be 7.7 now: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0078841/ratings-female

Maybe the rating has been substantially lower at some point; seems possible, since there are not that many votes from females for that film.

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Oh wow, that drastically changed, i saw a massive thread where a lot of people where complaining about the low score by females XD (Sitting at a 2.9)

Favorite films of all time list
http://www.imdb.com/list/ls031708001

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