Escape from Colditz

Escape from Colditz
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Review

Suppose you had been imprisoned in Colditz in the 1940s, how would you have tried to escape? Perhaps, like the Dutch, you would have used a concealed man-hole in an exercise area. Or, like the French, you might have tunnelled out of a wine cellar. But would it have occurred to you, as it did to two British officers, to build a glider out of bedsheets and porridge then catapult it off the castle roof using a bathtub as counterweight?

Possibly not, but the bizarre desperation of the idea has inspired the nephew of one Colditz prisoner of war to re-create the plan — which never came to fruition. A moving, absorbing film follows his efforts.

Summary

Near the end of the Second World War, a group of British officers dreamt up an audacious plan to escape from the high-security Nazi prison using a two-man glider made from bed sheets and floorboards. They hoped to fly to freedom from the roof of the castle, but the conflict ended before they could put their plan into action. Here, Cambridge University's Hugh Hunt, whose uncle was a prisoner in Colditz, leads a team of aeronautical engineers and carpenters as they rebuild the glider in the attic where the original was constructed and attempt to see if the mission would have succeeded.

Cast & Crew

Contributor Hugh Hunt
Director Ian Duncan
Director Tom Cook
Executive Producer Ian Duncan
Producer Tom Cook
Documentary