36 Hours Movie Review Summary

Actors: James Garner, Eva Marie Saint, Rod Taylor

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of 36 Hours

During World War II, American Major Jefferson Pike (Garner) is kidnapped in neutral Lisbon and taken to Nazi Germany. While he is unconscious, his hair is partially dyed gray and a compound is administered to make his eyesight blurry in an elaborate scheme to make him believe that he has been suffering from amnesia and that it is 1950, five years after the end of the war. German-American Major Walter Gerber (Taylor) has been given the job of learning where the imminent D-Day landings will take place; Pike is one of the few who know. In a fake isolated hospital compound, Gerber plays Pike's psychiatrist, assisted by nurse Anna Hedler (Saint).
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The plan works. Pike casually remarks that the Allies stormed the beaches of Normandy on June 5. A little later though, Pike notices a fresh paper cut on his finger, one he got while in Lisbon. Realizing the truth, he enlists Anna, a concentration camp prisoner, to help convince Gruber and SS officer Otto Schack (Werner Peters) that he knew all along, and the information he gave is false. Schack, who was skeptical of Gruber's methods all along, is convinced, but Gruber is not so sure. When nothing happens on the 5th (in real life, the invasion was scheduled for that day, but had to be postponed due to bad weather), Gruber is discredited.

Gruber plays another trick; Pike falls for it and thinks it is several hours later than it actually is. Assuming the landings are already underway, Pike confirms he was telling the truth. Certain that Schack will shift the blame to him, Gruber helps Pike and Anna escape, asking only that they take along his research papers for future peaceful uses. After they leave, he swallows poison.

The couple find a genially corrupt border guard (John Banner, better known for playing Sgt. Schultz on Hogan's Heroes) who will get them into nearby Switzerland for a price. Schack catches them, but the guard shoots him dead.

Best part of story, including ending: It's a well done, highly plausible plot.

Best scene in story: The scene where the border guard explains his philosophy of life is rather amusing.

Opinion about the main character: Pike is quite the blabbermouth (twice), but Garner has more than enough charm to pull it off.

The review of this Movie prepared by J. Lee a Level 10 Peregrine Falcon scholar

Script Analysis of 36 Hours

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Plot & Themes

Composition of Book Actual chase scenes or violence 20%Planning/preparing, gather info, debate puzzles/motives 30%Feelings, relationships, character bio/development 50% Time/Era of Movie:    -   1930's-1950's War Thriller    -   Yes Armed Forces:    -   Army Specific to    -   WW II POW movie?    -   Yes

Main Character

Identity:    -   Male Profession/status:    -   infantry soldier Age:    -   20's-30's Ethnicity/Nationality    -   White (American)


Europe    -   Yes European country:    -   Germany

Writing Style

Accounts of torture and death?    -   non-gory references to death/punishment

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