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Monday, January 27, 2020

Bogart's Oasis

Sahara (Zoltan Korda, 1943) is a taut, well-crafted war flick with a fiendishly simple but incredibly effective plot: a ragtag mixture of Allied tank crew and medics are nearly surrounded by Nazi forces in Libya, with only one way to escape: through the unforgiving sands of the Sahara desert. With water already in desperately short supply, they encounter a Sudanese soldier with an Italian prisoner and shoot down a Nazi pilot, further stretching their resources. Humphrey Bogart is the tough sergeant who has to make the even tougher decisions about their shared predicament, and in the end there's a very well-staged last stand at an old ruin with the only well for hundreds of miles around. The thrilling climax is a true surprise, but it's earned, and the good guys don't all pull through. Highly recommended.

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