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TO END ALL WARS
USA: Argyll Film Partners
Cast: Robert Carlyle, Kiefer Sutherland, Ciaran McMenamin, Mark Strong, Sakae Kimura, Masayuki Yui, James Cosmo, John Gregg, Shu Nakajima, Yugo Saso, Pip Torrens, Adam Sinclair, Winton Nicholson, Greg Ellis, James McCarthy, Brendan Cowell, Tracy Anderson, Duff Armour, Sergio Alarcon, Jonathon Chapman, Christopher White, Jeremy Pippin, Dennis Ihara, Robert Jobe, Richard Lafond Jr, Robert Lee, Daryl Bonilla, Clyde Yamashita, Joji Yoshida, Ernest Gordon, Richard Joseph Lafond Jr, Takashi Nagase
Director: David L Cunningham
Countries: USA / UK / Thailand
USA: 117 mins
USA Rated: R for strong war violence and for some language
USA Release Date: 6 December 2002 (Limited Release)
TO END ALL WARS is a true story about four Allied POWs who endure harsh treatment at the hands of their Japanese captors during World War II while being forced to build a railroad through the Burmese jungle. Ultimately they find true freedom by forgiving their enemies.
At the height of World War II, Singapore is invaded by victorious Japanese armed forces. A small group of retreating Allied soldiers, led by Lt. Col. Stuart McLean (James Cosmo), Major Ian Campbell (Robert Carlyle), Captain Ernest Gordon (Ciaran McMenamin), and Lt. Jim Reardon (Kiefer Sutherland), is captured and led to a prison camp deep within the jungles of Burma-Siam.
Upon arriving at the camp the POWs are forced by the Japanese to build a railroad through treacherous jungle wilderness. Escape is their first priority, but when the Japanese Head Guard ruthlessly kills their commanding officer, Colonel McLean, the men are left to themselves without a leader.
Major Campbell, the Colonel's second in command, rises to the challenge and starts planning a suicidal takeover of the camp by the prisoners. His greatest obstacle is loss of morale caused by slave labor, starvation, disease and brutal beatings.
Led by the example of British POW Dusty Miller (Mark Strong), Gordon decides to start a college of liberal arts and a 'church without walls' within the camp. The prisoners begin to regain their dignity and hope, but they are also encouraged to forgive their enemies and sacrifice themselves for their fellow POWs.
Soon Gordon and his school are in conflict with Campbell's planned coup d'etat. The rival values lead to split loyalties within the camp, and reveal that amidst so much physical suffering, the most treacherous war is the one fought within.
TO END ALL WARS is an epic of courage and forgiveness. It's about the triumph of the human spirit over inhumanity, and the journey from the prison of self-survival to the freedom of self-sacrifice.