The Elusive Corporal

Director: Jean Renoir
Year Released: 1962
Rating: 3.0

A French Corporal (Jean-Pierre Cassel) tries to escape again and again and again (and again...) from his German captors during WWII but keeps getting caught - at first it seems to be a Sisyphean struggle, but tenacity can sometimes be rewarding. This appears to be a testament to the determination of the French people despite so much upheaval and conflict - it's also (like Wilder's Stalag 17) not afraid to be light-hearted on occasion, as the P.O.W.s weren't treated like the victims in the concentration camps. Renoir also sneaks in a comment about how being prisoners makes everyone equal in both military rank and social rank, which benefits those - like the waiter - who lack prestige in their regular lives.