I pressed the ‘play’ button and got…

Rescue Dawn.

Why Rescue Dawn? The name bears no relevance to the film which is about Dieter Dengler, a Luftwaffe US pilot who was downed over Laos during the secret bombing campaign the Americans were conducting, and captured. He finds that others have been taken prisoner before him and, being an outsized Hitler Youth Boy Scout, plans to escape. He more or less organises and executes the whole thing himself, his fellow prisoners being apathetic or basket cases.

Eventually, after a lot of trekking, Dengler is finally spotted and rescued. His ordeal is not quite over because the members of his squadron spring him from a CIA hospital where he is being quizzed about his time in captivity.

Christian Bale plays Dengler as a little bit Forrest Gump. He’s resourceful, but gormless, which immures him to just how risky his escape attempt is. The captors are given names, but they have no characters beyond the de­scriptions the prisoners give them.

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