Generally, I like this movie. it’s simple, moves quickly, and is well acted. A good WWII movie.
One thing I’ve never really understood is the role of the narrator, Cookie. Every POW in this camp was a SGT, so unless you were named “barracks chief” or “security officer”, rank mattered little. However Cookie, was your basic, standard Toady. He did the bidding for Sefton all day, every day for a small fee, whether it be cigarettes, or whatever. I always thought the role was a pathetic one, since he had no friends in the barracks and is looked down upon by most if not all members of the barracks. I think he’s a good choice for narrator, since he bridges the two conflicting worlds of the barracks: Sefton, and those that suspect him of being the spy.
But as a realistic character, it doesn’t work for me on any angle. He’s supposed to be the same rank as Sefton, yet the relationship is more like private to Sgt. It just doesn’t seem possible to me that one SGT POW would be so submissive to another SGT POW. It seemed to reflect more a relationship of protection, where Sefton would keep guys away from Cookie if rape was an issue. This would make sense in a prison setting perhaps, but not in a military POW camp. To become a SGT one would have to be a leader. Granted, there are different levels of Sgt’s based on stripes, and rank follows within the Sgt rank (whoever is higher during the war is higher within the confines of the POW camp.) But Cookie was a Sgt. before being captured, and would have never behaved this way before caught.
So, is this role believable to any of you? I am especially interested in comments from military and ex-military that have seen the movie.