But back in the day, I loved watching movies.* One of my favorite movies of all time has to be "The Great Escape." It has adventure, camaraderie and best of all, it is based on a true story of Allied prisoners tunneling out of a German prisoner of war camp. (My UK readers will accurately note that it is dramatized, and the role of American military personnel in breaking out of Stalag Luft III was wildly exaggerated.)
It also contains a favorite scene of chemistry from the movies. It hass two of the movie's stars, Steve McQueen and James Garner**, hiding away from the other prisoners and doing a bit of fermentation chemistry with some potatoes. Best yet, they're doing a distillation....
What do I love about this scene?
- The dramatic wait for the forerun from a distillation
- The in-process check to determine product quality
- How the successful in-process check inspires them to work harder at starting material preparation (I wish I could bottle the feeling of a first successful in-process check of a pilot run.)
- The chirpy, whimsical music throughout (I need this while running TLCs or HPLCs.)
** FWIW, my favorite characters from the movie are neither Hilts nor Hendley, but the forger Blythe and Velinski, the Polish tunneler.