The film "Lawrence Of Arabia" conveys the complex life and exploits of an eccentric, rebellious, desert-loving, masochistic, Oxford-bred British officer who aided the Arabian Bedouins against the Turks during World War I. The Arabian Desert functions as a beautiful and majestic backdrop for nearly all of Lawrence's exploits. The film focuses on the major events in Lawrence's life, all of which are told in flashback form. The events include: the conquest of Aqaba, Lawrence's capture and torture in Deraa, and the anti-climactic fall of Damascus.
Lawrence's main mission in the beginning of the film is a dangerous adventure in which Lawrence travels the desert trying to "find Prince Feisal" and serve as an emissary/liaison between the British and the Arabs. At the encampment of Prince Feisal, Lawrence was to investigate the progress of the Arab Revolt against Constantinople and to appraise the strength of the fragmented Arab tribes for the British Political Bureau. After a nomadic Bedouin leads Lawrence across the sweeping desert sand dunes, he runs into Sheik Sherif Ali Ibn el Kharish while taking water out of his drinking well. Later on, he meets up with Ali and the rest of his tribe and decides to travel with them. Once Lawrence meets up with Ali and his Arab tribe, he makes an immediate impact on them all. As they began to reach the end of the desert, it was noticed that Gasim's camel was rider less, and Lawrence unhesitatingly proposes going back for him. In a triumphant sequence, the heroic and courageous Lawrence retraces his steps, finds the half-dead Gasim, rescues him, and returns to the camp with Gasim riding on the back of his camel. After this mission, Lawrence immediately gained the respect of Ali and all of his tribe members. It seemed as though this caused Lawrence to adopt a new image and caused the entire Arab tribe to now look at him as a leader.
Lawrence's capture and torture in Deraa serves as somewhat of a turning point in Lawrence's attitude through the duration of the film for reasons that include his concern with the possibility that he is masochistic.