7.5/10
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Hangmen Also Die! (1943)

Approved | | Drama, Film-Noir, Thriller | April 1943 (USA)
After the Nazi administrator of Czechoslovakia is shot, his assassin tries to elude the Gestapo and struggles with his impulse to give himself up as hostages are executed.

Director:

Writers:

(adaptation) (as Bert Brecht), (adaptation) | 1 more credit »
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Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Prof. Stephen Novotny
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Masha Novotny
...
Emil Czaka
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Jan Horak
...
Ludmilla Novotny
...
Mrs. Hellie Novotny
William Roy ...
Beda Novotny (as Billy Roy)
...
...
Tonio Selwart ...
Chief of Gestapo Kurt Haas
...
...
Banya
...
Mrs. Georgia Dvorak
...
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Storyline

On May 27, 1942 the Nazi Reichsprotector of Bohemia/Moravia, the "Hangman" Reinhard Heydrich, died from the bullets of unidentified resistance fighters. Hangmen Also Die is the story of Heydrich's assassination in fictionalized form. It was Bertolt Brecht's only comparatively successful Hollywood project; the money he received allowed him to write "The Visions of Simone Marchand", "Schwyk in the Second World War" and his adaptation of Webster's "The Duchess of Malfi". Hanns Eisler won an Academy Award for his musical score. Written by J.Arnold Free <arnold@mayahtt.ca>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Fritz Lang's masterpiece of intrigue and deception. See more »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

April 1943 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Never Surrender  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

(Turner library print) | (DVD)

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

During the Joseph McCarthy-inspired "Red Scare" era in the 1950s, this was one of the films labeled "subversive" by the HUAC (House Un-American Activities Committee) because it was alleged to have contained dialog that might be construed as pro-communist. Writer John Wexley was even "blacklisted". It wasn't seen again in the United States until the mid-'70s. See more »

Goofs

As the boy (Boda) picks the lock to open the door where Jan is tied up, he dumps the contents of his pockets on to the floor outside the room. Once he gets the door open he immediately goes inside and releases Jan. Once Jan is released, he and the boy rush out of the room but the things are no longer on the floor. See more »

Quotes

Gestapo Insp. Alois Gruber: [Slamming his fist on the table] Miss Novotny, this time you're going to talk!
See more »

Crazy Credits

The end of the film reads "NOT The End". See more »

Connections

Referenced in Inglourious Basterds (2009) See more »

Soundtracks

No Surrender
(uncredited)
Music by Hanns Eisler
Lyrics by Sam Coslow
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Why great directors make great films
5 February 2007 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

The actors in this film made any number of cheesy B movies during the war, but with Berthold Brecht and Fritz Lang behind them they made a movie touching on greatness. Check out the characterizations of Heydrich, the policeman Gruber, and the other Gestapo agents. Walter Brennan as the patriotic father was an odd choice, but maybe I'm being blinded by his later Western sidekick roles. The sets are outstanding. Although obviously on a Hollywood back lot they made a very believable Prague, using in part pre-war travelogue footage of the city. Indoor scenes are excellent. The actors look like they live in a real place, not a cuckooland paradise that most hack directors would give you.


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