During Napoleon's victorious campaign in Germany, the city of Kolberg gets isolated from the retreating Prussian forces. The population of Kolberg refuses to capitulate and organizes the ...
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During Napoleon's victorious campaign in Germany, the city of Kolberg gets isolated from the retreating Prussian forces. The population of Kolberg refuses to capitulate and organizes the resistance against the French army, which immediately submits the city to massive bombardments. Written by
Eduardo Casais <email@example.com>
In the movie Kolberg is portrayed as a city that didn't surrender to France and which France stopped bombing after an order from Napoleon. However, in real life the bombing stopped after the declaration of peace in Tiflis, which was ordered by Prussian King Friedrich Wilhelm III. Soon after that Gneisenau ordered the bombing to stop and raised the white flags. One hour later Goison did the same. The details of the cease-fire had been discussed between Gneisenau and Loison. See more »
[after Gneisenau asks Nettelbeck to surrender]
You weren't born in Kolberg, Gneisenau. You are put here to Kolberg. But we grew up here. We know every stone, every corner every house here. We don't let go. Even if we have to claw in the ground of our city with our nails, we don't let go. First they have to cut off each of our hands or kill us one after the other. Gneisenau, you can't put the whole disgrace on an old man like me. and to give our city to Napoleon. I even promised our king: rather ...
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There are some mistakes in the other reviews, which I would like to correct. "Kolberg" is by no means the last film of the Third Reich. The film production kept on going until April 23 in Berlin-Babelsberg, and as long as the early days of May in Prag, the last major colour film shot being "Shiva und die Galgenblume". Until that time there were about 90 films being either completed or shot in the Prag studios. If you want to find out the really "last" film, perhaps you should check out Käutner's absolutely beautiful "Under the Bridges", which didn't pass censorship in March 1945. But I'm not sure even that was the last completed film. Amazon.de sells about 6 different films on DVD which are marked as completed in 1945 (Frech und Verliebt, Monte Miracolo, Peter Voss - Millionendieb, Fledermaus etc.) Plus there are several, which were completed in 1945, but released only after the war.
Then, Kolberg hadn't fallen when this film premiered in Berlin and La Rochelle (which, perhaps inspired by the film, capitulated only two days after Germany had fallen). Kolberg was finally abandoned on March, 18.
There is a beautiful restored print sold by the International Historic Films. It has beautiful colours and a good soundtrack, plus some extras. This film can be watched - and indeed enjoyed - as a work of art, unless you absolutely want to read propaganda into it. Sure, it was made as an ultimate propaganda vehicle, but as a viewer I am permitted to distance myself from the politics and see this film as a cinematic near masterpiece. We know, that it was radically edited in January 1945, since Dr Goebbels found it to be too bloody, "nearly pacifistic". Every trace of human suffering (aside from the lame love intrigue) was removed, and that's probably what makes this film uneven and jumpy at times. What the director's cut could have looked like, we can only guess.
Politics and propaganda are as important today as they were back then. It's important to remember the atrocities of war and the crimes of Nazist regime. But a film starts living its own life since the moment it's completed, and we are stupid if we fail to recognize its merits merely because we know, that we are supposed to be blind to them.
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