Set in German-occupied Norway, this is an embellished account of the remarkable efforts of the Norwegian resistance to sabotage the German development of the atomic bomb. Resistance fighter Knut Straud enlists the reluctant physicist Rolf Pedersen in an effort to destroy the German heavy water production plant near the village of Rjukan in rural Telemark. In the process, Pedersen discovers that his ex-wife Anna and her uncle have also joined the resistance. British commandos dispatched to destroy the plant are killed when their glider hits the mountainside at night. An improvised raid by the resistance ends in the partial destruction of the heavy water canisters, but the contingency plans of Reichskommissar Terboven enable the Germans to resume production quickly. Pedersen wants to recommend to London that the Allies bomb the plant. Straud opposes him because of the potential death toll on Norwegian civilians and a fight ensues. They send in separate recommendations, and the air raid ... Written by
The real life World War II missions that this film is based on were conducted by Norwegian members of the British Special Operations Executive (SOE) and resulted in the deaths of thirty British commando soldiers. Some were captured, interrogated, tortured and shot by the Nazi Gestapo whilst some of them died when two gliders crashed during landing in Norway. See more »
Character Anna Pedersen in a couple of scenes is wearing a knitted sweater known as Mariusgenser with characteristic pattern (made for brothers Marius and Stein Eriksen). This pattern was introduced for 1952 Winter Olympics in Oslo, and did not exist at the time of the war. See more »
That is... I must say that is fantastic efficiency!
Don't you ever make the mistake by underrating the Germans. By any means.
By Easter we will not have merely 10000 pounds of heavy water, but 12000 pounds of heavy water.
See more »
THOF offers cheesy German accents and I'm sure a few liberties with historical facts, but for those who nitpick at a Kirk Douglas film made in the mid-60s, keep in mind that it's just that: a simple little mid-60s war film with Kirk Douglas. It is fun, quick, not too talky, and with some very nice snowy scenery. Not dull in spite of its length of 2 hours plus, so what more can one expect from a simplistic little action film? Norwegian viewers might understandably get a little annoyed by the bending of facts, but at least movies about Norway's role in the war were made - which can't be said about Sweden. There will never be a movie about Sweden's fight against the Nazis, and this alone should give the Norwegians some satisfaction...
IMDb states that both shorter (i.e. butchered) versions of THOF were released in Germany. Hmm, I wonder why...
6 of 8 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?