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The Heroes of Telemark (1965)

6.4
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Ratings: 6.4/10 from 4,275 users  
Reviews: 45 user | 14 critic

Norwegian resistance tries to stop German troops to produce an atomic bomb component during WW2. Based on a true story.

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(screenplay), (screenplay), 2 more credits »
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Title: The Heroes of Telemark (1965)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Rolf
...
Knut
...
Anna
...
Uncle
David Weston ...
Arne
Sebastian Breaks ...
Gunnar
John Golightly ...
Freddy
...
Oli
Patrick Jordan ...
Henrik
William Marlowe ...
Claus
...
Einar
...
Jensen
Anton Diffring ...
Major Frick
Ralph Michael ...
Nilssen
Eric Porter ...
Terboven
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Storyline

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 Peter Grosvenor

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The stakes were the biggest the world has ever known. See more »

Genres:

Action | Drama | History | War

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

| |

Release Date:

14 January 1966 (Ireland)  »

Also Known As:

Anthony Mann's The Heroes of Telemark  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$5,600,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Color:

(archive footage)| (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

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 »

Goofs

After shooting Jensen, Dr. Pedersen tucks his pistol into his belt with the grip to the right. When the German doctor lifts his jacket, revealing the pistol, the grip is to the left. See more »

Quotes

[Knut hands a revolver to Rolf who looks rather shocked to be given it]
Knut: [humourously] You know what to do? Press this little thing here and the bullets come out there.
See more »

Connections

Version of Kampen om tungtvannet (1948) See more »

Soundtracks

Wir fahren gegen Engeland
(uncredited)
Music by Herms Niel
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

See it for the action, not the history.
12 November 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This is a British Movie that received the Hollywierd treatment.One of my many peeves is "historical " movies that hoke things up, make things up, change things around. The real story is far more exciting and dramatic, why fictionalize it. The first attempt at attacking the Norsk Hydro plant, "Operation Freshman", a British glider commando raid, ended in disaster, one tow plane crashed killing its crew and commandos, the other glider crashed, those who weren't killed in the crash were captured and shot by the Gestapo under Hitler's "Commando Order" which authorized the execution of Allied commandos even when they were in uniform. An attempt by the USAAF to destroy the Norsk Hydro plant from the air failed, the British then turned to the Norwegian section of SOE. eight of them attacked the plant, did tremendous damage, escaped without loss. The Germans then decided to move the heavy water and its production equipment to Germany, it was American born Knut Haukelid and an another Norwegian who planted the charges than sank the ferry Hydro and defeated the Germans' attempt to build an atom bomb. I am not sure why the Norsk Hydro plant made heavy water, there were no Norwegian atomic scientists at the time. Nuclear physics was still a very theoretical subject. As with so many movies, see it for the action, then read the history. Best part of the movie is the portrayal of the sinking of the Hydro.


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