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The Sorrow and the Pity (1969)
"Le chagrin et la pitié" (original title)

8.4
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Ratings: 8.4/10 from 2,422 users  
Reviews: 30 user | 31 critic

From 1940 to 1944, France's Vichy government collaborated with Nazi Germany. Marcel Ophüls mixes archival footage with 1969 interviews of a German officer and of collaborators and ... See full summary »

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 6 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Credited cast:
Georges Bidault ...
Himself
Matthäus Bleibinger ...
Himself - Wehrmacht Soldier in the Auvergne (as Mathaus Bleibinger)
Charles Braun
Maurice Buckmaster ...
Himself - Former Head of the British Underground
Emile Coulaudon ...
Himself - Former Head of the Auvergne Maquis
Emmanuel d'Astier de la Vigerie ...
Himself - Founder of the Liberation Movement
René de Chambrun ...
Himself - International Lawyer (as Count René de Chambrun)
Christian de la Mazière ...
Himself - Aristocratic Former Nazi
Darquier de Pellepoix ...
Himself - Handshake with Heydrich (archive footage)
Jacques Doriot ...
Himself - Head of the French Popular Party, 1942 (archive footage)
R. Du Jonchay ...
Himself - Head of the Resistance Movement (as Colonel R. du Jonchay)
Jacques Duclos ...
Himself - Former Secretary of the Clandestine Communist Party
Anthony Eden ...
(as Lord Avon)
Sgt. Evans
Marcel Fouche-Degliame ...
Himself - Director of the Combat Movement (as Marcel Degliame-Fouche)
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Storyline

From 1940 to 1944, France's Vichy government collaborated with Nazi Germany. Marcel Ophüls mixes archival footage with 1969 interviews of a German officer and of collaborators and resistance fighters from Clermont-Ferrand. They comment on the nature, details and reasons for the collaboration, from anti-Semitism, xenophobia, and fear of Bolsheviks, to simple caution. Part one, "The Collapse," includes an extended interview with Pierre Mendès-France, jailed for anti-Vichy action and later France's Prime Minister. At the heart of part two, "The Choice," is an interview with Christian de la Mazière, one of 7,000 French youth to fight on the eastern front wearing German uniforms. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »
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Details

Language:

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Release Date:

25 March 1972 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Sorrow and the Pity  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

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Did You Know?

Trivia

According to the book 'Picture this! - a guide to over 300 environmentally, socially, and politically relevant films and videos ' by Sky Hiatt, this movie details how Adolf Hitler " . . . controlled the film industry [in German occupied World War II France], producing odious propaganda disguised as art. These films - often presented as French-made - promoted the vision of German heroes cleaning up the anarchy of France. Many featured the execution of Jews guilty of violating racial purity laws with French nationals. But while many boycotted the film industry and thousands went underground to work with the resistance, others gave in to the occupation." See more »

Quotes

Dr. Claude Levy: France is the only government in all Europe whose government collaborated. Others signed an armistice or surrendered, but France was the only country to have collaborated and voted laws which were even more racist than the Nuremberg laws, as the French racist criteria were even more demanding than the German racist criteria. It's not something to be proud of.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Ugly Betty: Zero Worship (2008) See more »

Soundtracks

to 'Triumph over France'"
Written by Grigory Kaputnikov (pseudo-name Siegfried Karl Schlegelmeyer)
(heard in footage when Hitler cames to Paris)
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User Reviews

 
Stunning, enlightening and unforgettable!
22 November 2001 | by (Arlington, Texas) – See all my reviews

If you are a movie buff, you have probably gotten the impression from the bulk of movies about WWII that the French populace as a whole fought bravely to resist the Nazi Occupation. "The Sorrow and the Pity" makes it clear that such was not the case. This stunning documentary includes interviews from people from all shades of the spectrum politically, philosophically and socially. The interviewers did a great job of coaxing the truth from these people by being friendly rather than confrontational. Some of the most amazing footage is from German newsreels, with the ghastly "pure race" prejudices being illustrated with a very sarcastic commentary on some of the French prisoners of war. I think that every high school student in The United States should see this film so that they understand that you can't always just " go along to get long". Of course, with the average high school student's attention span, it would have to be shown in shorter installments. This film is completely worthwhile and never boring!


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