IMDb > The Sorrow and the Pity (1969)
Le chagrin et la pitié
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The Sorrow and the Pity (1969) More at IMDbPro »Le chagrin et la pitié (original title)

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The Sorrow and the Pity -- Open-ended Trailer from Milestone

Overview

User Rating:
8.4/10   2,454 votes »
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Down 53% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Director:
Writers:
André Harris (writer)
Marcel Ophüls (writer)
Contact:
View company contact information for The Sorrow and the Pity on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
25 March 1972 (USA) See more »
Genre:
Plot:
From 1940 to 1944, France's Vichy government collaborated with Nazi Germany. Marcel Ophüls mixes archival... See more » | Full synopsis »
Awards:
Nominated for Oscar. Another 6 wins & 1 nomination See more »
NewsDesk:
(22 articles)
Film Review: ‘Ain’t Misbehavin”
 (From Variety - Film News. 17 February 2014, 11:37 AM, PST)

Top 10 documentaries
 (From The Guardian - Film News. 12 November 2013, 12:18 AM, PST)

Top 20 Alternative Picks for Tiff 2013: Marcel Ophüls’ Ain’t Misbehavin’
 (From ioncinema. 2 September 2013, 9:00 AM, PDT)

User Reviews:
Still So Relevant Today See more (31 total) »

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 ... (also archive footage) (as Lord Avon)
Sgt. Evans
Marcel Fouche-Degliame ... Himself - Director of the Combat Movement (as Marcel Degliame-Fouche)
Raphael Geminiani ... Himself - Champion Professional Cyclist
Alexis Grave
Louis Grave ... Himself - Resistance Fighter
Marius Klein
Georges Lamirand ... Himself - Minister of Youth, 1941-43
Pierre Laval ... Himself - French Minister of State (archive footage)
Pierre Le Calvez ... Himself - Theater Owner
Mr. Leiris ... Himself - Former Mayor of Combronde
Claude Levy ... Himself - Author and Biologist (as Dr. Claude Levy)
Pierre Mendès-France ... Himself - Former Prime Minister of France
Cmdt. Menut
Elmar Michel
Mr. Mioche ... Himself - Hotelier in Royat
Marcel Ophüls ... Interviewer
Denis Rake ... Himself - British Secret Agent
Henri Rochat ... Himself - Defense Lawyer
Paul Schmidt
Mme. Solange ... Herself - Beautician
Edward Spears ... Himself
Helmut Tausend ... Himself - Former Wehrmacht Captain (as Helmuth Tausend)
Roger Tounze
Marcel Verdier
Walter Warlimont
Junie Astor ... Herself (archive footage) (uncredited)
René Bousquet ... Himself - with Laval (archive footage) (uncredited)

Maurice Chevalier ... Himself - Denies Making Tour of Germany (archive footage) (uncredited)

Danielle Darrieux ... Herself (archive footage) (uncredited)
Charles de Gaulle ... Himself (archive footage) (uncredited)
Suzy Delair ... Herself (archive footage) (uncredited)
Reinhard Heydrich ... Himself (archive footage) (uncredited)

Albert Préjean ... Himself (archive footage) (uncredited)
Philippe Pétain ... Himself (archive footage) (uncredited)
Viviane Romance ... Herself (archive footage) (uncredited)

Directed by
Marcel Ophüls 
 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
André Harris  writer
Marcel Ophüls  writer

Produced by
André Harris .... producer
Alain de Sedouy .... producer
 
Cinematography by
André Gazut 
Jürgen Thieme 
 
Film Editing by
Claude Vajda 
 
Production Management
Wolfgang Theile .... production director
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Claude Vajda .... assistant director
 
Sound Department
Bernard Migy .... sound
Wolfgang Schroeter .... sound mixer
 
Camera and Electrical Department
Alain Demartines .... assistant camera
 
Editorial Department
Heidi Endruwelt .... assistant editor
Wiebke Vogler .... assistant editor
 
Other crew
Woody Allen .... presenter (2000 version)
Suzy Benhiat .... documentarist: UK
Eliane Cochi .... documentarist: France (as Eliane Filippi)
Christoph Derschau .... documentarist: Germany
 

Production CompaniesDistributors

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Le chagrin et la pitié" - France (original title)
See more »
Runtime:
251 min
Language:
Sound Mix:

Did You Know?

Trivia:
Originally intended for French television but broadcasters refused to show it.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 »
Movie Connections:

FAQ

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33 out of 36 people found the following review useful.
Still So Relevant Today, 1 June 2004
Author: Chris Bright from London

I've just seen this at the National Film Theatre.

I concur with most of the comments from the other users. Certainly Ophuls' directorial hand is evident throughout, the editing, cutting, juxtaposition, reaction shots etc are all part of the construction of his argument, although his interviewees are obviously allowed to account for themselves at some length.

What I found most surprising was the amount of humour in the film. Because of Woody Allen's use of it in "Annie Hall" I thought it would be gruelling, but there were a number of laugh out loud moments, starting with the resistance leader whose main stated reason for fighting the Germans was that they were monopolising the best meat.

Emmanuel d'Astier de la Vigerie was also a total star. His comment about the sociological make-up of the Resistance - essentially misfits and malcontents, people with nothing to lose - was very telling. A number of other interviewees made similar points - the main collaborators were the bourgeoisie - the resistance was mainly based on workers, peasants, communists, youth and weirdos of various sorts. Compare that with the sitation in the '60s when the film was made and with the situation now in the western democracies.

Anthony Eden was another major surprise. The popular image of him now is of a buffoon, the man who screwed up Suez, but in the extended interview here he displays immense charisma, intelligence and humanity. And if they make a film of his life Jeremy Irons is a shoo-in for the role.

The Nazis, meanwhile, are clearly cut from the same cloth as the neo-fascists presently enjoying something of a resurgence in most of Europe. All the same arguments made in exactly the same way by the same sort of people. This (plus the smugness of the former Wehrmacht officer still wearing his medals) was probably the most chilling thing about the film.

The final obvious resonance is with Iraq. From the German soldiers baffled and outraged by the fact that some French were trying to kill them, to the French establishment referring to the Resistance as terrorists, (yes that was the exact word they used), to the initial acceptance of the Occupation turning to hatred as reprisals against the Resistance grew, many testimonies throw a radically new light on the present situation. To draw direct parallels would be a mistake - even the Gaullists were not as reactionary as Zarqawi or Muqtada al Sadr - but nonetheless there is a lot to learn from then about now, and about the difference between how events are perceived at the time and by History.

Another user comment complains about the amount of politics in the film. It's true that some knowledge is presupposed and the film would obviously mean more to those who lived through those times. However Ophuls has said that one of his main motivations was to show that the idea that you can divorce politics from everyday life is exactly what made collaboration possible.

These are just a few of the thoughts provoked by the film, which holds many more insights and surprises and I am sure repays as many viewings as Alvy Singer gave it. It's perhaps not as shocking or affecting as "Shoah" (on which it's surely the strongest influence) but then it's a different story. It shows us the best of humanity as well as the worst and neither are always where you might expect to find them.

Incidentally, it looks like the reportedly poor quality of the DVD may be down to the original film stock rather than the transfer.

Was the above review useful to you?
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