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Charlie Grant's War (1984)

| Drama | TV Movie
A Canadian artist turned diamond merchant in Vienna, Austria risks his life to smuggle Jews out of the Third Reich.

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Cast

Credited cast:
Jean Archambault ...
Andre
Chris Bark ...
David
...
Assistant Commandant
David Bolt ...
Epstein
Peter Boretski ...
Trefius
Linda Callow ...
Choir Singer
Douglas Campbell ...
Manlus
Marigold Charlesworth ...
Mrs. Grant
Joseph Cooper ...
Rabbi
Peter Dvorsky ...
Con Man
Glyn Evans
Michael Fletcher ...
Max Boldt
John Friesen ...
Fritz
Derek Keurvorst ...
Commandant
Janet Land ...
Maid
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Storyline

Charlie Grant was a Canadian in Germany who became a successful diamond merchant with the help of a elderly jewish couple who are his patrons. When the Nazi's come to power, Charlie cannot ignore the fact his Jewish friend's lives are becoming more intolerable. Despite the growing danger, Charlie vows to help as many Jews as possible escape the country using his merchandise for the necessary bribes and connections. However, he gets no help from the Canadian Government which took a bigoted "none is too many" attitude to Jewish immigration. Written by Kenneth Chisholm <kchishol@execulink.com>

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Drama

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Sto dromo tis eleftherias  »

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User Reviews

 
Very moving. I am saddened that it is not played more frequently.

I remember seeing this film as a kid on CBC television and being very touched by it. Pre-Schindler's list, this film examines the life of a Canadian diamond merchant living in Nazi Germany who is caught helping Jewish families escape for which he pays the price. After saving hundreds of lives, Charlie Grant (played wonderfully by R.H. Thomson) is eventually thrown into a concentration camp for his acts of kindness. Even now, 15 some odd years later I can recall the powerful dialogue. Grant delivers a moving verbal slap in the face to a Nazi officer demanding to know why he bothers with the lives of "filthy Jews"...to which he replies he would rather commune with "filthy Jews, than with the likes of you". Eventually the camps are of course liberated, but not before the Nazi's shoot down the remaining barely surviving inmates. Grant somehow escapes this fate and is picked up by incoming Allied forces staggering down a muddy road babbling in German and then English, "I am Canadian...I am Canadian". I still get a lump thinking of it, and I am forced to wonder why this film doesn't get more play especially around Canada's Remembrance Day (Veterans Day). It would help to appreciate the efforts of those heroes who DID help, and maybe assist in alleviating some of the shame of our Government's blind eye given to Jewish immigrants during WWII. All that aside a wonderfully inspirational film...moving, and worth sitting through the heartache of the subject.


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