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Shattered City: The Halifax Explosion (2003)

TV Movie  |   |  Drama, History  |  19 February 2005 (Hungary)
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Ratings: 6.8/10 from 251 users  
Reviews: 18 user | 2 critic

A true story about the tragic explosion at Halifax Harbour, Canada, in the early hours of December 6, 1917.


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Title: Shattered City: The Halifax Explosion (TV Movie 2003)

Shattered City: The Halifax Explosion (TV Movie 2003) on IMDb 6.8/10

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Cast overview, first billed only:
Captain Charlie Collins
Dr. Barbara Paxton
Francis Mackey
Beatrix Collins
Ernest 'Ernst' Masterson
Constance 'Connie' Collins
Courtney 'Court' Collins
Paul Doucet ...
Captain Le Medec
Millicent Collins
Richard Donat ...
Patrick Collins
Sergeant Sam Barlow
Capt. Horatio Brannen
Naval Officer McNabb
Leon Pownall ...
Commander Frederick Wyatt
Graham Harley ...
Mr. Cleese


Shattered City, an epic two-part mini-series, dramatizes a compelling piece of Canadian history. It is the story of how a tragic incident at the height of the First World War became a living metaphor for the worldwide conflict, and how Halifax arose from the ashes after severe destruction and devastation. In the early hours of December 6, 1917, the Mont Blanc, a French-owned freighter loaded to the gunnel's with thousands of tons of TNT, collided with a Belgian relief ship and exploded in the Halifax Harbour. The explosion was so vast that it killed more than 2,000 people, injured 9,000 more and completely flattened two square kilometers of northern Halifax. The series settles mostly on one family, the Collins, who's eldest son Charlie, a captain in the Royal Canadian Army, who tries to find the rest of his family including his fatally injured father, as well as his mother, and other siblings among the rubble, and later finds himself as a lawyer defending the Mont Blanc's captain, Le ... Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Drama | History


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Release Date:

19 February 2005 (Hungary)  »

Also Known As:

Touchée en plein coeur  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$10,000,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs



Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The explosion occurred at 9:04:35 local time. See more »


Although a Canadian Red Ensign served as the national flag during WWI, it was not the version with the national coat of arms shown. That one did not become common until the 1920s. The 1917 version had a sort of oval crest containing several provincial coats of arms. See more »

Crazy Credits

This film is dedicated to the spirit and the memory of Constance "Connie" Bond Young August 9, 1911 - February 22, 2003 See more »


Followed by City of Ruins: The Halifax Explosion (2003) See more »

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User Reviews

CBC robs us of the truth
28 October 2003 | by (Vancouver, Canada) – See all my reviews

The Halifax Explosion was a turning point in Canadian history. It shook a young country, but left it stronger, if not more sober.

The CBC's "Shattered City" uses fiction to tell the story of the Halifax Explosion. Some of the actors put in good performances, although many are stiff. My major grievance is with the use of fiction. The viewer is not able to discern truth from fantasy. In fact, at the film's conclusion, a short clip shows the actors explaining they had not ever learned anything about the Hfx Explosion. This may be true for many Canadians, as well as people in other countries. The story has little to teach us, because it fails to recognize the greatness of the real story.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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Not necessarily a true story. skycladgirl-1
Great movie! HfxGal
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