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Shattered City: The Halifax Explosion (2003)

TV Movie  -   -  Drama | History  -  19 February 2005 (Hungary)
6.8
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Ratings: 6.8/10 from 237 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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Cast

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
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Storyline

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

Genres:

Drama | History

Certificate:

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Parents Guide:

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Details

Official Sites:

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Release Date:

19 February 2005 (Hungary)  »

Also Known As:

Touchée en plein coeur  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$10,000,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

|

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

As of June 2004, the Halifax Explosion still holds the record for being the largest man-made (though inadvertent), non-nuclear explosion in history. See more »

Goofs

There is a scene at the railway station in which a rail car carries the old CNR logo (A maple leaf with a box inside it containing the words "Canadian National Railways"). The CNR was formed in 1923. 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 »

Connections

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

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User Reviews

A Powerful Retelling of a Forgotten Tale
28 October 2003 | by (Fort Smith, NT) – See all my reviews

Shattered City is a highly enjoyable retelling of an almost forgotten event in Canadian history. I am from Halifax, and for me, the sight of the ships exploding in the harbour was a visceral experience. The blast, which occurred in December, 1917, was the largest man-made explosion before Hiroshima, killed 2000 people instantly and vaporized two square miles of the city of Halifax.

I could have done without some of the more soap opera-like elements of it, but in all, I was engaged by the characters and moved by their horrendous plight. Although plagued by a low budget($10 million), the show did an excellent job of recreating wartime Halifax and the harbour, and the people felt authentic as they went about their daily lives.

This film is highly recommended for anyone who enjoys a good story of human courage and drama, and is a must-see for any fan of Canadian history.

Postscript: I now live in northern Canada, and watched the show with a group of westerners and northerners. None of them had heard of the Halifax Explosion. What a sad commentary on our woefully provincial education systems and on our ability to tell our own stories.


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

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