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fa404748

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A hero of the French Resistance in WW2, 13 April 2012

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This documentary is the story of a hero of the French Resistance, Raymond Aubrac, told by himself. He was born as Raymond Samuel on July 31, 1914 in the French city of Vesoul. He studied on a grant in Harvard in 1937, worked as a civil engineer and married in 1939 Lucie Bernard. An officer in the French Army, he was captured by the Germans in 1940 but escaped. In 1940, the Aubracs (their wartime pseudonym) joined the opposition against the Nazis and the collaborating Vichy-regime. Raymond was one of the founders of the Resistance movement Libération-Sud. On June 21, 1943 Raymond, General De Gaulle's delegate Jean Moulin and other important figures of the Resistance were arrested and tortured in Lyon by the notorious Gestapo-chief Klaus Barbie. The pregnant Lucie Aubrac organized the incredible escape of her husband and 13 other companions on November 21, 1943. In 1944, the Aubracs escaped to London. When the Provence was liberated, De Gaulle appointed Aubrac as Commissaire de la république (governor) in Marseille (till the end of 1944). The movie is a very interesting mix of interviews with the then 95 years old but very lucid Aubrac and old images (photographs and newsreels). Lucie Aubrac died in 2007, aged 94. Raymond died in Paris on April 10, 2012, aged 97.

7 out of 7 people found the following review useful:
A WW2 tragedy, 4 April 2012

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

On 20th of October 1941, three young communists shoot the German commander Hotz in the French port of Nantes. As a reprisal and deterrent, a furious Hitler orders the execution of a hundred prisoners, mostly communists and resisters. Among them, the 17 year old Guy Môquet, the son of a communist member of Parliament. This real story, focusing on Môquet and his friends in the detainee camp, shows the conflicting interests between the German high commander Von Stülpnagel and his entourage in France (the famous writer Ernst Jünger), Berlin, and the puppet regime of Vichy (and the ambiguous role of the French police). A very moving and historical accurately told story.

9 out of 9 people found the following review useful:
A village makes a movie, 12 August 2011

What started as a crazy wager between friends, ended up as a full movie, created and acted by the whole population of the friendly Flemish village of Schellebelle. The renowned actor Heldenbergh (who at the time lived in that village) wrote the scenario and directed, together with the mayor K. Taylor, who happens to be a professional director.

The movie tells the story of the farming family Van de Velde, in the aftermath of the First World War. The farmer and his son, who have fought in the trenches of the Yser, are still missing in 1919, and the mother has died, so the eldest daughter Coralie runs the farm now on her own. She has welcomed 25 orphans during the war, but the Child Welfare Commission wants to put them in an orphanage. And some local notables with a sneaky plan want to take possession of the farm. But Coralie and the orphans fight back...

I found the movie entertaining and sometimes even moving: quite an achievement of all those nonprofessional actors (the rare professionals play some minor roles).