The Roth family leads a quiet life in a small village in the German Alps during the early 1930s. When the Nazis come to power, the family is divided and Martin Brietner, a family friend is caught up in the turmoil.
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Interesting to note that the film was made in 1940, one year before America's entry into the European war against Hitler. The movie depicts Germany in 1933. In 1938 the 'night of broken glass' took place. Interesting to note the attitudes portrayed in the film, definitely anti-Nazi.Written by
At the start of the movie, Prof. Roth (Frank Morgan) is experiencing his 60th birthday. In fact, when Frank Morgan filmed that scene he was closer to his 50th birthday and unfortunately did not live in real life to see his 60th. See more »
In the beginning of the film it is morning but the maid says that "the telegrams have been coming all day long". See more »
[white clouds appear; they quickly turn to storm clouds]
When man was new upon the earth, he was frightened by the dangers of the elements. He cried out, "The gods of the lightning are angry, and I must kill my fellow man to appease them!" As man grew bolder, he created shelters against the wind and the rain and made harmless the force of the lightning. But within man himself were elements strong as the wind and terrible as the lightning. And he denied the existence of these ...
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When Hitler saw this movie he banned all MGM films from Nazi occupied Europe. That is how powerful this movie is. Top notch acting and high production values augment this thought provoking script about life in nazi Germany for an average family. Very final scene with a young Robert Stack and his brother is chilling. The message of this film of standing up against adversity and what you believe in, is as fresh today as in 1940 when this film was released. Cast is marvelous with a toss up between Jimmy Stewart and Frank Morgan (who played the wizard in Oz the year before) to who steals the film. But then everyone is good in this. Robert Young plays against type as an preppy evil Nazi. Interesting note: German Ambassador to US asked Louis B Mayer to "think twice" about releasing this movie. Thankfully he only thought once. See this you will not be disappointed.
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