14 user 3 critic

The Silver Fleet (1943)

Jaap van Leyden (Sir Ralph Richardson) is in charge of a shipyard in newly occupied Holland. At first he collaborates with the Germans because it is the easiest course to follow. Later, a ... See full summary »


Vernon Sewell (as Vernon Campbell Sewell), Gordon Wellesley


Vernon Sewell (as Vernon Campbell Sewell), Gordon Wellesley


Learn more

More Like This 

Fantasy | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

On a routine flight from Hong-Kong to Japan, a British military transport aircraft's fate may or may not depend on a prophetic nightmare.

Director: Leslie Norman
Stars: Michael Redgrave, Sheila Sim, Alexander Knox
Thriller | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

An English scientist runs away from a research center with an atomic bomb. In a letter sent to the British Prime Minister he threatens to blow up the center of London if the Government ... See full summary »

Directors: John Boulting, Roy Boulting
Stars: Barry Jones, André Morell, Olive Sloane
49th Parallel (1941)
Drama | War | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

A World War II U-boat crew are stranded in northern Canada. To avoid internment, they must make their way to the border and get into the still-neutral U.S.

Director: Michael Powell
Stars: Leslie Howard, Laurence Olivier, Raymond Massey
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

An escaped convict tries to hide out at his former lover's house, but she has since married and is reluctant to help him.

Director: Robert Hamer
Stars: Googie Withers, Jack Warner, John McCallum
Crime | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

After the nurse who declares that a recent surgical death was a murder dies also, an enigmatic Scotland Yard inspector arrives to investigate.

Director: Sidney Gilliat
Stars: Alastair Sim, Sally Gray, Trevor Howard
War | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

True story of a British attempt to trick the enemy into weakening Sicily's defenses before the 1943 attack, using a dead man with faked papers.

Director: Ronald Neame
Stars: Clifton Webb, Gloria Grahame, Robert Flemyng
The Intruder (1953)
Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Ex regimental commander Colonel Merton catches one of his former NCOs burgling his house and investigates to find the reason behind this desperate act.

Director: Guy Hamilton
Stars: Michael Ripper, Jack Hawkins, Hugh Williams
Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Two teachers, man-hungry Doris and restrained Marian, visit the Yorkshire moors a year after friend Evelyn disappeared there. On a stormy night, they take refuge in the isolated cottage of ... See full summary »

Director: Leslie Arliss
Stars: James Mason, Wilfrid Lawson, Mary Clare
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

In UK, after pulling a racetrack robbery, repeat offender Johnny Bannion hides the loot in a farmer's field but the police and the local mob come looking for Johnny and for the money.

Director: Joseph Losey
Stars: Stanley Baker, Sam Wanamaker, Grégoire Aslan
The Way Ahead (1944)
Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

World War II drama that follows a group of British draftees, starting with their rigorous basic training, and ending with their deployment in North Africa.

Director: Carol Reed
Stars: David Niven, Stanley Holloway, James Donald
The Avengers (1942)
Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

Horse race tipster and journalist Colin Metcalfe is picked for the job of foreign correspondent in Norway when Hitler invades Poland. On the way to Norway his boat is attacked by a German ... See full summary »

Director: Harold French
Stars: Hugh Williams, Griffith Jones, Deborah Kerr
War | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

In 1940, a concentration-camp escapee assumes the identity of a dead British officer, only to become a prisoner of war.

Director: Basil Dearden
Stars: Michael Redgrave, Rachel Kempson, Frederick Leister


Cast overview, first billed only:
Ralph Richardson ... Jaap van Leyden
Googie Withers ... Helène van Leyden
Esmond Knight ... von Schiffer
Beresford Egan Beresford Egan ... Krampf
Frederick Burtwell Frederick Burtwell ... Captain Müller
Kathleen Byron ... Schoolmistress
Willem Akkerman ... Willem van Leyden
Dorothy Gordon ... Janni Peters
Charles Victor Charles Victor ... Bastiaan Peters
John Longden ... Jost Meertens
Joss Ambler Joss Ambler ... Cornelis Smit
Margaret Emden Margaret Emden ... Bertha
George Schelderup George Schelderup ... Dirk
Neville Mapp Neville Mapp ... Joop
Ivor Barnard ... Admiral


Jaap van Leyden (Sir Ralph Richardson) is in charge of a shipyard in newly occupied Holland. At first he collaborates with the Germans because it is the easiest course to follow. Later, a child's rhyme reminds him of his patriotic duty, but how best to resist the Nazis without endangering his wife and fellow workers? Written by Steve Crook <steve@brainstorm.co.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


DANGERS OF DEVOTION! to a woman DISGRACE! to a man DISHONOR! See more »


Drama | War


See all certifications »






Release Date:

1 July 1945 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Srebrna flota See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


This opening prologue is a quotation from writer John Webster (1580?-1634) from his play The Duchess of Malfi, Act IV, Scene 2. It states: "I know death hath ten thousand several doors. For men to take their exits." See more »


Jaap van Leyden: The truth is that a Nation will only live as long as it has people ready to die.
[spoken and diary entry]
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits prologue: "I know death hath ten thousand several doors

For men to take their exits". See more »


Piet Hein's Name Is Short
Lyrics by Jan Pieter Heije
English Lyrics by Tommie Connor
Music by Johannes Viotta
Arranged by Allan Gray
Sung by the teacher and the students in the school
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

" ....Piet Hein, Piet Hein, your name will always shine...."
16 January 2019 | by Brucey_DSee all my reviews

Dutchman Van Leyden (Richardson) knows his shipyard will be used by the Germans whether he like it or not, so chooses to play a dangerous double game, ostensibly playing along with the Germans -earning the ire of his countrymen who think he is a Quisling- whilst anonymously organising acts of sabotage under the name 'Piet Hein' -a historic Dutch naval hero.

Powell and Pressburger's film was made as war propaganda and it shows; however it is both a good film in its own right and it portrays the Germans in a less bad light than was originally intended.

The script is credited to Sewell and Wellesley, but the first draft was written by Emeric Pressburger, who had been forced out of Germany by the Nazis and had first hand experience of what they were like. He originally wrote it not only with threats of Nazi reprisals, but reprisals on civilians made real. He refused to have his name put to the script once these had been edited out by Sewell.

The story is inspired by real events; Dutch dockyard workers did hijack a Nazi submarine during WWII. Much of the film was shot at Denham studios, with dockyard scenes in Dundee and some street scenes in King's Lynn. Oddly enough parts of King's Lynn were built with Dutch-made bricks and tiles (they were brought back as ballast by ships exporting wool from East Anglia) so the resemblance to Dutch streets is more than coincidental.

It would have been easy to make every part in this film a mere caricature (as many are) but Richardson's role is much more nuanced than that. Nothing of course could do justice to the many selfless acts carried out by partisans during WWII but this does more than make a token gesture in that direction.

Overall this probably isn't one of P&P's best films but that certainly doesn't make it a bad film in absolute terms; it is a lofty canon. For what it was and when it was made it gets eight out of ten from me.

0 of 0 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 14 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Check Out What's Playing on IMDb Freedive

See what movies and TV series you can watch for free today, and visit IMDb Freedive for even more. Select any poster below to play the movie!

Find more things to watch

Stream Trending Movies With Prime Video

Enjoy a night in with these popular movies available to stream now with Prime Video.

Start your free trial

Recently Viewed