This drama centers on a Red Army officer (Paul Muni), a Russian woman (Lisa Elenko), and seven German soldiers who have been trapped in the ruined cellar of a bombed out factory in a ...
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After killing an unknown man for an unknown reason, a mysterious drifter turns himself to the law, under a false name intending to protect his own family's honor. But when the news of his ... See full summary »
William K. Howard
Johnny Mack Brown
This drama centers on a Red Army officer (Paul Muni), a Russian woman (Lisa Elenko), and seven German soldiers who have been trapped in the ruined cellar of a bombed out factory in a German-controlled town. While waiting for someone to rescue them, the two Russians try to keep the Germans away. Eventually the Russian officer begins toying with a German officer, and vice versa, as both seek to extract information from the other. The Russian lets on that his troops are planning to construct a tunnel beneath the river. The woman is appalled at this betrayal of information, but her companion reassures her that he can kill the enemy before they have time to share that information, but first they need to get rescued. As time slowly passes, the tension increases, especially when the Soviet begins to fall asleep. The film was made during the brief period after WW II when Russia and the U.S. were allies and the political overtones of the film were unintentional. Later, with the advent of the ...Written by
ETO Film Buff
This version of a Russian play was adapted by John Howard Lawson, who was later blacklisted (as were some of the actors). See more »
Opening credits prologue: In 1942, Russia had been invaded to a depth of a thousand miles, and her armies seemed crushed. The world didn't know that these same "beaten" armies would turn, take back every foot of ground they had lost and then invade Germany itself.
One night in this same year, 1942 . . . .under cover of fog . . . .Russian engineers were engaged in a strange activity . . . .on a river, facing the German lines . . . . . See more »
Most of "Counter-Attack" takes place in a collapsed factory building in which 2 Russians and 7 Germans are trapped. Ordinarily, in a picture of this type, the action comes to a screeching halt and the film becomes a talkathon. But the story benefits greatly from the presence of Paul Muni, one of America's great actors, as the Russian soldier who is holding the 7 German soldiers captive until rescuers arrive.
The Russians are trying to drive the Germans from Russian soil, and have sent a handful of paratroopers ahead to gather information on troop movements, and the group is trapped after an explosion at a factory doubling as a German messaging outpost. That the film does not perish from Death by Dialogue is a tribute to Paul Muni's superior acting ability as well as an excellent script. If it comes on soon, catch it and see if you don't agree.
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