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Night and Fog (1956)

Nuit et brouillard (original title)
The history of Nazi Germany's death camps of the Final Solution and the hellish world of dehumanization and death contained inside.

Director:

Alain Resnais

Writer:

Jean Cayrol (commentary)
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2 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Uncredited cast:
Michel Bouquet ... Narrator (voice) (uncredited)
Reinhard Heydrich ... Himself (archive footage) (uncredited)
Heinrich Himmler Heinrich Himmler ... Himself (archive footage) (uncredited)
Adolf Hitler ... Himself (archive footage) (uncredited)
Julius Streicher Julius Streicher ... Himself (archive footage) (uncredited)
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Storyline

One of the most vivid depictions of the horrors of Nazi Concentration Camps. Filmed in 1955 at several concentration camps in Poland, the film combines new color and black and white footage with black and white newsreels, footage shot by the victorious allies, and stills, to tell the story not only of the camps, but to portray the horror of man's brutal inhumanity. Written by Bill Randolph <wlrlogos@hotmail.com>

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Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

France

Language:

French

Release Date:

January 1956 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

Night and Fog See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Argos Films See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

At the 1954 exhibition at the Institut Pedagogique National, producer Anatole Dauman asked director Alain Resnais to direct a study of the Holocaust. But Resnais wasn't keen as he didn't want to express opinions on an event that he hadn't witnessed. His condition was that novelist Jean Cayrol agree to script the commentary. Cayrol, however, was even more reluctant to go near the project, given that he was a Holocaust survivor and didn't want to revisit some very painful memories. Resnais' collaborator Chris Marker was able to persuade him otherwise. See more »

Goofs

A few shots of the concentration camps are combinations of different concentration camps and sometimes do not show the locations suggested. See more »

Quotes

Récitant/Narrator: Who among us keeps watch over this strange watchtower to warn the arrival of our new executioners? Are their faces really different from our own?
See more »

Alternate Versions

Before its original release, there was a still of a French gendarme (policeman) watching a roundup at Pithiviers. He is easily recognizable by the characteristic French "kepi." Wanting to deny complicity, French censors insisted this shot not be allowed, so for its original release, the image was altered so that a wooden beam covered the gendarme and his kepi. In 1997 or 98, the original version of the film was re-released in France, finally revealing the gendarme. The original American release of the film did not translate all the dialogue for the subtitles, in particular leaving out one of the two references to Jews: "Annette, from Bordeaux." Subsequent releases restored the original text: "Annette, a Jew from Bordeaux." See more »

Connections

Referenced in Nihon no yoru to kiri (1960) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Insanity
2 November 2006 | by jotix100See all my reviews

Alain Resnais, a distinguished cinema director, working with Jean Cayrol, produced a document for all humanity to see and reflect. The director visited some of the concentration camps in Europe, where he filmed the abandoned sites in which millions lost their lives in one of the most shameful times in the history of mankind. European Jews paid a great price for no reason at all. Hitler and his followers decided to eliminate them because they saw in them a threat and their money and their labor would fuel the war machinery they needed to win the war.

The director uses color photography to show how the camps looked in 1955, then switches to the black and white of the material from an earlier time. Mr. Resnais juxtaposes the same camps during the 1940s at the height of the WWII conflict and how the lonely and forgotten places of what the director found in 1955. Even looking at these places ten years after the end of the war, these silent witnesses of the horrors the victims experienced, acquire a surreal look.

It's impossible to fathom what went on. We look in disbelief as bulldozers dump the inert bodies of the dead into common burial places. It's hard to imagine the ordeal these innocent victims went through, even for a moment. They didn't deserve the indignity of dying the way they did at the hands of people that should have known better. No excuses will ever justify what Hitler, and his fanatics, did to eliminate a race that didn't merit their hatred.

"Night and Fog" has powerful images and it packs such power, it's hard to make sense of what one sees in this important documentary that should be seen by everyone.


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