Autumn, 1913: on the eve of the Great War, a small party of lords and ladies gather at the Hertfordshire estate of Sir Randolph Nettleby. A code of propriety governs all: dress, breakfast, relations with the estate's peasants, courtship, shooting, adultery. Lionel Stephens, who is courting Sir Randolph's daughter, gets into a shooting competition with Lord Gilbert Hartlip; Lord Gilbert's wife carries on discreet affairs; a pamphleteer circles the estate calling for no more killing, and Sir Robert's grandson hopes to protect a wild duck he's befriended. A way of life is ending: Lord Gilbert's violation of the gentlemen's code suggests internal rot as the real world presses in.
Did You Know?
The film was entered into competition at the 14th Moscow International Film Festival in 1985. See more
The film features several Labrador Retrievers. These were not used for hunting in England in 1913. See more
Lady Aline Hartlip
Why are you smiling?
Sir Randolph Nettleby
I can't imagine... except that... sometimes when my thoughts about the future are particularly gloomy, I find myself feeling more and more light-hearted.
Opening credits prologue: Autumn 1913
Closing credits epilogue:
Captain Lionel Stephens MC killed in action Ypres 1915
Oberstleutenant Count Tibor Rakessyi killed in action Stobykhva 1916
Lieutenant Marcus Nettleby killed in action Delville Wood, The Somme 1916
Lance-Sergeant Walter Weir died of wounds Gallipoli 1915
Private John Hoskins killed in action Passchendaele 1917 See more
Version of Tragödie auf der Jagd