In the early morning of April 9th 1940 the Danish army is alerted. The Germans have crossed the border; Denmark is at war against Europe's strongest army. In Southern Jutland Danish bicycle- and motorcycle companies are ordered out, to against all odds, hold back the forces until the Danish reinforcements can be mobilized. In the fatal hours, we follow second lieutenant Sand (Pilou Asbæk) and his bicycle company - they will as the first Danish soldiers meet the enemy in combat on April 9th 1940.Written by
Nordisk Film Production A/S
The limited casualties during the short German invasion of Denmark on April 9th, 1940 is heavily debated. Precise Danish military casualties are known and documented, with 16 dead (11 army soldiers, 3 border guards, 2 air force pilots) and 21 wounded, plus less than 10 civilian dead and wounded. Conversely, German casualties have no official documentation. The only known contemporary source to list a German figure states 203 German dead and wounded, this in a May 1940 summary from the Danish weapons manufacturer DISA of the battle qualities of their 20mm Madsen auto cannon, that had incapacitated German armor during the battle. This source has been accused of heavy exaggeration, as DISA with this summary was trying to market their weaponry to the German Wehrmacht now occupying Denmark. Other more conservative estimates list max 25-30 German dead and perhaps as many wounded. See more »
In the battle of Lundtoftbjerg(1940), a German soldier is equipped with a MG42 machine gun (developed in 1942). See more »
I am an Englishman who lives in Denmark with a great interest in military history generally. This film captures extremely well the first 6 hours of the German invasion. I found it accurate, well made and well acted. A simple, straightforward story well told.
The Danes surrendered after 6 hours.The Germans lost 101 men killed or wounded. The Danes lost 26 killed and 23 wounded. The Danes didn't have a chance. It is true that, during the war, the Germans recruited SS units from Denmark, these were chiefly from Southern Jutland which had been a part of Germany from 1864 until 1920 and had extremely strong German family connections and Germanic culture.
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