The Sorrow and the Pity

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About the film

The Sorrow and the Pity

france vichy regime world war ii nazi nazi collaborationism nazi occupation occupied france

The Sorrow and the Pity

Release Date: September 18, 1969

Year    :   1969
Slogan    :   «Chronicle of a French City under the Occupation»
Genres    :   Documentary, History, War
Production Companies    :   NDR, SRG SSR, Télévision Rencontre
Director    :   Marcel Ophüls
Producers    :   André Harris, Alain de Sedouy
Writers    :   Marcel Ophüls, André Harris
RunTime    :   251 mins.

From 1940 to 1944, France's Vichy government collaborated with Nazi Germany. Marcel Ophüls mixes archival footage with 1969 interviews of a German officer and of collaborators and resistance fighters from Clermont-Ferrand. They comment on the nature, details and reasons for the collaboration, from anti-Semitism, xenophobia, and fear of Bolsheviks, to simple caution. Part one, "The Collapse," includes an extended interview with Pierre Mendès-France, jailed for anti-Vichy action and later France's Prime Minister. At the heart of part two, "The Choice," is an interview with Christian de la Mazière, one of 7,000 French youth to fight on the eastern front wearing German uniforms.

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