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Behind These Walls (1946)

Jericho (original title)
Passed | | Drama, War | 14 December 1946 (USA)
Jericho is the code name of an operation set up by the British Royal Air Force and the French Resistance to free French hostages held by German soldiers in the jail of Amiens in Northern ... See full summary »

Director:

Henri Calef

Writers:

Claude Heymann (scenario), Charles Spaak (adaptation)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Nadine Alari ... Alice Noblet (as Nadine Alary)
Roland Armontel ... Muscat (as Armontel)
Jean Brochard ... Michaud (as Brochard)
André Carnège André Carnège ... L'aumônier allemand
Jacques Charon Jacques Charon ... Le comte Jacques de Saint-Leu (as Jacques Charon de la Comédie Française)
Paul Demange ... André Morget
Yves Deniaud Yves Deniaud ... Robert Detaille
Paul Faivre Paul Faivre ... Le pharmacien
Guy Favières Guy Favières ... Le maire
Gabrielle Fontan Gabrielle Fontan ... Madame Michaud
René Génin René Génin ... Camille Duroc
Albert Glado Albert Glado
Jacques Henley Jacques Henley
Maxime Joal Maxime Joal
Pierre Larquey ... Béquille
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Storyline

Jericho is the code name of an operation set up by the British Royal Air Force and the French Resistance to free French hostages held by German soldiers in the jail of Amiens in Northern France. Written by <calef@apogee-com.fr>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | War

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

France

Language:

French | German | English

Release Date:

14 December 1946 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Behind These Walls See more »

Filming Locations:

Amiens, Somme, France See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Films Sacha Gordine See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Tobis-Klangfilm)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Film without music. See more »

Connections

Edited into Histoire(s) du cinéma: Une vague nouvelle (1999) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Bravery and cowardice
29 July 2007 | by dbdumonteilSee all my reviews

Henri Calef's movie is thoroughly remarkable,one of the best films dealing with WW2 ever.Based on a true story.

1944:A train full of petrol (gasoline) has stopped in the station of Amiens.The German army , still occupying France ,fears sabotage.So they decide to take 50 hostages:if the resistant fighters attack the train,they will be shot.

Brilliant scenes: The sleepy town where people hide,afraid of the boots marching in the streets.

The city council,who has got to choose the hostages ."We've got to put our names at the top of the list " says the mayor.But two members are frightened and they resign their mandate.

The scenes in the jail ,where a man (Pierre Brasseur) is so afraid of dying he'd do anything to save his life,even boots-licking ."I know where the commies and the Jews are " he shouts at the soldiers.

The scenes involving the resistance fighters :some of them do not want to carry out their mission "My parents are there in town.Your family is away,they will be safe /Of course they will :my father died in WW1 and my wife was taken to Germany and beheaded".

But it's the long sequence in the church were the hostages are imprisoned which climaxes the film.Calef avoids the usual cliché "All French people were brave resistance fighters" :among these 50 people ,some of them rebel,they are afraid to die,they cannot stand that dawn which is inexorably approaching.In the priest' s pulpit ,Morin (Brasseur) has turned completely mad ,his terror knows no bounds.His attitude is in direct contrast to that of Simone who bravely enters the jail between two soldiers .She too is to be shot with the fifty men.

Calef's strength is to involve the audience in his story.What would we have done?Would we have been the bravest of the brave?Or would we have been incapable of facing the last night,the last letters to the families (3 pencils for 50 men!)and the guns? Calef's characters are men (and a woman) it's easy to identify with :they are human beings of flesh and blood,not heroes a la Rambo,but hostages with their weaknesses ,their doubts and their fears which never go away.In the church ,some of them suggest games,songs ,nothing works."Jericho" is a movie without real stars ,but it achieves the feat of introducing lots of endearing characters :the one-legged man(Pierre Larquey) coming down the stairs,under the soldiers ' watchful eye, epitomizes the victim of the conquerors' Barbary .

The film begins with a famous German military march during the cast and credits but ends with "it's a long way to Tipperary " ,a tribute to the courageous fighter pilots of the British Royal Airforce .

Like this?Try these....

"Les otages" Raymond Bernard 1938

"Hitler's madman" Douglas Sirk 1943

"Hangmen also die" Fritz Lang 1943

"Le repas des fauves" Christian-Jaque 1964

"Uncertain glory" Raoul Walsh 1944


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