Featured Films--Naked Among Wolves to Ningen no joken
Naked Among Wolves (1963), Director: Frank Beyer, Running time: 119 minutes.
As rumors reach them that the Allied armies are advancing on their concentration camp at Buchenwald, Polish prisoners renew their feeble hope for survival and freedom. When a group of prisoners is transferred from Auschwitz, a four-year-old child is smuggled into the camp in a valise. Born at Auschwitz, he is Jewish and will be killed if discovered. A group of prisoners decide to protect the child, from the searching Germans, and although the kapos cannot smuggle the boy out of Buchenwald, they manage to hide him—moving from one place to another within the camp as the Nazis comb it. Threats and torture by SS men fail to turn up the boy who becomes a symbol of the struggle between captives and captors.
The Night of the Generals (1967), Director: Anatole Litvak, Running time: 147 minutes.
The murder of a prostitute in Nazi occupied Warsaw draws Wehrmacht Major Grau into an investigation where the evidence points to one of three high ranking Generals. The trail leads Grau from Warsaw to Paris and straight into the 1944 plot to assassinate Adolf Hitler, of which two of the Generals are deeply involved. Grau's case goes unfinished and it is not until 1965 when the true killer is brought to justice. (Anthony Hughes for IMBd)
Ni liv (1957), Director: Arne Skouen, Running time: 96 minutes.
The movie takes place during World War II and depicts the true story of Jan Baalsruds amazing escape from the German army from the coast of Northern Norway and across the border to the neutral country Sweden. Jan Baalsrud is on a sabotage mission from England to Norway together with 11 other soldiers in the winter of 1943 in a fishing boat when they are attacked by a German patrolboat. Jan Baalsrud is the only one who manages to escape and sets off towards Sweden through the enormous amounts of snow and the steep mountains of Norway. The local communities where he passes through help him despite the danger of being arrested and killed. Jan Baalsrud, snowblind and having to cut off his toes because of frost-damage survives alone in the mountains for weeks. The locals are constantly trying to get him over to Sweden, but German patrols and the winter storms delay their departure. (Written by Holger Lockertsen for IMBd)
Ningen no joken (Human Condition) (1959), Director: Masaki Kobayashi, Running time: 208 minutes.
First of a trilogy of films. During the Second World War, a Japanese conscientious objector named Kaji works as a supervisor in a Manchurian prison camp. He hopes to avoid duty as a soldier, but he also hopes to be helpful to the welfare of his prisoners. An escape attempt by Chinese prisoners results in Kaji's arrest for collusion. He faces the possibility of transfer to combat—or worse. (Jim Beaver for IMDb)