Henry Hathaway’s humane and sympathetic portrait of Field Marshal Erwin Rommel, played by James Mason, deals largely with the final years of Rommel’s life and, in particular, his plots against Hitler.
The brilliant tactics of Rommel, commander of the crack Afrika Korps, have earned him the respect of both friend and enemy, in spite of the problems caused by the lack of supplies promised by Hitler. When the tide starts to turn against the Germans at El Alamein, Rommel disobeys Hitler’s orders and pulls his troops out of the battle. He returns to Germany where he is hospitalised with jaundice and tells his friend Dr Strolin (Cedric Hardwicke) of his loss of confidence in the Fuehrer. On recovering, Rommel tours the Atlantic defences and, finding Hitler has assumed complete command of the defence of Europe in preparation for the expected Allied invasion, Rommel visits his wife (Jessica Tandy) and their son (William Reynolds).
Later Dr Strolin sounds him out again about his attitude towards Hitler. Rommel is torn between his oath of loyalty and his own better judgement. With the invasion now in progress, Rommel learns that three members of an anti-Hitler plot have been captured. He is now committed to the conspiracy to kill the Fuehrer but is wounded by British bombers while driving. The plot is carried through, but miraculously Hitler escapes. In the ensuing interrogation of suspects, Rommel’s name is mentioned. His position becomes critical. So, when a delegation from Hitler informs him the solution lies in his hands: for the sake of his family, Rommel must shoot himself.
USA / 88 minutes / 1951
Writers:Nunnally Johnson, from the biography Rommel by Desmond Young,
James Mason as Field Marshal Erwin Rommel
Luther Adler as Adolf Hitler
Everett Sloane as Gen. Wilhelm Burgdorf
Leo G. Carroll as Field Marshal Gerd von Rundstedt
George Macready as Gen. Fritz Bayerlein
Richard Boone as Capt. Hermann Aldinger
Eduard Franz as Col. Klaus von Stauffenberg
Desmond Young as Lt. Colonel Desmond Young
Dan O’Herlihy as Commando Captain
Michael Rennie as Narrator (voice)
Paul Cavanagh as Lt. Col. Caesar von Hofaker
George Nader as Commando
John Hoyt as Field Marshal Wilhelm Keitel (uncredited)
Peter van Eyck as German Officer
Cedric Hardwicke as Dr. Karl Strolin
Jessica Tandy as Frau Lucie Marie Rommel
and this just in
Drowning in Plastic Premieres Mon 1 Oct on BBC-1
Our blue planet is facing one its biggest threats in human history. Trillions of pieces of plastic are choking the...
The Debt Saviours premieres Fri 5 Oct on BBC-2
Across Britain more than four million people have debts considered unsustainable. Responsibility for advising and helping these vulnerable people is...
Press: Episode 5 airs Thurs 4 Oct on BBC One
Episode 5: Ed’s (Paapa Essiedu) pride in his soaring professional achievements – his latest story, a profile of teen ‘monster’...
Upstart Crow: Go On and I Will Follow (Season final
Go On and I Will Follow: The day of Will’s son Hamnet’s (Joe Willis) confirmation is approaching and Anne (Liza...
Wanderlust: Episode 5 airs Tues 2 Oct on BBC One
Episode 5: In the midst of all the turbulence in her life, Joy’s regular therapy session with Angela (Sophie Okonedo,...
Strictly Come Dancing Live Performances (Sat 29 Sep on BBC One)
Strictly Come Dancing Live Performances (Sat 29 Sep on BBC One): The drama ramps up this week as our 15...
Killing Eve: Don’t I Know You? (Episode 3 BBC-1 Run Sat 29 Sep 2018(
Don’t I Know You?: When Villanelle (Jodie Comer) kills a Chinese Colonel at a kink clinic in Berlin, Eve (Sandra...
Trust: What’s Up, Doc? (Episode 4 BBC-2 Run 3 Oct 2018)
What’s Up, Doc?: Little Paul gets to know his captors, while Primo opens a channel of communication to Gail. Note:...
Way Ahead, The (1944, David Niven, Stanley Holloway)
Classic British war film The Way Ahead was inspired by the 40-minute army training film The New Lot directed in...
Gift Horse, The (1952, Trevor Howard, Richard Attenborough)
Described by The News of the World as ‘a great and stirring British war film’, The Gift Horse follows a...
U-Turn (1997, Sean Penn, Nick Nolte)
In U-Turn Bobby Cooper (Sean Penn) is stranded after his car dies in the desert and he heads for the...