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9. April (April 9th) - movie

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Seems interesting...

 

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.

 

 

 

 

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt3542188/

Edited by blackram_
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Great stuff. I really admire the Danes and how they kept sight of what was right and good during the war. I'll look forward to seeing the film.

And I do believe those bicycles are real and not CG as well... Amazing!

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I went and saw it, when it was in theatres. It's written by Tobias Lindholm, who writes these extremely realistic scripts, even when he's not covering historic events, and even his fiction is usually patched together entirely of events that have hapened in real life.

 

When I had gone to see it, I wrote my thoughts about it down in a PM to [TWB]80hd, who had requested it. I'm sure he won't mind if I share the write up with you as well:

 

I promised, that I'd get back to you, when I had gone and seen the movie. Well, I saw it tonight, and while I propably won't give it a rousing recommendation as a movie, it has certain qualities, that might make you wanna get your hands on it.

First of all: It's very, very realistic, bordering on a filmed documentary. It meticulously recreates the actual events almost scene by scene. The fighting scenes are harrowing and quite convincing, though surprisingly low on blood and gore (simply because practically there's hardly any use of artillery or other explosives - as was the reality on the real April 9th) The military equipment is either original or very convincing mock-ups. Overall it's propably the most realistic depiction of a specific war I've seen since 'Generation Kill'.

The scope of the film is very narrow. The entire movie takes place over a period of less than 24 hours including the buildup, and follows the second bicycle platoon from Haderslev and their actions during the invasion. That's it.

There is very little backstory to the soldiers we follow and practically no character development whatsoever. It's clearly meant to create an intense atmosphere, where the viewer can put him/herself in the boots of one of those men riding their bikes towards what seems like certain death. While it does do that very well, I kinda miss interesting characters like in 'Generation Kill'. The characters aren't stereotypes, and they generally behave realistically, but there's just no depth and flavor to them at all, you never really get to feel that you know them.

I think the film succeeds spectacularly at being historically accurate, well shot and edited (it looks really, really good) and create an intense atmosphere (though it never gets particularly grissly or gritty - we're talking a couple of hours of fighting by men in still-clean uniforms using mostly hand weapons)

Where the film fails, I think, is in telling a story worth caring about. The characters are too undeveloped and the setting provides no real uncertainties to get excited about. It's all too hopeless to be engaging as an epic and not quite grissly and bloody enough to be a full blown tragedy. In the end it's just a realistic recreation of a narrow spectrum of the shortest battle of WW2 and little else.

If that doesn't scare you away, it might be worth looking into, if you can get hold of a subtitled version.

 

 

That was my take on it right after seeing it, and it's pretty much still how I feel about it.

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Seems interesting, I'm going to see this after it gets subtitles either in english or finnish.

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It's available on iTunes. I think it has subtitles there.

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Finkeren, Im very fond of european war movies for obvious reasons. More realistic (in general), often dark atmospheres like in rl, etc. Thans for the info, I guessed well get a nice info from Dane dude  ;)

Edited by blackram_

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If any of you sit down and watch it, I'll be interested in hearing what you think. My brother is a screenwriter and has worked with Lindholm before. He'd no doubt be interested in how well the realism of the film translates when subtitled.

Edited by Finkeren

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Hey Fink, I liked the movie. One of the thinkgs war movie/war drama should present is an atmosphere (in this case feeling of desperation, chaos, anticipation of whats is waiting you and your men etc.). Combat scenes are also well done. And the fact that those young guys were sent to deal with heavily armoured and motorized units of wehrmacht.

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Great movie. It seems very realistic and historycally acurate. The sets are deployed with precise details. Ok, we have some Wehrmacht equipment mistakes like an MG42 on sidecars. There was no big battle in Südjütland and on acount of this no massiv an bloody shoutouts were shown in that movie.

 

Ten times better than hollywood WWII trash with obligate US hero.

 

I recommend the estonian movie '1944' too.

Edited by StG2_Juuti

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There was no big battle in Südjütland and on acount of this no massiv an bloody shoutouts were shown in that movie.

While not really a 'big battle' in any sense of the word, the fighting in Southern Jutland was nonetheless pretty intense especially considering how few soldiers were involved (only a tiny minority of the actual Danish forces in Jutland saw action on April 9th) and how short the fighting lasted (first shots were fired shortly before dawn, and it was all over before lunchtime)

 

The Danish defenders had 36 casualties (16 dead, 20 wounded including 3 border guards and 2 pilots) while the DIAS report, which was done in cooperation with the German authorities lists a staggering 203 casualties for the German side, which would make it by far the worst kill/loss ratio the Wehrmacht ever experienced in a major operation.

 

The DIAS report is disputed, but no German casualty figures have survived dealing seperately with the invasion of Denmark.

 

What seems clear is, that the German forces expected a peaceful occupation, which failed to materialize in the first few hours and resulted in unfortunate German front line units caught up in a battle they had not anticipated and were therefore decimated by a few handfulls of Danish defenders.

Edited by Finkeren

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The movie seems to reflect the numbers in the DIAS report. The Danish defenders are definately shown as giving the Germans a hard fight and causing lots of casualties for only a few losses to their own side. Which is likely how it really was, even if the actual numbers are disputed.

Edited by Finkeren

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April 9th in Denmark. Looks very interesting indeed:) WIll have to see it.

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