49th Parallel (The Criterion Collection)
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Frequently Bought Together
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
- New, restored high-definition digital transfer
- Commentary by film and music historian Bruce Eder
- The Volunteer, a 1943 Powell and Pressburger short starring Ralph Richardson
- A Pretty British Affair, a BBC documentary on the careers of Powell and Pressburger
- Original theatrical trailer
- Booklet with new essay by film scholar Charles Barr and an excerpt Powell's 1941 premiere speech
Top Customer Reviews
As the German U-boat gets bombed by the Canadian Air Force, stranding the six man landing party led by Lt. Hirth (Eric Portman), you follow them as they try to "blend" into the Canadian populace, with the intentions of crossing the border into the US.
Some of the stellar performances include Sir Laurence Olivier as a French Canadian trapper who has spent so long in the wild he is not aware the world is at war, Anton Walbrook ("The Red Shoes") is fabulous and so handsome as the leader of a peaceable community, where we also find a lovely young Glynis Johns, who is an orphan living there. Leslie Howard, an actor who I could watch read the proverbial telephone book, is marvelous as a writer who invites the strangers into his teepee in the woods, and Raymond Massey gives a delicious portrayal of a young man who has overstayed his leave from the military.
Also starring in this film is the Canadian landscape, which we get to see and admire as the Nazis make their way from coast to coast.
Though the plot has some gaping holes, it is well written, fast-paced, and quite exciting, and is a fascinating film from an historical perspective, and because of the participation of so many great performers and filmmakers.
The crew of the German raider U-37, after torpedoing a Canadian merchant ship, is sunk by the RCAF in northern Hudson Bay, near the Canadian Arctic (Talk of propaganda - as we learn in the commentary, the three B-10 bombers we see attacking the sub, actually made up the entire fleet of the RCAF in 1940). Six of the U-37 crew make it to shore alive. They have to cross hostile Canadian territory to reach the safety of neutral America. The film contrasts the kindness and decency of Canadians, emphasising their kinship with their American brethren to the south, against the brutality and inhumanity of the Nazis. As the U-37 crew trek southward, they encounter various Canadians who prove their loyalty in one way or another, often delivering ringing lectures about the rightness of the allied cause. Laurence Olivier is almost unrecognisable as the jolly French trapper whom the Nazis try to tempt by declaring that Hitler has sworn to free French Canadians from the tyranny of the British. Instead he risks his life trying to warn the Americans. Eskimo hunters (Inuit), described as semi-apes by the Nazis, manage to kill one of the Germans as they flee south.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
One of the greatest World War II movies where native Canadians defeat some Nazis that attempted to invade their country. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Catalina Flynn
If you're a Nazi you probably will find this movie irritating; otherwise go for it.Published 3 months ago by Phil Meyers
How did this get a 5 star review?? It was terrible. I never seen such lousy acting and story line.Published 3 months ago by jerry
49th Parallel is a wonderfully biased WWII propaganda film that shows clearly the beauties and liberty of North American democracy versus the hideous culture of European fascism. Read morePublished 6 months ago by Amazon Customer
Early in World War 2, a German U-Boat is sunk in Hudson Bay, stranding a raiding party of six men. They decide to head across Canada to the United States, where they hope that they... Read morePublished 10 months ago by The Reviewer Formerly Known as Kurt Johnson
Great transfer to DVD. Good movie that reflects the times it represents. Good watch.Published 10 months ago by larry j
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