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Idealized picture of Prussia to garner German support for total war

Film | Accession Number: 1994.121.1 | RG Number: RG-60.1196 | Film ID: 980

Reel 5 begins with Gneisenau giving an inspiring speech to the Kolbergers in the square of the town. The speech ends with the words, "the best way to defend a fortress is to attack!" Schill is shown leading his soldiers into battle on white horses. Maria, presumably still on her return journey, is in a boat off the coast watching the battle from afar. The boat captain wants to go back but Maria insists on taking a rowboat to shore. Schill waits until the French get as close as possible before giving the order to shoot, thus inflicting as much damage as possible. Claus is shown briefly, clutching his violin and trying to cover his ears to block out the noise from cannon fire. Schill and Friedrich have a frantic conference on the beach and Schill decides to attempt to break through the lines. Meanwhile, Gneisenau, in conference with Nettelbeck, decides to flood the lowest-lying parts of the city, despite the fact that it will leave many citizens without homes. Nettelbeck oversees the work. After the houses are flooded, Maria notices Claus wading through the water, looking for his violin. As he and Maria argue, he is shot and killed.

The next scene shows Friedrich and Maria embracing, mourning their lost father and brother. Friedrich mentions that Schill is leaving to try and get to Sweden, and Maria runs to find him. They say goodbye and she watches his boat sail away. Maria knows that she will never see him again. The next scenes show the arrival of a French parlimentarian to demand the city's surrender. Gneisenau leads the Frenchman to the balcony window, and announces to the crowd of Kolbergers below that he has told the parlimentarian that the people of Kolberg would rather die than hand over the city. He asks that anyone who disagrees with him call out, but the crowd is silent. He asks that those who agree with him go back to their homes and workplaces and the crowd dissipates. The fighting continues. A black servant or soldier appears with the French. Nettelbeck's house burns down and Friedrich is killed.

Film Title
Production:  1945
Accessed at United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, courtesy of Library of Congress
Record last modified: 2022-07-28 22:03:06
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