Killing Hitler (2008)

by | Nov 23, 2008 | DVD & Blu-ray Video Reviews | 0 comments

Killing Hitler (2008)

Documentary on the true story of the Valkyrie Plot
Studio: Pegasus Entertainment/Eagle Media EM 35096-9 [Release date: Dec. 9, 08]
Video: 4:3 full screen, B& W and color
Audio: English DD 2.0
Extras: Interactive menus, 6 scene selections
Length: 61 minutes
Rating: ****

This interesting documentary is being released next month to tie in with the new Tom Cruise feature Valkyrie, on the same subject.  Oddly, another documentary from the BBC with exactly the same time title will also be released on DVD in January.  The most interesting piece of information that comes out of this film is that there was not just one but a whole series of attempts on Hitler’s life – both from some of the generals and from outside individuals such as a Swiss cabinet maker. There has been much publicity about the French Resistance and others who courageously fought against Nazism, and there was a fine German feature about the White Rose Group of student protesters, but little has been done on men and women inside Germany and even in Hitler’s own cadre who attempted to assassinate him.

The Valkyrie Plot was hatched by several of Hitler’s generals in 1944 and involved a timed bomb in a briefcase that was left in a meeting room.  The plotters’ main stimulus was trying to avoid the war coming to German soil, but some of them were concerned that they were too late to make any difference even if they succeeded. Unfortunately, Hitler left the fateful meeting early and escaped.  He also thwarted several other attempts – seeming to have amazing luck in spite of the risks people took to do him in.  Archival footage and stills and recreations of some of the scenes are used, but there is a bit too frequent repeats of the same images in some parts of the documentary.  There are also comments by various German historians.

 – John Sunier
 

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