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49th Parallel (Criterion Collection) (1941)

Cast: Leslie Howard, Leslie Howard, Raymond Massey, more...
Director: Michael Powell, Michael Powell, Michael Powell
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Studio: Criterion
Genre: Drama, Foreign, British Drama, UK, War, WWII, Criterion Collection
Languages: English

Synopses
49th Parallel (Criterion Collection) (1941)
At once a compelling piece of anti-isolationist propaganda and a quick-witted wartime thriller, 49th Parallel is a classic early work from the inimitable British filmmaking team of Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger. When a Nazi U-boat crew, headed by the ruthless Eric Portman, is stranded in Canada during the thick of World War II, the men evade capture by hiding out in a series of rural communities, before trying to cross the border into the still-neutral United States. Both soul-stirring and delightfully entertaining, 49th Parallel features a colorful cast of characters played by larger-than-life actors Laurence Olivier, Raymond Massey, Anton Walbrook, and Leslie Howard.

49th Parallel (Criterion Collection) (Bonus Disc) (1941)
49th Parallel is a British wartime entreaty for Empire solidarity, concentrating on rousing the patriotic fervor of the citizens of Canada. A group of Nazi naval officers and crewmen are stranded on Canadian soil (we have no sympathy for the castaways, inasmuch as we have just seen them refusing food and water to a group of torpedoed British seamen). Led by lieutenant Eric Portman, the Nazis try to stir up sympathy amongst the Canadians, beginning with apolitical Quebeckian trapper Laurence Olivier. Failing to convert Olivier--even by force--the Germans move on to a Hutterite farming community, where again they are unsuccessful in winning adherents (though, conversely, German seaman Niall Mac Ginnis defects to the other side). They then cross the path of professorial author Leslie Howard, who is living amongst the Indians to soak up "local color". Even Howard proves too formidable for the Nazis, and by film's end the surviving invaders are hiding out in a train, where they are discovered and captured by AWOL Canadian soldier Raymond Massey. Most TV viewers know 49th Parallel under its alternate title, The Invaders. ~ Hal Erickson, All Movie Guide

GreenCine Member Ratings

49th Parallel (Criterion Collection) (1941)
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7.34 (32 votes)
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49th Parallel (Criterion Collection) (Bonus Disc) (1941)
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6.60 (5 votes)
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The Brits' 100 Favorite Films
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The 100 films with the highest attendance in British box office history. (This list reflects the popularity of the films rather than the growing price of movie tickets the way lists of the highest grossing movies do.)
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