A powerful new film inspired by a true story. This feature follows the heroic lives of a world leader and a young man swept up in the horrors of WWII. Both men are from Hungary--a country and German ally that had been spared the atrocities orchestrated by Hitler throughout much of Europe. As the war reaches its climax, Germany begins to doubt the loyalties of the Hungarian leadership-in particular Regent Horthy (Academy Award winner Ben Kingsley). The Regent tries to navigate his country between the growing terror of Nazi Germany and the oppressive threat of communist Russia. He is ultimately faced with ceding power to another political party or accepting the execution of his son. As the crisis unfolds, thousands of his citizens are forced underground or put into ghettos. One of them is a young man named Elek Cohen (Jonas Armstrong) who is separated from his family and determined to find them. Aided by the woman he loves (Hannah Tointon), Elek disguises himself as a Nazi SS officer and discovers the truth of Hitler's "Final Solution." In a race against time to save his family and thousands of his countrymen, he embarks on a journey filled with suspense and danger. An inspirational film of love, war, and sacrifice, WALKING WITH THE ENEMY is an unforgettable experience for audiences.
Vitalie Bichir (Russian Captain), Florin Arhip (Russian Sniper), Jonas Armstrong (Elek Cohen), David Leon (Lajos), Hannah Tointon (Hannah Schoen), Flora Spencer-Longhurst (Rachel Schoen), Mark Wells (Ferenc Jacobson), Michelle Miklosey (Marketa), Jeffrey C. Hawkins (Andras), George Icleanu (Club Owner), Vlad Radescu (Mr. Schoen), Naomi Capron (Mrs. Schoen), Avila Schmidt (Trolley Girl), Ann-Marie Schmidt (Trolley Mother), Simon Kunz (Jozsef Greenberg), Gay Hamilton (Frau Lustig), Charles Hubbell (SS Colonel Eichmann), Jonty Stephens (Mr. Farkas), Andrei Aradits (Eichmann's Aide), Ken Bones (Samuel Stern), Charles De'Ath (Lieutenant Krieger (as Charles De' Ath)), Richard Albrecht (Rabbi Cohen), Robert Jezek (Mr. Balacz), Heather Bleasdale (Mrs. Cohen), Jade Moulla (Sofi Cohen)...
Cristian Bostanescu (line producer), Brian Schmidt (producer), Mark Schmidt (producer), Shaun Schmidt (producer), D. Scott Trawick (producer), Christopher Williams (producer), Randy Williams (producer)
Inspired by a true story, "Walking with the Enemy" relates the horror of the deaths of 500,000 Jews in Hungary in the final year of World War II. The film's focus is on the attempt made by Pinchas Rosenbaum and a close friend to impersonate Nazi officers in order to save Hungarian Jews from certain death.
In the film, Rosenbaum's character is the fictionalized Elek Cohen, whose daring raids while in disguise as a Nazi officer rescued Hungarian Jews in the process of deportation to the death camps. While the film was earnest in the depiction of the brutal killings and mass deportations, the scenes of impersonation were not very credible, especially when Elek would simply show up on the scene and assume command of other Nazi officers.
Another shortcoming of the film was in the depiction of Regent Milos Horthy, on whose watch hundreds of thousands of Jews perished. As played by the actor Ben Kingsley, the filmmakers made Horthy a one-dimensional character, assigning the decision-making process more completely to Ferenc Szalasi, the chairman of the Arrow Cross party.
The historical Milos Horthy required a much more nuanced approach. After Horthy caved in to pressure from the Germans and a puppet government was installed in Hungary, the Germans moved with lightning-fast speed to round up and deport nearly 300,000 Hungarian Jews in less than three months in the spring of 1944. When Horthy finally ordered the deportations to cease one month later, 437,402 Hungarian Jews had been transported to the gas chambers. This sequence of events was radically compressed and far too vague, as depicted in the film.
One of the most interesting characters in the film was that of the Swiss envoy Carl Lutz, who made the courageous attempt to rescue Jews by giving them false Swiss visas. The efforts of Lutz and Rosenbaum were indeed heroic and were well-presented in the film. But the epilogue that moved the action forward to New York in the year 1980 seemed too tidy and romanticized in contrast to the visceral content of the film. "Walking with the Enemy" was nonetheless successful in dramatizing an important yet often untold story of the World War II and the Holocaust.
Title Card: Since the start of World War II in 1939, Hungary, an ally to Germany, has been spared the violence that has swept across Europe. As the war turns in favor of the US and its allies, Hungarian leadership seeks a way out of its alliance with Germany. Hitler is alerted to Hungary's plans. Political tensions between the two nations rise and in 1944...
Al lado del enemigo (Spain) • Gyaloglás az ellenséggel (Hungary) • Стеклянный дом (Russia) • The Glass House (USA (alternative title))
disguise, anti semitism, underground resistance, holocaust, hungarian nazi, family relationships, shot in the back, saving a life, woods, trust, tolling bell, returning home, knife, war ruins, threat to kill, missing family, crying man, pain, shame, barking dog, rumor, jumping onto a train, doll, ss, reference to benito mussolini, reference to berlin germany, reference to joseph stalin, waldensee hungary, concentration camp, wahdensee concentration camp...
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