Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Carve Her Name with Pride|
Actor: Virginia McKenna
Genres: Indie & Art House, Drama
Studio: Tcfhe/mgm Release Date: 05/13/2008 Run time: 119 minutes Rating: Nr
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Virginia McKenna in the performance of her career
Byron Kolln | the corner where Broadway meets Hollywood | 06/26/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Virginia McKenna ("A Town Like Alice", "Born Free") gives the performance of her career in CARVE HER NAME WITH PRIDE, a spellbinding and dramatic true-life account of one woman's heroic actions during the darkest days of World War II.
Young English widow Violette Szabo (McKenna) enlists to train as a British spy and in her efforts to organise a resistance network in occupied France, is taken prisoner by the Nazis. Szabo's story of courage and conviction is beautifully portrayed in this heartbreaking movie. With Paul Scofield, Jack Warner, Denise Grey, Sydney Tafler, Billie Whitelaw, Anne Leon and Nicole Stephane."
Graham V. Rushton | 03/16/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)
"The casting information for Carve Her Name With Pride is totally wrong. Michael Caine was never in this film. The lead goes to Virginia McKenna and she is brilliant in this. I will be waiting to add this to my collection along with A Town Like Alice, another great J. Arthur Rank production."
Opportunity to become extraordinary
Sandra L. Main | Detroit, MI | 12/01/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"A recent vacation on Jersey, observing their history of 5 years of German occupation in the 1940s and their monuments to independence, prompted me to purchase this movie. It reminded me that difficult times grant us opportunity to become extraordinary. It is a story of courage, of wanting life and love and sacrifice to mean something. Yes the film was made a long time ago before snappy technology. The story is the story and worth seeing."
Many British agents perished in Europe at war. Give us the p
J. Faulk | New York NY USA | 02/26/2009
(2 out of 5 stars)
"I wish that I could say this is a good film to the audience of today, but at 2 hours it's 30 minutes too long (the film consumes 50 minutes before it gets Violette to France on her first mission), an overwatered broth adhering to the straight-on conventions of the 1950s. The fear, suffering, and execution would have been too much for the 1958 movie audience, so the film limns them but weakly.
Virginia McKenna (Violette Szabo) is a pretty young English woman fluent in French from her early years. In 1940, with war looming, she meets French soldier Alain Saury, they soon marry, and he has to return to the French army. Cut to their daughter's second birthday party, when Virginia receives the dreaded telegram about her young husband.
Later she's approached by Special Operations to fly into France as a British agent. She accepts, and during her military style training meets officer Paul Scofield, and they drift towards romance. Their first mission to contact the Resistance is successful, but on her second mission she engages in a shootout with the Germans. She is captured, refuses to talk, and with two other young women is executed. (I've read that Michael Caine does appear momentarily in the glut of male prisoners on the train begging for water. And that, in reality, the three women were not executed by a spray of bullets as they stand but were made to kneel and shot in the back of the head.)
This is all a true story from World War II. I was attracted to the film by a Supplement on the DVD of "Peeping Tom," the screenplay of which was written by Leo Marks. He was a cryptographic expert in the war and was responsible for two very important concepts used by British agents in encrypting messages: a Silk Handkerchief, given to each agent, imprinted with columns of alphabet letters, and a Poem, unique for each agent, to be memorized and used in the coding process. The poem Marks wrote for Violette Szabo begins: "The life that I have/ Is all that I have/ And the life that I have/ Is yours." For the "Carve" film, the historical truth is distorted so that Violette's Frenchman, her husband to be, writes it, and recites the poem to her as they recline on the grass; thus it acquires emotional weight and is used in several places in the film, and indeed brings it to a close. (I've read that Marks, in granting permission to use the poem in the film, specfied that his name was not to be mentioned; and that he originally wrote the poem on Christmas Eve 1943 for his loved friend after she died in an airplane crash while training in Canada.)
Today, better the story of Leo Marks should be told, from his book Between Silk and Cyanide, and incorporate the many agents (such as Violettte) he strove to protect and save, and yes, there are ways to be truthful about the actual torture methods used by the Gestapo. As a second thought, a television miniseries out of England could be superb. (I've since discovered, and am watching, the 1987 series Wish Me Luck, available from Amazon.)"