Which are SUPERIMPOSED OVER a SCENE of almost unnatural
beauty. A thickly wooded forest which practically shut out
the sunlight. All is not serene however. SHOTS RING Out --
and we are privy to a running battle between a German patrol
and a band of Russian soldiers. It is a desperate fight --
and several bodies fall. we see the faces of several men
whose identity we will learn later. The shooting is still
going on when the CREDITS come to an END. Then --
1. THE SLOPE OF A HILL - DAY
The CAMERA is MOVING SLOWLY up the hill. The verdancy of
the hill, the intermittent clusters of daisies and dandelions
are evidence of the season -- late Spring. Now the crest of
the hill is in sight; above it a patch of blue sky is
visible. The mood is pastoral, peaceful.
The CAMERA reaches the crest -- and suddenly a pair of highly
polished boots almost fills the SCREEN. The CAMERA comes
to an abrupt HALT. Then SLOWLY, the CAMERA PANS UP from the
boots to take in a carefully tailored German officer's uniform
and then the face of the German officer -- CAPTAIN STRANSKY.
It is a longish face with a high forehead and light blue
eyes. It is a face that gives an impression of extreme
forcefulness, an impression underlined by the thin - lipped
mouth and angular chin. His hair is white at the temples,
emphasizing by contrast the healthy tan of his face.
At the moment, Captain Stransky is gazing through a stereo-
telescope. His expression is grim. Behind the Captain
stands LIEUTENANT MEYER, a youngish, good-natured face.
However, it is apparent from his expression that he has
no great liking for his Captain. His lips are tight as
the Captain moves the knobs of the telescope with long thin
fingers. Captain Stransky straightens up, locks back at
Lieutenant Meyer, whose expression quickly changes to one
of impassivity. Stransky, whose demeanor is angry, says
nothing, but turns to peer again through the telescope.
2. VIEW THROUGH TELESCOPE WHAT CAPTAIN STRANSKY SEES
A patch of woods, about a square mile in area.
3. MED. SHOT STRANSKY AND MEYER
Stransky straightens up.
Incredible -- sheer stupidity.
Those woods should have been
cut down or destroyed by fire.
Excuse me, sir, but we retreated
too hastily for any such luxury.
I disagree. It was an irreparable
oversight, and I shall send a report
to that effect to Regiment.
(looks at the woods,
reaches for cigarette case )
Do you think the Russians are
already in those woods?
(offers Meyer a cigarette)
Thank you. We'II know soon enough.
Corporal Steiner is on a recconnai
Stransky drops his cigarette butt, steps on it.
Reconnaissance patrols have a way
of not returning.
Steiner will be back.
I did not ask your opinion Herr
Meyer says nothing. We can see that he regrets his impu
dence. With a mixture of anxiety and curiosity, he waits
to see what will happen next.
The ANGLE WIDENS to TAKE IN a PRIVATE who walks up to the
Captain Stransky? Lieutenant
Colonel Brandt Would like to see
you at headquarters.
Stransky nods, gazes sharply at Meyer, walks off, the
CAMERA TRUCKING with him. All about him are SCENES of
great activity. MEN are digging bunkers and preparing
positions. SHOUTS fill the air. As Stransky passes,
he is greeted by salutes which he acknowledges with the
briefest of nods.
4. EXT. REGIMENTAL BUNKER
An armed GUARD is on duty. He salutes smartly as .Captain
Stransky comes INTO SCENE, returns the salute without