The Train

Synopsis: As the Allied forces approach Paris in August 1944, German Colonel Von Waldheim is desperate to take all of France's greatest paintings to Germany. He manages to secure a train to transport the valuable art works even as the chaos of retreat descends upon them. The French resistance however wants to stop them from stealing their national treasures but have received orders from London that they are not to be destroyed. The station master, Labiche, is tasked with scheduling the train and making it all happen smoothly but he is also part of a dwindling group of resistance fighters tasked with preventing the theft. He and others stage an elaborate ruse to keep the train from ever leaving French territory.
Genre: Thriller, War
Production: United Artists
  Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 1 win & 2 nominations.
Rotten Tomatoes:
133 min



It was in the

Clouvet collection, wasn't it?

It was.

- Do you like it?

- Need you ask?

This is degenerate art, you know.

As a loyal officer of the Third

Reich, I should detest it.

I've often wondered at the curious

conceit that would attempt

to determine tastes

and ideas by decree.

Many times over the past four

years I have wanted to thank you.

For not being what you'd expected?

For saving all this. Protecting it.

Do you feel free to thank me now because

the liberation of Paris is so close?


- It's not necessary.

- I could have been sent away.

Someone else brought in to

be in charge of the museum.

Perhaps I should thank you.

I was foolish.

I knew of books being burned.

Other things.

I was terrified that

these would be lost.

A book is worth a few francs.

We Germans can afford

to destroy those.

We all may not appreciate artistic

merit, but cash value is another matter.

You won't convince me

that you're cynical.

I know what these

paintings mean to you.

- You are a perceptive woman.


We're removing the paintings.

- Pack them carefully.

- Where are you taking them?

- To a safe place.

- But no place is as safe as Paris.

The city has been declared open.

It won't be bombed or shelled.


I want these at the station tomorrow,

crated and ready to be put on the train.

- What about my train?

- It has been canceled, sir.

- Who canceled it?

- I did.

- Who are you?

- Labiche, Colonel. Area Inspector.

Under my supervision, of course.

Since when does a Frenchman have the

authority to cancel a German train?

We're making up a special

armament train, Colonel.

Highest priority.

- Whose orders?

- Von Rundstedt.

Military Commander, Western Front.

How soon can my train

be cleared to leave?

As soon as I get another order.

It's your army, Colonel, not mine.

You'll get the order. Have the train

ready this afternoon at 3.30.

- Heil Hitler.

- Heil Hitler.



I'm calling for General Von Lubitz.

I want the line for the

Field Command Headquarters.

Yes, immediately!

Field Command Headquarters?

General Von Lubitz's office calling.

Colonel Muller, please.

I tried to reach you,

Colonel Von Waldheim.

The general canceled all appointments

not dealing with the evacuation of Paris.

- Is he in? Alone?

- Yes, Colonel,

but I have orders not

to let anyone in...

- What is it, Colonel?

- A train I ordered was canceled.

I've been advised your personal

authorization is now required.

Signal from General

Von Rundstedt, sir.

The highway between Avranches and

Mortain has been cut by the Americans.

You can make application

through normal channels.

You once said

normal channels were a trap,

in which to snare officers

who lacked initiative.

What's your cargo?

I don't share your

enthusiasm for art.

Even if I did, it would not be

centered on this degenerate trash.

Nor would I expect priority over

vitally needed war transport.

Good morning, Colonel.

The second SS armored division

has fallen back towards Falaise.

Report on their remaining

effective strength.

Might it not be unwise to leave a billion

gold reichsmarks in the Bank of France?

Enough money to equip

ten panzer divisions?

Make your point, Colonel.

Money is a weapon.

The contents of that train are as

negotiable as gold, and more valuable.

I feel Berlin would prefer it in

the hands of the Third Reich.

I must warn you, Colonel.

If conditions at the front become more

critical, I will rescind this authorization.


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    "The Train" STANDS4 LLC, 2021. Web. 9 May 2021. <>.

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