Paris on the brink of destruction
The Nazis had big plans for Paris. After the D-Day invasion in June 1944, and as the Allies closed in on the French capital, orders were given to reduce the City of Light to the ground.
Adolf Hitler had decreed Paris must not fall to the enemy. Explosives were planted on the Eiffel Tower, in the Louvre, in Notre Dame, in other French landmarks and on bridges over the Seine, primed and ready to blow. Assigned to carry out this barbaric order was the Wehrmacht commander of Greater Paris, General Dietrich von Choltitz.
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Then on August 25, 1944 a man emerges from a secret passage in the general’s headquarters and attempts to persuade him not to push the plunger.
That man was Swedish ConsulGeneral Raoul Nordling. This extraordinary true story is revealed in the 2014 movie Diplomacy ( Diplomatie). Adapted from the play by Cyril Gely and directed by Volker Schlondorff ( The Tin Drum), the film stars acclaimed French actors Andre´ Dussolier as Nordling and Niels Arestrup as von Choltitz.
It premiered at the 64th Berlin International Film Festival in February 2014, won the 2014 Ce´sar
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In French with English subtitles, Diplomacy is being shown by Alliance Franc¸aise at Cinema Gold this Friday 30 at 7.30 pm. Entry is $25 for members and $30 for nonmembers and includes a complementary glass of wine and cheese. Tickets are available at Cinema Gold or Alliance Franc¸aise in Square Edge, and English will be spoken.
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French actor Niels Arestrup as German General Dietrich von Choltitz, the man charged with destroying Paris during World War II, in a scene from the movie Diplomacy ( Diplomatie) showing for Alliance Francaise at Cinema Gold.