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The Silver Fleet 
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When the Nazis overrun Holland, they seize its largest shipyard and turn it into a production centre for their U-Boats. Jaap Van Leyden (Ralph Richardson), the shipyard's owner, is called to a meeting with the head of the Gestapo and offered a deal; collaborate and help to boost U-Boat production - or else.
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Top Customer Reviews
Margaret Fitzsimons (Wirral)
The Silver Fleet is a much better film than I was led to expect. The action is good, with a great story line and a rather sad ending.
A must for any black and white movie fan.
Instead, what you have is a finely crafted tale, well told & well-acted. If Esmond Knight is the Brian Blessed of his day (he *does* make the most of his parts!), it doesn't detract from the film as a whole. It's a wartime production, so the propaganda is there; albeit overt in only one or two places. It's not a film that attempts to chart world changing events; then again, many that do are poor. It is a product of its time and therefore somewhat predictable. In short, it's not a 5* film. But it is a very good film & a very good story nevertheless!
I gave the film 4 stars as I think that's fair for the modern audience as I think it should be seen but, in my heart, it is a 5 star film!
Directed by: Vernon Campbell Sewell & Gordon Wellesley
(VCI's slant on the synopsis)
Set during the occupation of Holland during World War II, Ralph Richardson, in a very charismatic role, stars as the owner of a Dutch shipyard who pretends to collaborate with the Nazis in order to protect his wife and fellow workers. Inspired by the memory of the Dutch historical hero Piet Hein, he forms a complicated plan to double cross the Nazis and to sabotage the two submarines he's been ordered to build for them.
The Silver Fleet a lesser known World War II film, but very well done with an excellent cast, great direction and a screenplay that has non-stop scenes loaded with tension. Ralph Richardson gives one of his best performances of his career.
A truly rousing and patriotic WWII film, with an ending that is quite moving. This film has long been under appreciated.
Special footnote: ~ Esmond Knight, who had lost an eye during the war, had not yet regained the use of his remaining eye when he played the role of Von Schiffer. Playing his part completely blind, there is only one scene when the audience can guess Knight's disability. It occurs quite briefly when Knight, about to go through a doorway, is gently steered through the door by a fellow actor.
1. Ralph Richardson
Date of Birth: 19 December 1902 - Tivoli Road, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, England, UK
Date of Death: 10 October 1983 - Marylebone, London, England, UK
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
Dutch shipyard owner Ralph Richardson (van Leyden) works with the Nazis to allow his yard to manufacture submarines. Only does he? Read morePublished 1 month ago by Alex da Silva
A quality second world war two movie, with an excellent cast, highly recommendedPublished 5 months ago by Popeye