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Situation Hopeless -- But Not Serious (1965)

Not Rated | | Comedy, War | 14 January 1966 (France)
During WW2, a lonely German air-raid warden captures two downed American airmen and keeps them prisoner in his basement way past the end of the war.

Writers:

Silvia Reinhardt (screenplay), Jan Lustig (adaptation) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Alec Guinness ... Wilhelm Frick
Mike Connors ... Sgt. Lucky Finder (as Michael Connors)
Robert Redford ... Captain Hank Wilson
Anita Höfer ... Edeltraud
Mady Rahl ... Lissie
Paul Dahlke ... Herr Neusel
Frank Wolff ... Quartermaster Master Sergeant
Elisabeth von Molo Elisabeth von Molo ... Wanda
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Storyline

During World War II, two Americans are forced to bail out and parachute into a small German town. Herr Frick, being equal parts patriotic and lonely, keeps them as prisoners of war in his bomb shelter. While his prisoners go stir crazy, Herr Frick must decide if he's willing to lose their companionship by letting them know the war has ended. Written by Sean Starke <starke@worldcom.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

What Kind of Prisoner of War Camp is THIS? See more »

Genres:

Comedy | War

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA | West Germany

Language:

English

Release Date:

14 January 1966 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

Lage hoffnungslos - aber nicht ernst See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The title is a variation of an old Viennese saying; "The situation is desperate, but not serious." A direct influence on the title comes from Billy Wilder's One, Two, Three (1961). In it, James Cagney coaches Horst Buchholz to tell Buchholz's American father-in-law that the situation is "serious, but not hopeless." A flustered Buchholz tells his father-in-law, "The situation is hopeless, but not serious." See more »

Connections

Remake of Playhouse 90: The Hiding Place (1960) See more »

Soundtracks

Situation Hopeless But Not Serious
(uncredited)
Music by Leon Carr
Lyrics by Earl Schuman
Sung by Mady Rahl
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Situation peculiar... but not hopeless
19 November 2006 | by moonspinner55See all my reviews

Two American soldiers stationed in Germany during World War II are captured by an odd German shopkeeper (Alec Guinness); he imprisons the two men in his basement and keeps them there long after the war is over. Strange, unhappy, insecure comedy-drama is extremely well-cast but is really too creepy to laugh at. As the soldiers, Michael Connors and Robert Redford have some good moments, but one can't help but feeling this is just an actors' exercise for both (they're green, but commendable). Alec Guinness is forced to walk a fine line in his characterization; it's imperative to the story that we don't hate the shopkeeper, and Guinness works hard at finding nuances in the man to keep him complex and interesting. If newcomers Connors and Redford are young actors just finding their way, then Guinness is in the Master's class. *1/2 from ****


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