Hangmen Also Die!

TitleHangmen Also Die!
Publication TypeFilm
Year of Publication1943
AuthorsLang, Fritz
Running Time2h 14min
Date Released03/27/1943
DistributorUnited Artists
CountryUnited States
Publication LanguageEnglish

Hangmen Also Die! is a 1943 noir war film directed by the Austrian director Fritz Lang, based on a story by Bertolt Brecht. The film is loosely based on the 1942 assassination of Reinhard Heydrich (1904–1942), the Nazi Reich Protector of German-occupied Prague, number-two man in the Schutzstaffel (SS), and a chief mastermind of the Holocaust, who was known as "The Hangman of Prague." The real Heydrich was assassinated by Czech resistance fighters parachuted from a British plane in Operation Anthropoid, but in the film, which was made during World War II before the full story had become public knowledge, Heydrich's killer is depicted as a member of the Czech resistance with ties to the Communist Party. The film shows the ensuing manhunt from the Gestapo and the imprisonment and execution of hundreds of innocents until Heydrich's killer is found. The production of this film being a collaboration of three prominent refugees from Nazi Germany – Fritz Lang, Bertolt Brecht and Hanns Eisler – is an example of the influence this generation of German exiles had in American culture.

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