Drama Movie

Under sandet Countless children died like dogs on the beautiful beach

This is a film that few people know about, and it is a history that few people know about. It is a heartbreaking film, and it is a history that has brought shame to all of humanity.

The movie is based on real events. At the end of World War II, the German army was defeated. The Danish authorities forced a large number of German prisoners of war to clear the mines they had planted on Danish beaches during the war. According to historical records, about 2,000 German prisoners removed about 1.5 million mines with their bare hands, and more than half of them were killed or injured.

What’s even more frightening is that most of these prisoners were children.

In this film, it is a group of children who have not yet lost their youthfulness, who have come to a foreign country as prisoners of war and are engaged in the most dangerous work. The sentence that appears most often in their dialogue is: I want to go home.

The movie really gets into the plot from the training of a new recruit to the bomb disposal unit. The instructor begins by telling them that the Danes will not welcome you with open arms, you are only here to defuse bombs.

After a short mock training session, the recruits take turns entering a semi-enclosed environment to practice dismantling real mines.

One after another, this section in the film lasted nearly ten minutes, simply a huge flag.

In the absence of a definite protagonist’s aura, we all know that one of us will definitely become the “first one to die” by accident.

The long wait, all the viewers are suffering. On the one hand, some “look forward to” the explosion to come quickly, but also fear the arrival of the explosion.

As expected, the explosion finally came. The children were confronted with their first dead partner. They begin to realize that no one here cares about their lives, and that everyone here seems to be expecting them to die.

The movie officially begins with such sad music.

After completing their training, they are taken to a beach and begin demining under the supervision of the chief petty officer. The sergeant major is a soldier who hates Nazis so much that he even punches and kicks German POWs.

The white sandy beach, with the sky as blue as the sea in the distance, was as beautiful as a resort area. However, this was also the place where the Germans thought the Allies would land, and thus thousands of mines were planted. This beach would be the place where they would “fight” against fate, hunger, disease, mines and the Nazi-hating Danish people and soldiers.

Soon, they had their second dead partner. Plagued by severe hunger and disease, he accidentally touched a mine and his hands were blown apart, eventually dying in the hospital. A third partner died from a chain mine that blew straight to the bone. They became afraid and began to lose confidence. They were afraid they would not be able to return home, and they feared they would not be able to realize their vision of the future.

The most tragic loss comes at the end of the story, when they are all about to complete their mission and finally get all the dismantled mines on the truck to take them away, when the accident happens. It was a hellish scene when a group of children died in this accident.

As he witnessed the tragic deaths of one child after another, the Nazi-hating sergeant major became gentle with everyone. He steals food for everyone and takes them to play soccer.

The movie has a small reversal of the plot. The sergeant major, who had begun to treat the children well, became furious and angry again because his dog was tragically killed by a mine, and even began to abuse the children like dogs. Perhaps in their eyes, the lives of the Nazis were indeed inferior to that of a dog.

Of course, the film is ultimately about the glory of humanity. At the end of the story, the sergeant major completes his own redemption and eventually helps the four children who survived to escape back to Germany.

The pace of the whole film is slow, and there is no climax or conflict in the plot. But in this movie, every minute there may be a child “poo”, this is the most alarming place in this movie. A truck full of children came to this beautiful beach, and eventually only a pitiful four had a chance to go home.

But in retrospect, the Danish soldiers weren’t wrong. The Nazis had been treated like the devil before and after World War II, and even if they were children, they were the devil’s children. The war machine drove the opposing sides to hate each other in spite of everything.

In war, perhaps both the Nazis and the Allies were in fact inhumane to their enemies. Pitt in “Fury” did not hesitate to shoot surrendered enemy troops, and the Nazis did not hesitate to slaughter Jews. War is so cruel, and even for some time after the war, people were still just as cruel.

But in this movie, the children awakened the humanity within the sergeant-major with one of their own living lives. With the sound of exploding mines and the helpless cries of the children, the sergeant major slowly detaches himself from a war machine and becomes a living, human being.

The war is over, it is time to let go of the hatred; perhaps the war will come again.

Last but not least, the film has two screenings at this year’s Beijing International Film Festival, so perhaps those who have time can feel the fragility of life and the glory of humanity on the big screen for once.

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