This article needs additional citations for verification. (April 2014) (Learn how and when to remove this template message)
|Written by||David W. Rintels|
|Directed by||Yves Simoneau|
Max von Sydow
|Country of origin||Canada|
|Running time||180 minutes|
|Distributor||Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc.|
|Original release||July 16, 2000|
At the close of World War II, Hermann Göring (Brian Cox) surrenders to the Americans and enjoys the hospitality of a U.S. Army Air Force base. Samuel Rosenman (Max von Sydow), acting on the orders of U.S. President Harry S. Truman, recruits U.S. Supreme Court Justice Robert H. Jackson (Alec Baldwin) to prepare a war crimes tribunal against Göring and the surviving Nazi leadership. Göring, Albert Speer (Herbert Knaup) and others are arrested for war crimes and imprisoned in a U.S. Army stockade at Bad Mondorf in Luxembourg. Jackson, his assistant Elsie Douglas (Jill Hennessy), and his prosecution team fly to Germany. Psychologist Gustave Gilbert (Matt Craven) arrives at the stockade with prisoner Hans Frank (Frank Moore), who has attempted suicide.
Jackson negotiates with Allied representatives Sir David Maxwell-Fyfe (Christopher Plummer), General Iona Nikitchenko (Len Doncheff) and Henri Donnedieu de Vabres (Paul Hébert) to ensure a unified prosecution. Jackson selects the Nuremberg Palace of Justice for the site of the trials and reconstruction work commences. Göring and the others are stripped of their rank and transferred to the prison in Nuremberg, where they come into conflict with the guards under the command of the strict Colonel Burton C. Andrus (Michael Ironside). Major Airey Neave (Geoffrey Pounsett) serves Göring, Speer and the others with their indictments. U.S. judge Francis Biddle (Len Cariou) arrives to take control of the court but reluctantly passes the honour at Jackson's insistence. Following the suicide of prisoner Robert Ley (Julien Poulin), round-the-clock watches are posted and Gilbert is appointed prisoner liaison.
Sir Geoffrey Lawrence (David Francis) opens the trial with all defendants pleading not guilty, and Jackson gives a stirring opening statement. At lunch a jovial Göring holds court over the other defendants while Speer begins to show signs of remorse. Maxwell-Fyfe puts forward an emotive eyewitness account of the Nazis' genocidal policies toward Jews and others, while Jackson reads out dry documentation. As the court begins to tire of Jackson's meticulous approach, Maxwell-Fyfe urges pushing on to the witness interviews, which reveal the horrors of the concentration camps. The court is shaken by documentary footage of the camps; even Göring appears unsettled.
Speer explains Göring's dominance to Gilbert and insists that his control over the others must be broken. Göring takes the stand and begins speaking to the German people. Jackson, at Gilbert's suggestion, has Göring isolated. Under cross-examination, Göring outmaneuvers and humiliates Jackson, who later accuses Biddle of giving Göring free rein in court. Douglas talks Jackson out of tendering his resignation, and the two share a kiss. Under advice from Maxwell-Fyfe, Jackson returns to confront Göring with evidence of his crimes against the Jews and successfully dismisses the defendant’s denials.
At a Christmas party, the German housekeeper refuses to serve the Soviets, but Douglas rescues the situation before slipping away with Jackson. Gilbert visits the defendants and, under Jackson's advice, attempts to convince them to take responsibility for their crimes. Andrus relaxes the prison rules for Christmas, and Göring shares a friendly drink with his guard, Lt. Tex Wheelis (Scott Gibson). The cross-examination of the defendants intensifies and the defence calls Rudolf Höß (Colm Feore), who casually reveals the horrors of Auschwitz. Speer is implicated in the enslavement of foreign workers by fellow defendant Fritz Sauckel (Ken Kramer) and in response accepts collective responsibility for the crimes of the Nazi regime.
Gilbert interviews Göring's wife Emmy (Susan Glover), who reveals that Hitler had ordered them all executed, which led to the family's surrender. Jackson is moved by Gilbert's summation of his examinations — that the source of the evil behind Nazi Germany was a complete lack of empathy — to give an impassioned closing statement. Göring uses his final statement to condemn the trial, and is sentenced along with several others to death by hanging. Speer uses his final statement to commend the tribunal and is sentenced to 20 years in prison. Göring commits suicide after his request to be executed by firing squad is denied. Andrus presides over the executions of the others while Jackson and Douglas head home.
- Alec Baldwin as Supreme Court Justice Robert H. Jackson
- Brian Cox as Hermann Göring
- Christopher Plummer as Sir David Maxwell Fyfe
- Jill Hennessy as Elsie Douglas
- Matt Craven as Capt. Gustave Gilbert
- Christopher Heyerdahl as Ernst Kaltenbrunner
- Roger Dunn as Col. Robert Storey
- David McIlwraith as Col. John Amen
- Christopher Shyer as Brig. Gen. Telford Taylor
- Hrothgar Mathews as Thomas J. Dodd
- Herbert Knaup as Albert Speer
- Frank Moore as Hans Frank
- Frank Fontaine as Wilhelm Keitel
- Raymond Cloutier as Karl Dönitz
- Bill Corday as Alfred Jodl
- Ken Kramer as Fritz Sauckel
- Max von Sydow as Samuel Rosenman
- Sam Stone as Julius Streicher
- Douglas O'Keeffe as Baldur von Schirach
- Benoit Girard as Joachim von Ribbentrop
- James Bradford as Hjalmar Schacht
- Frank Burns as Wilhelm Frick
- Erwin Potitt as Walther Funk
- Tom Rack as Hans Fritzsche
- Roc LaFortune as Rudolf Hess
- Colm Feore as Rudolf Höss
- Dennis St. John as Franz von Papen
- Griffith Brewer as Konstantin von Neurath
- Gabriel Gascon as Erich Raeder
- Julien Poulin as Dr. Robert Ley
- Alain Fournier as Alfred Rosenberg
- René Gagnon as Arthur Seyss-Inquart
- Len Cariou as Francis Biddle
- David Francis as Geoffrey Lawrence, 1st Baron Oaksey
- Len Doncheff as Gen. Iona Nikitchenko
- Paul Hébert as Henri Donnedieu de Vabres
- Michael Ironside as Col. Burton C. Andrus
- Charlotte Gainsbourg as Marie-Claude Vaillant-Couturier
- Geoffrey Pounsett as Maj. Airey Neave
- Steve Adams as Gen. Lucius D. Clay
- Paul Hopkins as Capt. Dan Kiley
- Susan Glover as Emmy Göring
- Scott Gibson as Lt. Tex Wheelis
In the film, Göring, his wife, and daughter drove and surrendered to an unnamed American air corps base in Germany on 12 May 1945. In reality, Göring, after sending an aide to Brigadier General Robert I. Stack in which he offered to surrender to Dwight D. Eisenhower personally, was discovered and arrested in a traffic jam near Radstadt by a detachment of the Seventh United States Army, which was sent through the German lines to find him and bring him to a secure American position, on 6 May 1945.
Wilhelm Keitel was described in the film as an admiral during the defendants' sentencing. He was in fact a field marshal and would not have been identified with naval rank. However, he is correctly addressed as field marshal in other parts of the film.
In the film Jackson describes the Nuremberg's Justice Palace as "the same building where Nuremberg Laws were decreed to deprive all the German Jews all of their rights". In reality, the Nuremberg Laws were introduced by the Reichstag at a special meeting at the annual Nuremberg Rally of the NSDAP. Nuremberg's Justice Palace was, as it has always been, a regional court for the local area and the building had no association with the annual Party Rally during the Nazi era.
Justice Jackson is portrayed as initially failing in his cross-examination of Gӧring and emerging triumphant on the second day. In reality, the cross-examination was a disaster and severely damaged Jackson's reputation. This situation was recovered by Maxwell Fyfe.
The verdicts and sentences were pronounced together with all defendants present. In reality, verdicts and sentences were pronounced separately and the defendants were called one at a time into the courtroom to learn their sentence. Andrus was not present at the executions.
When the defendants were indicted by Major Neave they all made verbal statements. In reality these statements were collected by Captain Gustave Gilbert. He asked the defendants to write their first reactions on a copy of the indictments.
In the film Albert Speer was arrested when he was giving a lecture to American soldiers. In reality Speer was arrested together with Karl Dönitz and Alfred Jodl in Flensburg where they had set up a provisional government.
In the film Captain Gilbert is graciously given the right to talk to the prisoners by Col. Andrus in exchange for a library and an exercise field. In reality Gilbert was specifically appointed to talk to the prisoners by the US military. The idea was that Andrus was informed by Gilbert about the state of mind of the prisoners.
The tribunal is depicted as having four judges. In reality, there were eight, a senior and a junior from each of the four Allied powers.
|53rd Primetime Emmy Awards||Outstanding Miniseries||Nominated|
|Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Miniseries or a Movie||Won (Brian Cox)|
|Outstanding Single Camera Sound Mixing for a Miniseries or a Movie||Won|
|Outstanding Sound Editing for a Miniseries, Movie or a Special||Nominated|
|58th Golden Globe Awards||Best Mini-Series or Motion Picture made for Television||Nominated|
|Best Actor in a Mini-Series or Motion Picture made for Television||Nominated (Alec Baldwin)|
|Best Supporting Actor in a Series, Mini-Series or Motion Picture made for Television||Nominated (Brian Cox)|
|7th Screen Actors Guild Awards||Best Actor - Miniseries or TV Film||Nominated Alec Baldwin|
|Best Actor - Miniseries or TV Film||Nominated (Brian Cox)|
|16th Gemini Awards||Best Dramatic Mini-Series||Won|
|Best Direction in a Dramatic Program or Mini-Series||Nominated (Yves Simoneau)|
|Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Dramatic Program or Mini-Series||Nominated (Alec Baldwin)|
|Best Performance by an Actor in a Featured Supporting Role in a Dramatic Program or Mini-Series||Won (Brian Cox)|
|Best Photography in a Dramatic Program or Series||Nominated|
|Best Original Music Score for a Program or Mini-Series||Nominated|
|Best Production Design or Art Direction in a Dramatic Program or Series||Won|
|Best Achievement in Make-Up||Nominated|
|Best Costume Design||Nominated|
|Best Overall Sound in a Dramatic Program or Series||Nominated|
|Best Sound Editing in a Dramatic Program or Series||Nominated|
|Best Visual Effects||Won|
|2001 PGA Awards||Television Producer of the Year Award in Longform||Nominated|
|2001 Satellite Awards||Best Motion Picture Made for Television||Nominated|
|Best Performance by an Actress in a Miniseries or a Motion Picture Made for Television||Won (Jill Hennessy)|
As of 2017 part 1 & 2 was released online on Canada Media Fund's Encore+ YouTube channel.
- The 36th Infantry Division Association Library
- G.M. Gilbert, Nuremberg diaries, (New York 1974).
- Richard Overy, Interrogations. The Nazi Elite in Allied Hands, 1945 (2001).
- G.M. Gilbert, Nuremberg diaries, (New York 1974) page 3.