Munich: The Edge of War (2021) | Transcript

A British diplomat travels to Munich in the run-up to World War II, where a former classmate of his from Oxford is also en route, but is working for the German government.
Munich: The Edge of War

A British diplomat travels to Munich in the run-up to World War II, where a former classmate of his from Oxford is also en route, but is working for the German government.

* * *

[murmur of conversation]

[band playing upbeat jazz]

[cutlery clinking]

[woman 1] Whoo-hoo!

[man] Yeah!

[woman 1] Whoo-hoo!

[woman 2] Let’s be off, dear.

[humming along to the band]

Hey, Ian! Are you surviving?

We should have a little bet. Ah!

Can I have some more champagne, please?

We’re not serving any more.

Oh, come on. Please.

I’m awfully sorry.

Please. Please!

I’m very sorry.

Thank you.

[man] What you English will never understand is…

Is that it is a question of identity.

No, more than identity.

I’m talking about…

Hugh, wake up!

I’m talking about a country so…

I need to sleep.

Are you listening to me at all?

[Hugh] I’m listening. I’m listening to every word.

You’re not listening.

What are you doing?

Here is what I am gonna do.

I want to feel something real!

Here is something real!



Bring it over! He’s dying! He needs it!

[band finishes]


[ball-goers cheering]

Behold the glassy waters of the Isis!

[man] Shut up, Paul!

Love you, too, even you doubters!

Oh, put a sock in it!

Paul, come back!

We make hay today!

You know, the dream is coming to an end, and we have to celebrate that!

We have to celebrate! Come on!

Oh, thank God. Tell him to get out.

If he wishes to go for a midnight swim, that’s entirely his decision.

[grunts] I don’t want to go swimming.

I want to throw myself into the water in despair at our mad generation.


Excellent. Go ahead.


[both cheer]

Mm. Let me have it.

[man] Get crazy!


[Hugh] Oh.

Mmm. I…

Stop drinking.



[Paul] Mmm.

Pl… please. Ugh.

[Paul] Mmm!

Come on! There’s three of us here.

[woman laughs]

[Paul] Mmm.

Now you’re just doing it because I’m here.

Look at this boy.

So English. So English!

Leave him alone!

Always this!

What’s wrong with being English?

This is what I’ve learned at Oxford.

We have another lesson.

The great characteristic of the English…

[Hugh] Mm-hm?

…Is distance.



Not only from one another but from feeling.

Mm. Mm-hm.

We are nothing but feeling.

[woman] Mm-hm.

There’s a new age beginning.

[in German] In the New Germany. You can look forward to that.

The New Germany.

[in English] Yes.

It’s a bunch of thugs and racists.


Germany is the proudest nation on earth.

[Hugh] Really?

You’ll see when you stay with us in Munich. You’ll see.


I’ll protect you.

[in German] Give me a cigarette.

[in English] No. It’s my last one.

We’ll have to share.

I’ll take it.

You’re good.

You can do it.

Keep it in.




Okay, okay.

Is it hot?

[ball-goers cheering]


[cheering and laughing]

It’s our mad generation!

It’s our mad generation.




[woman 1 shouting] Gas masks! Don’t you want to come see?

[man 1] Just hold it steady.

[woman 1] Gas masks!

Gas masks! Come and get your masks now!

[man 1] Will you pull on that rope?

If you don’t know how, I’ll get your mother to show ya!

Excuse me.

It’s all right.

[man 1] Right. Don’t… Just shut it, and get on with it!

Now pull on the left!

That’s it, gentle, not too much!

You need to hold her steady.

[man 2] Yeah!

[man 1] Yes, that’s good. Keep her steady.

That’s better, lads. Now we’re performing.

No, no, no, look. For God’s sake, she’s stuck on the stonework!

[man 2] Careful!

[man 1] Just be gentle. Gentle.

[man 3] Come on!

What are you doing, wrenching it about?

[man 3] I’m trying!

Well, try…

[man 4] This… this side.

[man 5] Watch out!

[man 6] Look, at the end of the day…

[woman 2] Is that right?

[man 3] Come on, guys.

[woman 3] What’s round there?

[man 7] They’ll stop anything flying.

[piano playing gentle melody]

[Hugh] I know. I said I’d be on time.

There’s no need for the sackcloth and ashes.

I was late myself.



Thank you.

What’s this?

It’s Arthur’s gas mask.

I’ve just been to collect it.


Didn’t realise they made them in children’s sizes.

Well, it’s new to all of us, isn’t it?

Apparently, when the call comes, I have to put his on first.

Tests motherly devotion, don’t you think?


Can I have a drink? I’m parched.


Half a bottle of Chablis.

Certainly, sir.



What’s going on over there?

I can’t talk about it.

I don’t think anyone’s listening.

Hitler wants the Sudetenland.

He expected the Czechs to roll over, but he’s underestimated them.

Yes, I…

They won’t give it up without a fight.

If there’s no agreement tomorrow, Germany will mobilise, and France and Britain will be obliged to defend Czechoslovakia.

As soon as that happens…

Thank you.

Remember eating lunch here the day after the wedding?

Yes, Hugh. I got poisoned by that dreadful fish.

Yes. Sorry. God!

Sorry, I forgot.

[laughing] It’s all right.

Still, it’s one of the best spots in London.

Mm. Yes.

I wish we could go upstairs, take a room, and stay in bed all afternoon.

Well, what’s stopping us?

Arthur’s with Nanny, and, well, this place hardly seems full.

[whispers] Why don’t you go and see if you can arrange it?

You know I can’t.

Do I?

I’m due back at 2:30.

Why would you ask me…

You brought it up.

I’m trying to make an effort. As requested.

I know.

Mr. Legat, Downing Street is on the line for you.

[groans] Hell.

I have to take it.

Of course.

I thought, perhaps, some privacy.

Thank you.

This is Legat.

[man] I’m afraid you’ll have to come back, old man. Cleverly’s asking for you.

Looks as though talking’s over in Berlin.


Sir Horace Wilson’s flying home.

I’m on my way.

As fast as you can. He’ll kill us both.


[wife] 83 Lord North Street, please.

[man] What surname?


Lunch at the Imperial Grand in the middle of an international crisis.

Might be the way things are done in the Foreign Office…

I apologise, sir. It won’t happen again.

No explanation?

It’s my wedding anniversary.


There are times when one’s family has to take a back seat.

Now is such a time.

[clock ticking]

Has Syers filled you in?

I gather talks have broken down.

All hell’s about to break loose. Hitler intends to mobilise tomorrow.

At six o’clock, the PM will make a radio broadcast to the nation, and I’d like you to deal with the BBC.

Has any… Excuse me, sir. Has anyone spoken to the Czechs?


I just thought that bringing the Czech…

I’m sure the PM doesn’t require suggestions from you, Legat.

Yes, sir.

[crowd shouting]

[man] I have to say,

this comes at the worst possible time for us, Prime Minister.

Prime Minister, Sir Horace is here.

Well, it would seem you have some work to do, gentlemen.

Please don’t let me stand in your way.

Prime Minister.


[protesters yelling in street]

Shall I show him in, sir?

Oh, certainly.


[Wilson] Thank you, Osmund.

Prime Minister.


I expect you’re pleased to be back.

How was it? How did it go?

Ah, well, it started atrociously and went downhill from there.


He won’t wait a day longer before invading.


I warned him this morning that if the French fulfil their obligations, then we’ll have to go in with them.

What did he say to that?

He smiled at me.


Even more disconcerting than when he’s shouting.

But the message was clear enough.

He’s going to mobilise tomorrow.

[in German] Nice dress she’s wearing.

[officer 2] For the parade.


Sir, have you chosen something yet?

Coffee, black.

Right away.


How did it go?

Anything for you, sir?

No, thank you.

Today, he did nothing but yell at them.

The talks with the English are over once and for all. He’s fed up.

Eventually, Henderson just stayed silent.

Wilson got up and left. Right to the airport and back to London.

And to prove that he means business, this madman is now sending a parade of tanks up Wilhemstraße.

Straight to the British Embassy.


So, we’ll mobilise tomorrow.

Are you sure?

I’m sure.

Then we only have a few hours left.


Oster is talking to the generals right now.

We’ll meet tonight.

New place, Alt-Berlin. Ten o’clock.

I have to get back.

Damn, I really am scared shitless.

[girl 1] Can we feed the pigeons?

[girl 2] Yes.

[man] Oh, they’re hungry.

What’s your name?

[girl 2] Margarete.

[man] Here.

[girl 1] Come here.

[man] You’re not afraid of me, are you?

[pigeons cooing]

Frau Limpert?


I’ll take care of it.

All right.

Can you tell Herr Plassman, please?

I will.


[static humming]

[tuning radio]

[static humming]

Here, let me.

I can do it.

Herr von Hartmann.

I can do it.


[static crackling]


[Big Ben chiming]

May I?

[man sighs]

[Big Ben chimes two o’clock]

[announcer, in English] This is London.

In a moment, you will hear the prime minister, the Right Honourable Neville Chamberlain, speaking from Number 10 Downing Street.

His speech will be heard all over the Empire, throughout the continent of America, and in a large number of foreign countries.

Mr. Chamberlain.

I want to say a few words to you, men and women of Britain and the Empire.

How horrible and fantastic it is that we should be digging trenches and trying on gas masks here because of a quarrel in a faraway country between people of whom we know nothing.


Both Herr Hitler and the Czechs have made their case regarding the Sudetenland passionately.

Herr Hitler has told me privately, and last night repeated publicly, that when this question is settled, it is the end of Germany’s territorial claims in Europe.

[in German] Damn fool.

[Chamberlain, in English] Now, I ask you to await, as calmly as you can, the events of the next few days.

As long as war has not begun, there is always hope that it may be prevented.

And you know that I am going to work for peace to the last moment.

Good night.

And you’re off air, Prime Minister.

Oh, good.

Well done, sir. No wobbles at all.


Uh, photograph.

There we are. As if I’m reading.

Very good. Thank you so much.

Well navigated, sir.


[chuckles] Thank you.

Do you know, I always think the trick is to try to imagine I’m just speaking to one person sitting at home in an armchair.

Of course, tonight, it was a little bit harder because there was somebody else lurking in the shadows.

Herr Hitler.




[in German] You’re taking it to the Chancellery yourself?

Yes. I’m very curious to see how Hitler will reply.

What about after?



After, I have an appointment in Mitte.

I see. An “appointment”?


How mysterious.

Well, until next time, Herr von Hartmann.

Mrs. Winter.

[door closes]

[in English] For goodness’ sake!

All right!

That should have gone in first.

Got everything in hand. Cecily?

Yes, that’s got to go.

Where should I sit?

You off, then, Appleby?

We are.

I’ll sit in the front.

Good luck with it.

Thank you.

Be well.

[Cecily] I’ll sit in the front, then.


[Appleby] Come along, dear.

[door closes]


[sighs heavily]

[running upstairs]


I’m sorry, I… I wasn’t expecting…



[clock chiming]

What was that?


He made me jump.

He’s been waiting for you.

I’m glad you’re home.

I have to grab my overnight bag and get back. I don’t have long.

You’re staying over?

Apparently, I’m needed.

Well, you’re needed here too.


What’s happening?

Pack a week’s worth of clothes, and drive him to your parents’ right away.

Can you tell me why?

I need to know you’re somewhere safe.

I won’t go without you.

Oh, Pamela. I’m afraid you have to.

By tonight, it could be hard to get out.

Tell them you have a son, and we need you tonight!

I have no power…

You can go tomorrow.

Impossible. It’s too important.

It’s not more important than your family.


That’s very clear.

Darling, I…

Get off me!

You’re being unreasonable.

Right, I’m being unreasonable?

I’m always hysterical in the face of your fucking calmness!

Do you not think there are things worth…

I mean, this is your marriage. This is your family!

And I know I’m upset, and I know how much you hate that, but your silence is killing me!


We’ll be packed and gone in an hour.

[clock ticking]

No one forced you to marry me, Hugh.

You act like it’s a sentence from a judge.

You chose this.

I don’t…

It is not my fault that you are disappointed by your life.

I can’t talk about this now.

Right, yes. Of course you can’t.

[walking upstairs]


[in German] Get that stuff in there.

We need two people for the couch.


I need to do this first.

[woman] Do you need a worker?

Do you need a worker?


Do you need a worker?

Do you need a worker?

Paulie? No way. I can’t believe it.


Franz Sauer.

Little Paulie!

How are you?

Still busy as a beaver. How about you? Where are you headed?


To the British Embassy.

I’m delivering the official reply to Chamberlain’s radio broadcast.




No kidding?

Who would’ve thought that you’d be delivering messages between world leaders?

And I’d be protecting the Führer himself.

You’re with the bodyguard?

Führer Escort Command.

One of 27.


Paulie, one of just 27.


But everyone always knew that you’d make it to the top one day.

It baffles me every day that I have.

Nonsense. We’ve always been winners.

Not me.


Back on our soccer team?

But no thanks to me.

That was you, Franz. Our opposition peed their pants in fear of you.

Yeah, there was no getting past. Certainly not past me.

Well, Paul, don’t let me keep you. Hurry along. Duty calls.

I’ll see you around, Franz.

Not if I see you first, Paulie von Hartmann!


[man] Hey! Those aren’t your potatoes!

[men talking]

[in English] Hugh! You’re to take this straight upstairs to the PM.

What is it?

Reply from Berlin.



Here. Thank you.

We’d be abandoning the people of Czechoslovakia to the Nazis.

We would not be abandoning them.

Excuse me, sir.

It’s Hitler’s reply to your broadcast.

Ah, good. Good, good, good.





[Chamberlain] No. He’s not changing his mind.

You know, we might…

Uh, Legat, would you fetch my copy of The Times from my office?

Yes, sir.

Oh, I’ve got one here.

Right. Is it today’s?


[Chamberlain] Oh, good. Now, let’s see what we’ve got here.

Hitler’s speech is page 17, sir.

17, very good.

There we are. Good. Now, there’s…

Something has been niggling at me since I read this.

“We never found a single great power in Europe with a man at its head who has as much understanding for the distress of our people as my great friend Benito Mussolini.”

See what I mean?


I’m not sure I do.

If Herr Hitler is not going to listen to me…


…maybe he’ll listen to his great friend Benito Mussolini.

Now, Legat, I want you to take this to the cipher room and have it telegraphed immediately to Jimmy Drummond, our ambassador in Rome.

Yes, Prime Minister.

Hadn’t you better tell the foreign secretary you’re writing to the Italians?

Oh, damn the foreign secretary.


Oh, Legat, forget you heard that.

[man 1, in German] Scrub…

Look at them! Watch closely!

This is the place where the Jew belongs.

[crowd jeering]

[horn beeps]

[man 1] Keep scrubbing!

I said keep scrubbing!


Into the cracks, as well. Keep scrubbing! I said keep scrubbing!

[man 2] You missed a spot!

Look at him, this Jewish pig!

How his presence ruined the very ground!

[woman sings in German] ♪ Your soft breath gives solace… ♪

The cracks as well.

Keep scrubbing! I said keep scrubbing!

♪ In your arms ♪

♪ For hours walking barefoot ♪

♪ Over the soft moss ♪

♪ You’re silently dreaming ♪

♪ Of strange star signs ♪

♪ The golden locks ♪

♪ Kindled by the moon ♪

♪ I see the longing ♪

♪ But you can’t stay… ♪


Thought you’d got lost.


Very strange to meet you here, Lieutenant Colonel.

I’ve never seen you out of uniform.

One second.

Andi, three schnapps.

[Andi] Three schnapps, coming right up.

Go ahead.

Everyone was there, all the top-ranking defence generals.

And they all confirmed again that there is strong opposition to a war with the Czechs.

This is the moment we’ve been waiting for.

At two o’clock tomorrow, when Hitler gives the order to invade, the Wehrmacht will step in.

And the three of us are the key.

What exactly does that mean?

We go to the Chancellery.

We make sure that all important entry points are clear.

Then we give the signal to step in, and Hitler will be arrested.

You believe that the Wehrmacht will take action against him?

War with the Czechs, that’s…

That means war with Britain and France.

That’s crazy! It’s the last thing the generals want.

Right, Hans. But still, I don’t trust the generals.

They’re not opposed to him.

They’re just opposed to war because they’re scared they’ll lose it.

Is this really the only plan?

[Hans] It’s the only plan we have, Erich.

[Erich] It all sounds so incredibly fragile.

Have you ever wondered if we’re wrong?

What if we’re mistaken?

What if he’s right, and he’s telling the truth that he just wants to take back the territories that belong to Germany?

And he’ll stop there?

Then leave, Erich.

He’s a small, vulgar man. Hitler is like a thug.

He only knows his own personal truth. He’ll keep taking more and more.

More people will get hurt.

How do you know?

He’ll never stop!

It’s not the time to argue!

Tomorrow, tomorrow is the day…

[Andi] Three schnapps.

[woman singing softly in German]

Are you with us, Erich?

Let’s assume Hitler gets arrested tomorrow.

What happens then?

We shoot the bastard.

If he doesn’t surrender.

Tomorrow at two o’clock, we will hear that mobilisation is beginning.

That will be our cue.

Friends, history is watching us.

Sometime tomorrow night, this whole nightmare will be over.

♪ I see the longing… ♪


♪ But you can’t stay ♪

♪ Come dance through the blue night ♪

♪ With me one more time ♪

[sighs heavily]

[machinery clanking]

[machinery whirring]

[voices echoing]

[Winter] What? You want to arrest him?

[Paul] That’s the plan, yeah.

You think that could work?


This Wehrmacht will turn against the boss?

Never. Mark my word. I was married to a general.

Your husband was a disloyal arsehole.

Yes, to me, maybe, but never to Hitler.

When he mobilises tomorrow, we will stop him.

You want him to mobilise?

Yes, damn it!

[whispers] If he doesn’t go to war, you can’t stop him.

But, Paul, that means you need this war. That’s totally perverse.

Of course that’s perverse, Helen. Without a crime, there can be no arrest.


I’m considering if I should trust you.


You’ve already trusted me.

This is something different.

What is it?



What’s this?

I got it from the Foreign Office. I took it today.

What’s this?

This is his true plan for Europe.



They’ll arrest you for this.

I’m aware.

[Paul sighs]

This is appalling.

What are you going to do with it?

What are you going to do with it?

[knocking at door]

Come in.

Letting you know I’ll be upstairs, sir. If you need me.

Righto. Oh, you’re on tonight, are you?

Yes, sir. I’m here till the morning.

Oh, good. Any reply from Rome?

Not yet, sir.

But, you know, it wasn’t built in a day.

Hah! [chuckles]

Far as I can see, they haven’t finished it yet. [chuckles]

Are you an Oxford man?

Yes, Prime Minister.

Aah. Come on in. Close the door a minute.

Terribly draughty, this place.

What did you read at Oxford?


Did they teach you to write English as well?

[laughs] Well, they did their best.

I was more of a talker than a writer, though, sir. Debating was my thing.


Yes, sir.

Well, you’ve come to the right place.

It’s all anybody seems to do here is to debate.

Listen, I’ve got something I’m going to ask you to do.

It’s a little bit impertinent, but this is my speech for tomorrow to the House.

But I… I feel somehow it doesn’t flow, and maybe… maybe an Oxford man, who… who debates and… and reads German, might be able to improve it a little.

Would you mind?

Of course, Prime Minister.

Thank you so much.

Very good. Good night.

Good night, sir.

[murmur of conversation]

I’m sorry…

How are you?

Ah, this looks promising.


Make sure you got your camera.


[officer] All right? Okay.

Yes, sir.

Just keep an eye on them.

Nothing from Rome, Prime Minister.

Oh. Huh.

Still early. Just have to be patient and wait.


Do you know, I’d gladly stand against that wall and be shot if it prevented war.

Come here.

I wish you wouldn’t say things like that.


At least not before lunch.


Of course, you were too young to serve in the Great War, Legat.


And I was too old.

Somehow, that made things worse.

It is absolute agony to…

See such suffering and…

Feel so powerless.

Oh. Right.

Now every time I…

Pass a war memorial or…

Visit one of those vast cemeteries in France, where so many of my friends lie buried, I vow that if I find myself in the position where I could prevent such a catastrophe from happening again, I shall do anything…

Sacrifice anything…

To maintain the peace.

This is sacred to me.

I understand.

Ah, it’s not that we’re militarily unprepared for war.

That can be remedied, is being remedied.

It’s… it is rather that I… I fear for the spiritual wellbeing of our people if they don’t see their leaders doing everything, absolutely everything, to prevent another conflict.

‘Cause of one thing, I’m certain.

If it comes, the next war will be infinitely worse than the last.

And they will need even greater fortitude to survive it.



Oh, it’s all right. It’s all right.

[kisses] Come on. Let’s go in.

This is Joan, Mr. Legat. She’s our fastest.

Joan, stop what you’re doing now.

Mr. Legat needs you to type up the PM’s speech for the House.

Of course.

Thank you.

Thank you for doing this so quickly.

You’re most welcome.

If you could make four copies, please.

These notes in red, these amendments, if you can put them in where they are.

Absolutely, thank you.

Uh, could you, um… stand a little further away, please?

Right, sorry.

Sorry, Miss, um…

Joan will be sufficient.

And if you want to know where I’m from…

[Hugh] I…

…the answer is Nottingham.



[knocking at door]


Sorry for my delay, sir.

Ah! Legat, good, good.

Now, we can’t risk losing the connection to Berlin.

Syers has the line to Rome, so I want you to sit here…

Bring that chair over.

…and keep the line open and listen out for news.

Do you think you can manage that?

Of course, sir.

What exactly am I listening for?

To see whether Mussolini’s intervened.

The PM needs to know before he addresses the House.

Things are getting tight.

Yes. That is painfully obvious.

[door opens]


Not yet.




I’m afraid we do need to leave now, sir.


You address the House in ten minutes.

Yes, I know.



Nothing, sir.

The line’s open?

The line’s open. No reply.



Yes, all right!

If news comes once the PM is speaking, Legat, bring it to the chamber immediately.

Yes, sir.

Is Anne here?

She’s gone on ahead.

She’ll be in the gallery, as will I.

Your hat, sir.

Thank you so much.


God bless you, Mr. Chamberlain!

[man] Mr. Chamberlain!


Good luck, sir.

We’re all behind you. God bless you.


[clock ticking]

[watch ticking]

[ticking grows louder]

[crackling on line]


[man] This is the ambassador.

Mr. Henderson, this is Hugh Legat, the prime minister’s private secretary.

I just returned from Herr Hitler. Where’s the PM?

[Chamberlain] For His Majesty’s Government, there were three alternative courses that might have been adopted.

Either we could have threatened to go to war with Germany if it attacked Czechoslovakia, or we could have stood aside and allowed matters to take their course.

Or finally, we could attempt a peaceful settlement by way of mediation.

[MPs] Hear, hear.

I know very well that I have opened myself to criticism on the grounds that I was detracting…

It’s a message from Berlin.

[Chamberlain] …from the dignity of a British prime minister, and to disappointment and perhaps even resentment…

[murmuring] …if I failed to deliver a satisfactory agreement.


[MPs whispering and muttering]


[exhales heavily]

[MPs murmuring]

I am…

Able to report to the House that I have just received news from Berlin that Herr Hitler has postponed mobilisation.


Guten Tag.

Furthermore, he has invited me…

[man] Very well done, Prime Minister!

…along with Signor Mussolini and the prime minister of France, Monsieur Daladier, to meet him in Munich tomorrow…

[knocking at door]

…to resolve the Sudetenland issue.

[MPs cheering]

[in German] Gentlemen.

Is it starting?


Mussolini talked Hitler into a conference with Chamberlain and Daladier.

Tomorrow in Munich.

They’re going to sacrifice the Sudetenland to prevent war.

Damn it!

They’re doing exactly what he wants.

Will the Wehrmacht move against him?

We can forget about that.

Not a chance.

So this is it?

God damn it!

Honestly, please.

Pardon me.

What do the gentlemen plan on doing?

It’s as good as decided. A conference like this is a formality.

You need to find a way to meet Chamberlain.

You have to prevent this agreement from being made.


Thank God you can still laugh.

Show him the proof.

What proof?

That Hitler is bent on a war of conquest.

I am in possession of a document.

What kind of document?

[Paul] Trust me, please.


Can I just…

Just a moment…

Hugh Legat is one of Chamberlain’s secretaries.

Can you arrange for him to come to Munich? That he’s part of the English delegation?

Possibly, yes.

Will he be expecting…


But he will help us.

All right.

Right, I’ll do what I can.


[door closes]

And can you get Paul into the conference?

I’ll try and add you as an interpreter.

I have to get back.

What’s happening here?

Do you think you can smuggle illegal documents into an international conference and have a secret meeting with the British prime minister, right under the Führer’s nose?



Oh, Paul?

Then you should have this with you.

Ever used one?

As children, we used to shoot rabbits.

[both laugh]

This is different.

The principle’s the same, right?


[in English] Sir Alexander? I got a message you wanted to see me.

[Cadogan] Ah, Legat. Yes.

Close the door.

What’s this about, sir?

[Cadogan] This is Colonel Menzies from MI6.


Good evening.

I believe the name Paul von Hartmann is known to you?

[Cadogan] Legat?


Yes, sir. We were at Oxford together.

When did you last see him?

Uh, the summer of ’32. I visited him in Munich.

All roads lead to Munich.

Any contact since?


Why not?

We had a disagreement.

What about?


And you haven’t communicated since?

No, sir.

We’re sorry about the questions, Legat, but we need to understand what sort of relationship you have, or had, with this particular German.

It seems your friend is part of the secret opposition to Hitler.

His position inside the Foreign Ministry gives him access to classified material.

Material he’s willing to share with us.

Or, more specifically, with you.

How do you feel about that?


[Cadogan] But…

Are you willing to take matters further?

I don’t understand.

He has a document in his possession, and we’d very much like to know what it is.

We’d like you to go to Munich tomorrow, meet with von Hartmann, and get the document.

I beg your pardon?

It’s not without risk.

Technically, it’ll be an act of espionage on foreign soil.

This kind of thing, sir, I…

I’m not really…

No one is at first, but you’ll do fine.

Duty calls, Legat.

I’m not sure how Cleverly will feel…

[Cadogan] Leave Cleverly to us.

Absolutely. We know Oscar.

And the PM doesn’t need to know.


Good luck, Legat.


[crowd shouting in German]

[man] The German Reich! Vote for the German Reich!

Which government is in the right? The answer is…

Cast your pivotal vote!

[in English] I was recommended a bar called “Hubers.”

Yeah, we know it.

Yeah, we know it.


We know Hubers.


Not great.

[man shouting in German]

[in English] Yes, great. Ah!

The beer’s cheap, and apparently, they have live music.

Believe me, the music there is awful.

Awful music is my favourite kind of music.

Mine too. Paul.

Yeah. See?

[in German] It’s his vacation. He’s the guest.

[in English] Hugh gets to choose.




[in German] Thirsty!

[band plays upbeat jazz]

[Hugh, in English] You can go there. There is one. He took coffee there.

It’s on my little list, which you all made fun of.

I don’t want to go to this… this rally.

Yeah, but I want to go to the rally.

[in German] You’re not going there.


You’re too drunk, Lena.

I see. I’m too drunk.

I’m going.

Well, I won’t come. Not with you two.

Okay, then don’t.

[in English] Hugh will come.


Do I have to go?

You have to actually see the man.

If he’s so ridiculous, why not just ignore him?

Ignore him? We cannot ignore him. He’s dangerous!

No, but this is fuelling the fire, Lena.


This is what he wants. Attention.

He’s talking about things that matter!

Oh, come on, Paul.

There’s a reason people attend rallies.

Paul, he’s a bigot and a pervert.


The people of a whole country forgot about what makes them as a nation, and now that there is someone to lead them and to remind them of their nation’s greatness…

I don’t understand how anyone can vote for this man.

Voting for Hitler is not voting against Jews.

Not against Jews?

It’s voting… No!

It’s voting for the future.

The future?

[Lena] For the future?

Yes! Yes!

What future?

I’ll show you!

[in German] You lot, hey! Can I ask you something?


What do you want?

Who are you going to vote for?


What do you think of Hitler?

Hitler makes us proud to be German again!

Thank you! Thank you very much.

Who are you lot going to vote for?

[man] Hitler!

Thank you.

[in English] See? The future.

[all cheering] Yes!

[in English] Now, Paul, you have to be careful, because people are scared.

Yes, scared of change.

[in German] Paul, people are leaving the country.

Families are getting on boats to America.

If that’s what they decide, they are free to do so.

They don’t just decide like that!


People don’t want to live here any more.

They are scared to live in this country. That’s not just bullshit!

[in English] The Germany you’re speaking of is being built upon the suffering of other people.

You’re one to talk about exploiting others, Englishman.

Oh, all right.

I take it. I’m a hypocrite. But I know fanaticism when I see it.

[in German] Fa-na-ti-cal.

[in English] You think I’m a fanatic?

I think he’s a fanatic, and you are defending him.

You sound like him.

[in German] Fuck you!

[in English] Hey!

What? You want to say something to me?

I don’t like you speaking like that.

I don’t like you talking as if you knew what any of this feels like!

I don’t think you understand this feeling you’re…

No, no, no.

You don’t understand anything about me or about Germany!

[speaking German]

You never for a second ever forget your triumph!

[man 1, in German] Be quiet!

[man 2] Exactly!

You’re talking down to me like a child. I’m supposed to be grateful for that?

I’m sick of being grateful! And I’m sick of you too.


[clears throat]

[in English] I’m… I’m so sorry.

You don’t have to be sorry.

[sighs] I don’t… I don’t understand this.

We always used to enjoy provoking each other. It…

It was fun, but this is… this is different. I’ve not seen him like that.

[sniffling] Me neither.

[sobs] I mean…

Shall we…

See some bigots and perverts?



Heil Hitler.

Heil Hitler.

[horn beeps]

[in German] Well?

Here are your papers.

They barely got you on the list.


Are you coming?

Someone needs to make sure you don’t do anything stupid.

Go, hurry. See you in Munich.


This is your compartment.

Thank you.

[train whistle blows]

[announcement over loudspeaker in German]

[footsteps approaching]

[man 1] Cramped but cosy, huh?

[man 2] Yeah!

[man 1] Helmut, no visits from women.

[Helmut] Of course, you know me.


[man 1] This is me.

There’s someone in there already. Hello?

[Paul] Yes.



Hello, Franz.

What are you doing here?

It seems they need my help…

I see.

…with interpreting.

No one told me.

Yes, it was a last-minute decision.

[Franz] Huh.

Is this your bunk?


Then we’re roommates.


Like in the old days.


Like in the old days!

Yeah, excellent!

Excellent, right?




Okay, may I? One second.


See you in a bit, I…

See you.

[whistling merrily]

[train whistle blows]

[toilet flushes]

[crowd shouting]

Thank you, Legat.

[man] Prime Minister, don’t let us go to war again.

[man] Good luck, sir.

Nice of you. I’ll make sure we don’t.

[woman] Sir, you can really do this.

Good morning.

We should board, Prime Minister.

Thank you very much.

[man] Mr. Chamberlain!

Give us a statement!

[Wilson] Prime Minister?


He’ll give us…


Good luck, sir.

Yes, indeed.

Prime Minister, please.

Thank you.

Thank you. That’s enough.

[Chamberlain] I’m going to say a word.

[Wilson] We should board now, sir.

[clears throat] When I was a boy, I used to repeat, “If at first you don’t succeed, try, try, try again.”

And that’s what I’m doing now.


[man] Good luck, Mr. Chamberlain!

[woman 1] Safe journey, sir!

[woman 2] Protect us, sir!


[muffled voices in corridor]


[toilet flushes]


[in German] You caught me.

Can I assist you?

I know it looks bad, but it’s nothing personal.

We all have our orders.

I’m relieved to be able to tell you that everything is in order.

You can put it back now.

Thank you so much.

Come on, Paulie. Are you cross now?

Do I hear you being cross now? Is Paulie cross?

Cross little Paulie!


Paulie, come on!


Defend yourself!

Come on, defend yourself!


Von Hartmann?

I am.

Dr. Schmidt. Head of translation. Do you have a moment?

Of course.

I’m very pleased to meet you.

I’m relieved I don’t have to do all of it by myself.

When we arrive in Munich, I will handle the Führer, the Duce, the Prime Minister, and the Président du Conseil.

And you can deal with the smaller stuff.

What other languages do you speak?

[in each language] French, Italian, and a little, really just a little bit of Ru…

[in German] The Russians aren’t invited, and neither are the Czechs.

Don’t worry. I’ll brief you on the details later.

Right now, the Führer is waiting for his foreign press summary.

Can you take care of that?

Right now?

Yes, right now.

[Paul] Uh…

What do I have to do?

Look him in the eye.

Don’t speak unless you’re spoken to directly.

And don’t smell of smoke.

If you stink of smoke, he’ll throw you out.

[train whistle blows]

Heil Hitler.

Heil Hitler.

Von Hartmann, press summary for the Führer.

Who wrote this?

That’s the editorial in the London Times, my Führer.

Have you spent time in England?

I was at Oxford for two years.

I can hear that.

Von Hartmann.

You’re ambitious. Good.

You’re intelligent. Good.

Maybe you think you’re more intelligent than me?

I… I can read people.

The way professors at those universities read books.



I see who you are.

Do you see me?

Yes, my Führer.

You know the English. What are they thinking?

They underestimate you.


[door opens]

The maps, my Führer.

The new course for the border.

We have 40 divisions to destroy the Czechs with.

We could have it done within a week.

Yes, my Führer.

The train is heading in the wrong direction.

Why these detours?

Good, thank you.

[crowd shouting]



[in French] How was your flight?

Oh! It was very uncomfortable.


I have a very sore back.

[whispering in German]

[Chamberlain, in English] Look at this.

Would you care for something to drink?

[Chamberlain] Ah… Yes. A little, ah… whisky and water.

[man] Whisky mit Wasser.

[man, in German] Welcome.

[in English] A great pleasure.

[man] Our friend Hermann Göring.

[in German] Hello.

Welcome. Pardon me.

[in English] Good morning.

[in German] Welcome.




We’ll talk upstairs. Tell him that.


Just the four of us. You and one advisor each.

Yes, my Führer.

Thank you.

[man 1] …saw him carry himself with confidence.

[man 2] Indeed.

I’ll go give him the rest.

I require a watch. Lend me yours, please.

He apparently thinks he won’t get it back. He thinks the Führer is a watch thief.

[Hitler chuckles]

He thinks he’s one of the clever ones.

Well, let’s get it over with.

[Schmidt] Very well, sir.

[in English] Rather too strong, this. I need to… Ah.

[Schmidt] Excuse me, Your Excellencies.

Prime Minister, Monsieur le Président du Conseil.

The Führer invites you to join him in the library…

Very good. Come along.

…In order to begin the talks.

He suggests leaders and one advisor only.


Well. Sorry, Henderson. Horace, looks it better be you.

[in German] Well, please excuse me a moment.


[murmured conversations in German]

[rapid typing]

It was a mistake not to insist on the Czechs being in the negotiations.

They’re carving up the damn country, and there’s no one…

Please try to stop fidgeting, Mr. Legat. You’ll wear that chair down to a splinter.

[telephone rings]


Yes, this is Cleverly.

Sir, it’s Legat.

Yes. Where’s the PM?

Everyone’s been at the conference for about an hour now, sir.

Good, good, good.

Sir Horace asked me to stay here, but I feel I’d be more…

Make sure this line remains open.

With respect, I feel I’d be more useful to the PM if I was at the conference.

Just do your job, Legat.

But having come all of this way…

Absolutely not!

You stay exactly where you are.

Hello? Sir?




If London calls again, I can always tell them you’re busy with the hotel manager.

They’ll believe that, I’m sure.


[in German] Oh, sorry!

Watch it!

[church bell ringing]

Your ID, please.

[conversation and laughter]

[man] Monsieur.


Bien sûr.

Excuse me. Sir Neville?


I’m Hugh Legat.

Ah, Legat. Yes, of course. What are you doing here?

I had a couple of queries from London.

Is Sir Horace in?

No. No, he’s with the PM and the other leaders.

Is there anything you can tell me?

[sighs] Nothing pressing.

[in German] Hartmann, have you noticed how often Göring changed outfits today?

This is the third uniform I’ve seen him wear today.


But don’t let that… Oh, there’s Schmidt. He needs you.

The Führer wishes for the ambassadors to join now.

Fetch François-Poncet and Henderson. Quickly, please.

[in English] How’s it going?

Haven’t a clue.

[in French] Mr. Ambassador.

[in English] Would you like some tea?

Thank you.

Tea, if you’d be so kind.

[woman, in German] Right away.

[in English] Your Excellency, would you be so good as to join the leaders in the library?

At last.

[in German] I… Follow me without anyone seeing.

[door opens]

[soldiers speaking German]

[in English] Where the hell are you going?

[tram bell ringing]

[horn blares]

[bicycle bell rings]

-[in German[] Hello.

Do you happen to have the time?

No. I’m sorry.

Thanks anyway.

[in English] Damn it.


[jazz playing]

[in English] Were you followed?

I don’t know.

I’m not used to this sort of thing.

Welcome to the New Germany, Hugh.

Are we safe?

As safe as anywhere.

It’s fine. I’ll order beers. We’ll drink them.

We’ll listen to the music and speak entirely in German.

[in German] Excuse me. Some beer? Two pale lagers.

You’re married?




What about you?


You’re turning grey.

And you still don’t need to shave.


Where’s Lena?

We don’t speak any more.

My pleasure. Cheers.

Hugh, we both, you and I, are the last hope of stopping Hitler.

Wh… [laughs]

They’re going to make a deal. Tomorrow or the day after.

I know. That’s the problem.


Make your deal, and Hitler becomes even more powerful.

We’re preventing a war.

No, you’re not. You’re not!

I know it’s awful for the Czechs to lose these territories, but if you invade tomorrow, tens of thousands of innocent people will die.

Yes. And if we don’t invade tomorrow, then soon maybe millions will die.


You have no idea who he is.

If you did, none of you would be here.

What do you want from me?

A meeting with Chamberlain.


Help me. Hugh. You’re his secretary. Secretaries arrange meetings.

But not secret meetings with you.

There has to be a way.

It’s impossible. And what do you want to tell him?


What do you want to tell him?

[in English] That Hitler is a terrible man?

[in German] Trust me, he knows.

[whispers] I can prove it.


Is that amusing to you?

I’d forgotten what you’re like.

You don’t want to help me.

I can’t. I can’t.

I can’t! Not with a private meeting.

Bu… [sighs]

But if you have information we should know about, I can try to arrange for the prime minister to see it.

Before he signs anything?


I can try.


Excuse me, sir.

If you’re done with the Stürmer, could I have it?

Of course.

[Paul] Yeah? And could I keep it as well?

Of course.

Are you sure?


Thank you very much.



[in English] Don’t look at it. Just put it under your arm, God damn it.

Right. Sorry.

You make a terrible spy, Hugh.


You should be at home with your wife.

It’s actually a relief to be away.

Let me guess. She finds you distant.

She says you don’t let her in.


That’s right.

Do something about that.

And finish your beer.

Will I see you again?

You know, if you ever needed to get out, you’d be well looked after in London.

I’ll never abandon Germany. Never.


[Hugh] Top secret.

Berlin, 10th November 1937.


The Führer began by explaining that the question is one of space.

[men singing in German]

The German race comprises over 85 million, and this constitutes a more tightly-packed racial community than any other country.

[girl speaking German]

The only remedy lies in the acquisition of living space.

And this will only be solved by means of force.

[in German] How’s your afternoon, Herr von Hartmann?

Arduous, Frau Winter. And yours?

Well, I’m hanging in there.

Did you meet with your English friend?

I did.


And we’ll see.

Did something happen?

Yes, you could say that.

We have an agreement.

An agreement for the immediate handover of the Sudetenland…

[in Italian] Congratulations, Schmidt. Excellent work.

Thank you.

[in German] …to the German Empire.

We’ll get everything we wanted.

I thought it would take at least another day.

Yes, it would have if Chamberlain had had his way.

He wanted to wear down the Führer with the smallest details.

The man is a bean counter.

Have they signed already?

What? The treaties are being drawn up right now. They’ll sign after dinner.

And straighten your tie.

The two of us have been invited to the dining room with the Führer.

Oh, God.

What, “Oh, God”? Von Hartmann.

Herr von Hartmann, that’s a great honour.


Quite right, Fräulein…

Frau Winter.

Frau Winter.

Anyway, the English and the French aren’t staying for dinner.

They’ve lost their appetite.

So we were asked to fill the ranks.

[man] Dr. Schmidt!

Well, looks like I’m needed again.

[in English] A narrow escape.

Thank you.

The Führer is vegetarian. Insists on meat not being served anywhere.

Does he?


When I was at lunch at the Chancellery with all the high command, they served Sellerieschnitzel.


[man laughs]

Musso will have enjoyed that.

Yes, wouldn’t he just?

And afterward, I’m telling you, I went to a butcher’s shop nearby.

Ordered two huge sausages.

Could be Wurst.

Yes. And I was just leaving the butcher’s shop, when who should be coming in but Hermann Göring, with a hungry look on his face?


He was as famished as I was.

Sir, I…

Yes, not now, Legat.

[in German] Don’t drink too much, von Hartmann. Just wet your lips.

We still have a lot of work ahead of us.

Tomorrow, the world will watch Munich and our translations.

Of course.

We can’t afford any mistakes.

…he has some skill. He’s not a bad negotiator.

[Henderson, in English] Prime Minister, tomorrow morning, millions of mothers will be blessing you for having saved their sons from the horror of war.


Prime Minister.

[Chamberlain] Too kind.

Can I have a word?

Not now.

It’s rather urgent.



You really should go and rest before the signing, Neville.

I think I will take forty winks.

I sent a sandwich up to your room.

Thanks so much, Horace.

Legat. Will you just give the man a moment to breathe?


He’s very tired.

He’s been up for 15 hours or more.

Yes, sir. Sorry.

Join us for supper.

All right.

[in German] Excuse me.

Von Hartmann?

Where are you going?


[silence falls]

Excuse me, my Führer. I’m needed for the translation of the agreement.

Come here.

I never forget a personal obligation.

For Germany, I am prepared to be dishonest a thousand times over.

For myself, never.

I’m no watch thief.


[loud laughter]

Thank you, my Führer.

[conversation resumes]

[knife taps on glass]

[Himmler] To the good health of our dear Italian friends.

And to the Führer.

[all] To the Führer.

[Wilson, in English] One of the Italian delegates was saying how good the kitchen is.

[Henderson] Yes, indeed, yes.

[Wilson] What do you recommend?

[Henderson] I recommend the Hachsen.

[Wilson] What is that?

[Henderson] It’s a pork knuckle. Very crispy.

Sir Horace!


Would you mind if I joined you in a moment?

Yes, of course.

[bell rings]

Have you read it?

It’s classified.

If they find…

Have you spoken to Chamberlain?

Have you spoken to Chamberlain?

Keep your voice down!

Thre’s no linen. No linen.

[Hugh] Not yet.

You know they’re about to sign?

It isn’t an easy thing to raise with him.



Then I’ll do it.

Oh, for God’s sake! Don’t be stupid.

This is the last moment. Do you understand?

I won’t have it on my conscience that I did nothing!

I feel the same. As soon as I can…

No, no.

I’ll talk to him.

Not soon, now!

Let’s do it together.


Why not? We are on the edge.

Do you have any idea…

We are right on the edge.


I’m sorry.

What’s happened to you?

We have to try, Hugh.

Please, we have to try.


This’ll be the end of my career.

Where’s the document?

In my room.

Come on.

[secretary] Is there another hotel nearby?

Downtown. I will call it. I will call.

Thank you, that would be great.

In the meantime, if we can get some linen so we can have a shower, that would be amazing.


He’s old, and he’s exhausted.

I’ll give him the document, and if he agrees to see you, for God’s sake, don’t give him a moral lecture.

Just the facts.

All right.

Wait here.

[door closes]

[taps on door]

Oh, sorry, Prime Minister.

No, no, no, no. Come on in, Legat. Just having my blood pressure checked.


Fortunately, it looks as if I’ll live another day.

Good night.

Good night, Joseph. Thank you.


So what is it that can’t wait? Hm?

We’ve come into possession of a significant document.

And who is “we”?

I have come into possession of a document.

What is it?

The minutes of a meeting that Hitler held with his senior commanders last November.


A meeting in which he explicitly commits himself to a war of conquest.

Obviously, it’s all in German, but I believe it to be legitimate and truthful.

And how did this document come to us?

A friend gave it to me in strict confidence.


A German diplomat.

Why does he wish us to have it?

I think he should explain that himself. He’s waiting outside.

Does Sir Horace know about this?

No, sir.

Nobody knows.

You’re exceeding your authority, young man.

[scoffs] I can’t possibly meet with a German diplomat.

I understand, but he is risking his life to see you.


This is… most improper.

I’m aware, sir.


Three minutes. Not a moment longer.

[door opens]

You’ve got three minutes.

This is Paul von Hartmann of the German Foreign Ministry.

How do you do?

Thank you for seeing me.

I’m not sure it’s very wise. For either of us.

Take a seat. Close the door, Legat.

Ah, ah.

You better come and join us, Legat. Come on.

So, get on with it.

That document is proof that Hitler is lying when he claims to have no further territorial demands.

On the contrary, he wants to expand the country, and he will keep on expanding.

Therefore, I beg you not to sign the agreement tonight.

[laughing] What?

Prime Minister.

Adolf Hitler is a monster.

He is a madman.

You cannot give him what he wants. He’ll take more and more land.

More and more people will suffer.

That is the proof.

I applaud your courage, young man.

But I have to give you a lesson in political reality.

The people of Great Britain will never take up arms over a local border dispute.

It’s so much more than a local border…

As for what Hitler may do or may not do in the future, well, we shall have to wait and see.

Wait and see is not…

My sole objective here is to avert war in the immediate term, so I can begin to build a lasting peace.

There will be no lasting peace.

But I have to try!

Look, the worst thing I could do is to walk away from this conference.

If you do, there are people waiting, high up in the military, a resistance, to bring him down.

Well, why haven’t they done so already?

They will if…

I can’t rely on some resistance you may believe exists in the German army.

I mean… [laughs]

Well, I… Think you should… Take this back to wherever it came from.


Keep it. Study it.

That is the political reality.

Now you’re being impertinent.

And you are shaking hands with a man who hates everything you stand for!

He is lying to you. He will go further and further.

He will not stop, sir. He will never sto…

Thank you for your time.

Please don’t sign the agreement.

Get rid of this.

I have to say, Legat,

I’m extremely disappointed in you.

[door closes]


Oui, bien sûr.

[in French] Mr. President of the Council.


Thank you for your cooperation.

I think we have come to a very good agreement.

Merci beaucoup. Monsieur.

[in English] Prime Minister.

[Chamberlain] Ah. Nice to see you.

Oh, Monsieur Daladier. Did you get some dinner?

[in German] There they are.

…the Czechs aren’t here, given the circumstances.

Um… Oh, there’s Monsieur Daladier. I want to…

[in French] Mr. Daladier, how was your dinner?

[in English] Sorry, we we both speaking.

[Chamberlain] Um, um… un sandwich?

Oh, c’est nécessaire.

[Daladier] Monsieur.

À tout à I’heure.

[man] It is very exciting…

[man] On va trouver quelque chose? Du vin?

[Chamberlain] Du vin? Une bonne idée!

[Franz] Psst, psst!

[in German] Are you looking for someone?

Yes, thank you. About the arrangements for the press?

Who’s responsible for that?

Enjoy the rest of your stay in Munich, Mr. Legat.

[in English] Oh bloody hell.

[in German] What did you want from him?

Can a British photographer be at the signing?

No chance.

Only the Führer’s personal photographer has permission to take pictures.

[in English] I’m sorry if I embarrassed you tonight.

I’m the one who should apologise.

What have you done with the document?

I will take it to London, find a more responsive audience.

It won’t be a waste.

[man, in German] Gentlemen!

We should stop talking.

Unser wunderbarer Führer  ist außerordentlich erfreut, Sie für diese festliche Unterzeichnung wieder in der Bibliothek begrüßen zu dürfen.

[Schmidt, in English] The Führer is pleased to invite you back to the library for the signing ceremony.

Prime Minister.

[Chamberlain] Good.

Duce, Monsieur Président du Conseil, Excellencies, gentlemen.

Please, this way.


[knocking at door]



Who’s there?

[Paul] Open the door.

I want to show you something.


It’s the only time we have.

Give me two minutes.

[engine idling]

[brakes squeal]

[men laughing and speaking German]

[gentle snoring]

[Paul] You can talk to her.

She won’t respond, but maybe she can hear.

[patients snoring and grunting]


[Lena whimpers]

[in German] It’s me, Hugh.

[Lena breathing]

[patients snoring]

[in English] What happened?

We split up.

After your trip to Munich.


How did she end up here?

She was arrested at a protest in ’35 and sent to Moringen, the women’s camp.

When they discovered she was Jewish…

They were rough.


They said she fell out of a window.

I’m sure she did.

But not before they carved a Star of David onto her back.

I knew he was racist.

All the awful Jewish stuff, I thought it could be put to one side.


But you can’t put it aside.

If they are capable of that, they are capable of anything.

Lena knew that.

Yes, she did.

May I?

Shall we share?

[Paul coughs]

What will you do?

Carry on.

In a few hours, I have to present a press summary to Hitler.

I’m told he’s taken a shine to me.


Maybe it’s a chance to really do something.

What do you…


It would solve everything.

They’d kill you for even thinking about it.

I have a pistol.

I might get a moment alone with him.

Stop it!

Don’t be stupid.

I’ll take the document to London. It will make a difference.

Probably more talking, yes.

Yes, more talking.

I have to fight.

You don’t have to fight!

We don’t choose the times we live in.

The only choice we have is how we respond.

You don’t have to fight, Paul! We don’t.

I have to fight.

We need to talk! We need to…

I… have to fight!

No, you don’t! No!

No! It’s my responsibility! Understand?

Your responsibility?

Or I may as well blow my brains out.

There are other ways of doing things! Talk, discussion…

There’s no other things, no.

There’s always hope!

[sighs] Hoping is waiting for someone else to do it.

We’d all be much better off without it.

[both sigh]


[women laughing and speaking German]

I’d miss you.






Bit early for a walk.


I… I couldn’t sleep. I had to clear my head.

Are you all right?

Why are you standing out here?

I’m looking for you.

The PM’s awake, and he wants to see you.

[taps on door]

I heard you were looking for me, sir.

Ah! Legat. Good morning.

Don’t suppose you brought that copy of The Times with…

With Hitler’s speech in it, did you?

Yes, sir. I put it in your box, sir.

Oh, good man. Can you find it for me?

Had a word with him last night.

Asked if I might see him again this morning before we fly back.

[Hugh] Asked who, sir?

Herr Hitler.

Did… did he agree?

[chuckles] Couldn’t really refuse.

Must say, that was a remarkably rude young man you brought to see me last night.

I really am sorry about that, sir.

Ah, thank you.

Have you told anyone about it?


Good. Neither have I.

His arguments were naïve, but… they were not ineffective.

Now, here we are.

Listen, I’d like you to take this to Wilson.

Ask him to turn it into a short statement of intent.

Just from there to there.

Sir, I don’t follow.

Well, on Monday night, Hitler publicly declared his desire for a permanent peace between Germany and Great Britain.


Well, I’d like his undertaking redrafted.

In the form of a joint statement.

A joint statement?

To which both he and I can put our names this morning.

Oh, get on with it. Go on. Get it done.

And get yourself a coffee. You’re half awake.

“We regard the agreement signed last night as symbolic of the desire of our two peoples never to go to war with one another again.”

I hope the PM realises this has no legal force whatsoever.

The man’s not a fool.

What the hell’s he playing at?

I’ve no idea. First I heard of it was half an hour ago.

Do you have it?

[Wilson] Yes.


It may be a little long.



What if he refuses to sign it?

[Chamberlain] Why should he?

These are all statements he’s made already.

[Wilson] It doesn’t mean he’s going to stick with them.

It’s symbolic, Horace.

Last night’s agreement only settles a tiny dispute.

There will be others.

And I want him to publicly commit himself to peace.

Oh, Legat, make sure there’s a car available at 11:00.

To the Führerbau?

No. Ah, you’ve put my name before his. It should be the other way around.

Otherwise, good.

Yes, I wanted to have a private meeting with him.

Man to man, no officials.

He invited me to his apartment.


No officials?

Not even you, Horace.

Oh, for God’s sake. You can’t go and see Hitler entirely on your own.

Can and will.

Gentlemen, we must rise to the level of events.


What? Hey!

[in German] What are you doing here?

I mean, what the hell are you doing here in Munich?

What are you doing here in Munich? What’s going on here?

What is going on here? Talk to me!

I don’t know…

Now, let’s talk. Come on. Talk to me!

[Hugh yells]

[Franz gasps]




I would suggest you go back where you came from.

Legat. [spits]






[Chamberlain] It was a specific point.

A bit of an embarrassment. Well, why was there…

[Wilson] With respect to… There just is. I can’t explain it any more.

Prime Minister?


I should accompany you to the meeting.


I thought I had made this perfectly clear. No officials.

Not as an official, sir. As a translator.

No, I want him to feel this is a personal meeting.

You need someone there to make sure your words are accurately reported.


Remember what happened at Berchtesgaden when he refused to give us a copy…

No, that…

You can’t trust Schmidt to have your back.

I think a translator could be useful.

I’m the only one who speaks German.

All right, all right, all right!


You can come, but be discreet.

Keep out of his eyeline. And mine.

[reporters clamouring]

Mr. Chamberlain!

Mr. Chamberlain!

Mr. Chamberlain!

[knock at door]

[man] Good morning, Prime Minister.

This way, sir.


[clears throat]

[officer] Your wardrobe.

[whispers] They have the document.

[Schmidt] Good morning.

[Chamberlain] Good morning.

[Schmidt] Did you sleep well?

[Chamberlain] Very well.

[Schmidt] I’m pleased to hear that, sir.



[Chamberlain] We, the German Führer and British Prime Minister, are agreed in respect of the future of Anglo-German relations.

We regard the agreement signed last night as symbolic of the desire of our two peoples never to go to war with one another again.

We are determined to continue to remove possible sources of difference and to contribute to the peace of Europe.

[Hitler] Herr Premierminister?

Ich möchte Ihnen ganz ausdrücklich danken.

[in English] Prime Minister, I would like to thank you explicitly.

Dr. Schmidt wird Sie zurück ins Hotel begleiten.

[Schmidt, in English] I will accompany you back to your hotel.

Thank you, Herr Hitler.

And may I add that there was never a doubt in my mind, sir, as to the lengths to which you would go to protect Germany.

Ich möchte dem hinzufügen, ich habe nie daran gezweifelt, zu was Sie alles bereit wären, um Deutschland zu schützen.

[officer, in German] The foreign press summary!

[in English] Thank you. Come along, Legat.

[teacup clinking]

[knocking at door]

[man, in German] The Reichsführer is arriving.

Please excuse me, my Führer.

[Hitler] “The cheers for Hitler were mechanical and polite.”

“For Chamberlain, they were ecstatic.”


You, as an educated German, what do you think? Are they right?

I do not wish to be followed mechanically!

I gave Germany back its dignity.

Is it too much to ask for a little gratitude?


They’re grateful to this arsehole Chamberlain!

Am I the only one who realises that we have a historic task ahead of us?

That this is the moment for Germany to fulfil its destiny?

Speak. I want you to answer me.

Why aren’t they grateful?

The people don’t want a war. They’re afraid.

The people don’t know what they want.

They’re children.

But you’re right. They are afraid.

I am surrounded by cowardice.

Yes, my Führer.

I told you, I can read people.

You say yes, but your eyes…

Are saying no.

It’s just you and I here.


What are you thinking, von Hartmann?

What do you…

Want to say to me?


[knock at door]

Heil, my Führer.

I’m told you’ve signed another agreement with Chamberlain?

Don’t take that so seriously. That piece of paper is of no significance.

The problem lies here, with the German people.

Anything else?

[clicks heels]

Thank you.




Thank you.

[in English] I hope you don’t mind. They asked me to share a ride to the airport.

I’m glad to have a moment alone with you.

I haven’t been altogether straight with you.


No. I’m actually something of a guardian angel.

What on earth are you talking about?

In London, you asked my surname.

It’s Menzies.

I think you know my uncle. He’s a colonel in the Foreign Office.

Well, he asked me to keep an eye on you out here.

Thank goodness I did.

I took it from your room last night when you went off with your friend.

I think other parties were trying to find it this morning?

[in German] I assume you’re waiting for me?

No, actually.


Not today, Paulie. Not today, but soon. Very soon.

Well, then.

My regards…

Get out.

[in English] Thank you.

Thank you, thank you.

Thank you, thank you, thank you.





[Wilson] Sir.

Sir, we’ll be on the ground in half an hour.

My God, I… fell asleep. Ooh.

Apparently, there’s quite a crowd.

The King has asked you to go direct to Buckingham Palace so their Majesties can thank you in person.

Oh, God.

I shall have to speak to the cameras.

The world doesn’t yet know about our joint statement.

Prime Minister, I urge you to treat the undertaking given by Hitler with the utmost caution.


The agreement on the Sudetenland is one thing, but this other document…

Yes, I know. Horace, look.

If there’s one thing I’ve learned from my dealings with Mr. Hitler, it’s that you can’t play poker with a gangster without any cards up your sleeve.

What if he breaks his word? You’ll look like a fool.

Well, if he breaks his word, the world will see him for who he truly is!

And it’ll unite the Allies. Might even bring the Americans on board.

And if I’m made to look a fool, well, it’s a small price to pay.

[Wilson sighs]

Horace, I can only play the game with the cards I’ve been dealt.


What do you think, Legat? Do you think this will change the game?

I think there’s a chance, Prime Minister.

So do I.

[cheering and applause]

[man] Whoo!

[Chamberlain] Thank you so much. How are you?

[Wilson] Look at that, Legat.

You’d think we won a war rather than avoided one.

There are thousands of people gathering on the Mall.

Welcome back, sir. Congratulations.

[Wilson] The King intends to take him out onto the balcony.

The settlement of the Czechoslovakian problem, which has been achieved…


…uh, is in my mind merely a prelude to a larger settlement, which, for all Europe, may bring peace.

[cheering and applause]

For this morning…

This morning I had another talk…

[thunder rumbling]

…with the German Chancellor Herr Hitler.

Here is the paper which bears his name upon it as well as mine.



[Pamela sighs]



Where’s Arthur?

[sniffles] He’s in the garden. He’ll be happy to see you.


I’m sorry for the way I left.

And, uh…

I wanted to say…

You were right.

I have felt disappointed.

And it’s my fault, not yours.

But there are some things I want to change.

[clock ticking]

I think I might resign from the service.

And do what?

When war comes, I need to be…




Don’t laugh, but I think I might join the RAF.


What about the treaty? I thought he just said that…

Just a delay. The PM’s given us a chance of winning the damn thing when it happens.

It’s quite some service when you think about it.

But it’s coming.

Sooner or later.

One day soon, we will have to fight. And we will have to win.

There must be something else that you can do.

It’s the…

More talks, negotiations…

There’s no other way.

Don’t say that.

There’s always hope.


And we’d all be much better off without it.


[Arthur] Daddy!

[Pamela laughs]

[Arthur giggles]

Here. Come here. Up a squeak.


Oh, I’ve missed you.

[in German] I could have shot Hitler.


I was so close to him, I could smell his breath.

I could feel the gun in my hand.


But my hand wouldn’t move.

Do you know why?


What would give me the right?

Do you want to keep going?

What other choice do we have?

They’ll hang you for that one day.

I know.

♪ Withering hours ♪

♪ The gentle days keeping us warm ♪

♪ In your arms, flowers ♪

♪ Turn to promises… ♪

[Lena, in English] I’ll take it.

♪ That linger until dawn ♪

♪ You dream of summer… ♪

Oh, you speak Russian as well, right?

♪ Of hearing bluebells chime ♪

♪ Your golden locks ♪

♪ Drenched in moonlight… ♪

[ball-goers cheering]

♪ Sitting in silence ♪

♪ As we watch the birds fly by ♪

♪ Come dance with me ♪

♪ Into the dark blue night ♪

[cheering and laughter]

♪ Come dance with me ♪

♪ Into the dark blue night ♪

♪ The nightingale cries ♪

♪ In the meadows ♪

♪ As the dew drops from my eyes ♪

♪ You dream of summer ♪

♪ Of hearing bluebells chime ♪

♪ Your golden locks ♪

♪ Drenched in moonlight ♪

♪ Sitting in silence ♪

♪ As we watch the birds fly by ♪

♪ Come dance with me ♪

♪ Into the dark blue night ♪

♪ Come dance with me ♪

♪ Into the dark blue night ♪

♪ And every year ♪

♪ The free birds fly ♪

♪ Into the distance ♪

♪ Under auburn skies ♪

♪ Fading to black ♪

♪ The forest sighs ♪

♪ Waiting for spring ♪

♪ To bring them back ♪

♪ And every year ♪

♪ The free birds fly ♪

♪ Into the distance ♪

♪ Under auburn skies ♪

♪ Fading to black ♪

♪ The forest sighs ♪

♪ Waiting for spring ♪

♪ To bring them back ♪

♪ You dream of summer ♪

♪ Of hearing bluebells chime ♪

♪ Your golden locks ♪

♪ Drenched in moonlight ♪

♪ Sitting in silence ♪

♪ As we watch the birds fly by ♪

♪ Come dance with me ♪

♪ Into the dark blue night ♪


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