Tuesday, March 28, 2017
Hitler's Madman is a 1943 World War II film about the assassination of Nazi Reinhard Heydrich and the Lidice massacre revenge taken by the Germans.
The shooting of Hitler's Madman took place late in 1942 and early 1943. Sirk hired German cinematographer Eugen Schüfftan to shoot the film, but since he was not allowed in the United States at the time, the credit was instead given to Jack Greenhalgh.
It is a somewhat fictionalized account of the destruction of the village of Lidice in Czechoslovakia and the events leading up to it. In 1942, the Allies parachuted a Czech resistance fighter into the area. He quickly reunites with his former girlfriend and many of the villagers who knew him from before the war. The Nazis are evil and under the command of Reinhardt Heydrich rule the country with an iron fist, arbitrarily arresting innocents and charging them with fictitious crimes.
When Heydrich is severely wounded in a roadside attack - he dies three days later - Henrich Himmler orders the destruction of Lidice. The men are herded into a church which is set aflame and the women are sent to concentration camps. The town itself is leveled.