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Projecting the Archive

The Lost People (aka Cockpit)

+ intro by BFI Curator Josephine Botting

A timely reminder of tensions between nationalities in the late 40s, this film is about displaced Europeans in Germany awaiting rescue.

Image from The Lost People (aka Cockpit) + intro by BFI Curator Josephine Botting

UK 1949
Dirs Bernard Knowles, Muriel Box
With Dennis Price, Richard Attenborough, Mai Zetterling
89min
35mm
Certificate PG

This film is a timely reminder of the tensions between nationalities in the late 1940s when the unifying force of the battle against Hitler was receding, and old rivalries began to resurface. Based on the play Cockpit by Irish writer Bridget Boland, The Lost People focuses on a group of displaced persons from all over Europe who gather in an abandoned theatre in Germany, from where the British army attempts to return them home. With a screenplay by Boland and Muriel Box and an all-star British cast, this film is a fascinating window onto the European post-war landscape, and suggests that, even 70 years after its release, the political situation in Europe has changed little.


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