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High Treason

Entry updated 19 January 2017. Tagged: Film.

Film (1929). Gaumont. Directed by Maurice Elvey. Written by L'Estrange Fawcett, based on a play by Noel Pemberton-Billing. Cast includes James Carew, Basil Gill, Benita Hume and Jameson Thomas. 95 minutes, cut to 69 minutes. Black and white.

This forgotten curiosity, one of the earliest UK sound movies, was quite a big film in its day, when it was seen as a kind of English Metropolis (1926) – a comparison that does not for an instant hold water. Set in the world of 1940 (a Channel tunnel, television, aeroplanes landing on London skyscrapers), it envisages a tense political situation between United Europe, to which England belongs, and a United America. The Peace League saves the world from war by assassinating the leader of United Europe. The production design is singularly unstriking and the story absurd. [PN]


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