Hangmen Also Die

Critics Consensus

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85%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 13

68%

Audience Score

User Ratings: 400

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Movie Info

During the Nazi occupation of Czechoslovokia, insurgent Franticek Svoboda (Brian Donlevy) assassinates the brutal German leader Reinhard Heydrich (Hans Heinrich von Twardowski). Svoboda escapes with the aid of history professor Stephen Novotny (Walter Brennan), but Novotny is then captured, along with 400 other Czechs, through the machinations of Nazi sympathizer Emil Czaka (Gene Lockhart). The Czech prisoners are then told that if Svoboda does not surrender, they will all be executed.

Cast & Crew

Brian Donlevy
Dr. Franticek Svoboda, Karel Vanek
Walter Brennan
Prof. Stephen Novotny
Anna Lee
Nasha Novotny
Dennis O'Keefe
Jan Horak
Alexander Granach
Gestapo Insp. Alois Gruber
Margaret Wycherly
Ludmilla Novotny
Nana Bryant
Mrs. Hellie Novotny
William Roy
Boda Novotny
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Critic Reviews for Hangmen Also Die

All Critics (13) | Top Critics (5) | Fresh (11) | Rotten (2)

  • Although Director Fritz Lang gives this familiar material occasional touches of distinction, the picture still misses Grade A rank.

    February 25, 2013 | Full Review…
    TIME Magazine
    Top Critic
  • From a directorial standpoint this is a triumph for Fritz Lang, who succeeds with singular success in capturing the spirit of the Czech people in the face of the Nazi reign of terror.

    February 25, 2013 | Full Review…

    Variety Staff

    Variety
    Top Critic
  • For all of Mr. Lang's finesse, his film is too patient -- it runs well over two hours -- too ponderous to hit its stride as melodrama. Nor does it match in emotional power and conviction its heroic theme.

    February 25, 2013 | Rating: 2.5/5 | Full Review…
  • The two-and-a-quarter-hour film has the iconic thrust of a silent; the pro-sacrifice resistance cant has an oddly jihadist tenor today.

    February 25, 2013 | Full Review…
  • Superb performances throughout, while James Wong Howe's photography perfectly captures the spirit of the occupied city, where hiding places are few and far from safe.

    February 9, 2006 | Full Review…

    Geoff Andrew

    Time Out
    Top Critic
  • The title makes you expect the usual raw melodrama. Actually, you see a vivid, engrossing film, with brilliant direction by Fritz Lang, and some extraordinarily fine character acting.

    April 2, 2019 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Hangmen Also Die

  • Apr 15, 2013
    I find that Fritz Lang's films are often hit-or-miss, but even when they miss, they're still usually interesting failures. "Hangmen Also Die!" isn't a failure at all, but it is too long and not as tensely directed as it should have been. What could have been a riveting thriller about the Czechs getting their revenge against the Nazis ends up being kind of exciting but nonetheless forgettable. Side note: it was co-written by noted German playwright Bertolt Brecht, who seldom wrote screenplays.
    Stephen E Super Reviewer

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