Uncertain Glory

  • 1944
  • Movie
  • NR
  • Drama, War

In Occupied Paris during WW II, Flynn is a thief and murderer about to be guillotined. He rejects the priest saying prayers for his soul and refuses to let the prison barber shave his neck. He is about to lose his head when British planes raid Paris, and the falling bombs hit the prison and give Flynn a chance to escape. He flees toward Spain, with his...read more

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In Occupied Paris during WW II, Flynn is a thief and murderer about to be guillotined. He rejects the priest saying prayers for his soul and refuses to let the prison barber shave his neck. He is about to lose his head when British planes raid Paris, and the falling bombs hit the prison

and give Flynn a chance to escape. He flees toward Spain, with his old nemesis, Surete inspector Lukas, in hot pursuit. Eventually Lukas recaptures Flynn and the two are on a train returning to Paris when saboteurs blow up the bridge ahead of them. The two are forced to spend some time in a small

village, where Flynn charms local girl Sullivan. The Nazis, searching for the saboteurs, take 100 hostages and threaten to kill them if the culprits do not step forth. Flynn makes a proposition to Lukas. Since he is going to die one way or another, he will confess to the sabotage and die in front

of a German firing squad rather than have his head chopped off, a fate of which he has a mortal fear. Flynn is actually simply stalling while he figures a way to escape again, but when he learns that Sullivan is among the hostages, he goes through with his self-sacrifice. Although UNCERTAIN GLORY

is hardly one of Flynn's best films, the first half of it is fascinating as it develops Flynn's character, much of it at the actor's own suggestion. As originally written, the script called for Flynn to go to the guillotine sullen and resigned, but Flynn turned his character angry and resentful,

and Lukas, as the man determined to see justice done, is equally intriguing. But whatever power the first half of the film has is dissipated in the second half, as this cynical criminal suddenly turns noble and sacrifices himself for a young girl. Director Walsh showed little more than cursory

interest in the film and in his autobiography writes it off along with two others he made that year as "quickies."

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  • Rating: NR
  • Review: In Occupied Paris during WW II, Flynn is a thief and murderer about to be guillotined. He rejects the priest saying prayers for his soul and refuses to let the prison barber shave his neck. He is about to lose his head when British planes raid Paris, and t… (more)

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