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Two Thousand Women

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Title: Two Thousand Women  
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Subject: Flora Robson, Thora Hird, 1944 in film, Gainsborough Pictures, Sidney Gilliat, Phyllis Calvert, Women in prison film, Frank Launder, Dulcie Gray, Jean Kent
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Two Thousand Women

Two Thousand Women
File:Two Thousand Women VideoCover.png
Directed by Frank Launder
Produced by Edward Black
Starring Phyllis Calvert
Flora Robson
Patricia Roc
Music by Hans May
Distributed by Gainsborough Studios
Release date(s) 6 November 1944 (UK)
October 1951 (U.S.)
Running time UK: 97 min.
US: 81 min.
Country United Kingdom
Language English

Two Thousand Women is a 1944 British comedy-drama war film about a camp of interned British women in Occupied France. Three RAF aircrewmen whose bomber had been shot down enter the camp and are hidden by the women from the Germans. It was released in the USA in 1951 in a severely cut-down version under the title of House of 1,000 Women.

Plot

An English novice nun (Patricia Roc) is arrested by the French as a fifth columnist during the 1940 Battle of France. While she is imprisoned the Germans occupy France and she is sent (without her habit) to an internment camp in a grand hotel at a spa. She journeys to the camp with Freda (a journalist played by Phyllis Calvert), Bridie (a stripper played by Jean Kent), Muriel (Flora Robson) and her female companion Miss Meredith (Muriel Aked). At the camp they meet Maud (Renee Houston) and Mrs Burtshaw (Thora Hird).

The women soon settle into a routine that seems to consist of cleaning the corridors and playing cards.

However, during an air raid an RAF bomber is shot down and two RAF (James McKechnie and Reginald Purdell) and one RCAF (Robert Arden) aircrewmen escape the Germans by entering the hotel. The women hide the airmen and devise a plan for the men to escape during a concert. In the meantime, one of the internees is revealed to be a Nazi spy.

Cast

  • Phyllis Calvert as Freda Thompson
  • Flora Robson as Muriel Manningford
  • Patricia Roc as Rosemary Brown / Mary Maugham
  • Renée Houston as Maud Wright
  • Reginald Purdell as Alec Harvey
  • Anne Crawford as Margaret Long
  • Jean Kent as Bridie Johnson
  • James McKechnie as Jimmy Moore
  • Robert Arden as Dave Kennedy (as Rob Arden)
  • Carl Jaffe as Sergeant Hentzner
  • Muriel Aked as Clairen Meredith
  • Kathleen Boutall as Mrs. Hadfield
  • Hilda Campbell-Russell as Mrs. Cornelia Hope Latimer
  • Christiana Forbes as Frau Holweg
  • Thora Hird as Mrs. Burtshaw
  • Dulcie Gray as Nellie Skinner
  • Joan Ingram as Mrs. Tatmarsh
  • Betty Jardine as Teresa King
  • Christiane De Maurin as Annette
  • Guy Le Feuvre as Monsieur Boper (as Guy Lefeuvre)
  • Paul Sheridan as French Officer

Production

Frank Launder stated later that he "should have treated the subject more seriously...that it would have been a bigger film if I concentrated less on the comedy and more on the drama".[1]

American release

Perhaps due to the success of Three Came Home, the film was released in the USA in 1951 in a severely cut-down version under the title of House of 1,000 Women. The American version of the film available on DVD ignores Patricia Roc's adventures as well as several subplots[2] and starts the film with the transport to the internment hotel.

References

External links

  • Internet Movie Database
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