In the 1930s, all of Europe was barricading itself away behind fortresses, walls and defence lines. The whole world was amazed by two superstructures of the time: the French Maginot Line, and the German Siegfried Line, which were respectively 700 and 630 kilometres in length.
But what event brought Europe to prepare for warfare yet again only ten years after the First World War? How did the idea of fortifications gain a foothold in France and Nazi Germany at a time when battles were fought with fighter planes and tanks? And how did the Maginot and Siegfried Lines withstand the ordeal of these battles?
These two fortresses were a result of two very different and diametrically opposed tactical, ideological, and military approaches. As of 1940, the world watched on, holding its breath, as the fortresses’ limits were sorely put to the test. By means of archive images and interviews with experts, take a behind-the-scenes look at these defence lines and discover one of the Second World War’s forgotten stories, that of the last war of the fortifications.
Direction: Barbara Necek
Production: ZED for RMC Découverte
Available versions: French, English
- Festival International du Film d'Histoire de Pessac
- Selected in the "defense day" of the festival