Two films concerning the July 20, 1944 plot to kill Adolph Hitler were released in Germany within the same week. The second to arrive on the scene was G. W. Pabst's Es Gescham am 20 Juli. Actor/director Bernhard Wicki heads the cast as Oberst Graf Von Staufenberg, the prime mover of the assassination conspiracy. The reasons for Von Staufenberg's actions are never fully articulated; the film is more concerned with the mechanics of the plot and the placing of the bomb. Though Hitler never appears in Es Gescham am 20 Juli, Joseph Goebbels does, by way of newsreel footage; cleverly, director Pabst allows Goebbels to betray himself as the jabbering lunatic and craven coward that he really was.
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