Kameradschaft 1931 Criterion Collection
In the Lorraine region on the French-German border, a gas explosion and series of tunnel collapses threatens the lives of French miners. A German rescue team, headed by Wittkopp, convinces the German mine director to allow them to conduct a rescue operation. In the meantime, a French miner descends an old stairway into the shaft in order to rescue his grandson on his own. The rescue mission ultimately becomes the expression of a common humanity that extends beyond national boundaries.

G. W. Pabst's Kameradschaft (1931) is based on an actual event: the 1906 Courrieres mining disaster in northern France, among the worst industrial accidents in history. A coal dust explosion resulted in 1,060 deaths and German miners from the Westphalia region came to France to assist in the rescue effort. Pabst and his scriptwriters relocated the event to the present day (that is, in the aftermath of World War I) and to the French-German border, transforming the story into a message of pacifism and solidarity among workers. In that respect, the film may be seen as a follow-up to Pabst's previous film, the anti-war picture Westfront 1918 (1930), which shares largely the same production team and even some of the cast members.

Director: Georg Wilhelm Pabst
Cast: Alexander Granach, Fritz Kampers, Ernst Busch, Elisabeth Wendt, Daniel Mendaille, Georges Charlia
Country: Germany, France
Genre: Drama

BD50 + DVD9 | 1080p AVC, NTSC | 01:30:05 | 38.3 Gb + 7.33 Gb + 3% rec
Language: Deutsch
Subtitles: English

• New interview with film scholar Hermann Barth on the film’s production (30:30)
• Interview from 1988 with editor Jean Oser, featuring footage from the French version of the film (12:38)
• Interview from 2016 with film scholar Jan-Christopher Horak on the historical context of the film (14:48)