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World on Fire/ Episode 2

With one major reservation I am hooked on this series, morphing from shall-I-watch-it to what-will-happen next?

There are four plot lines in Warsaw, Berlin England and Paris and my major reservation is that Warsaw’s is much the most gripping and the Paris one rather pedestrian.

The Warsaw section covers the oppression and occupation by the Wehrmacht with two searing scenes, one where an old Jew has his beard removed on his knees and another when the mother of Kasia, the wife of Harry who has now returned to England, is shot in front of her for insolence to a German officer.

The England section is carried by the truly horrendous mother of Harry played beautifully by Lesley Manville.

Kasia, instead of returning with Harry to safety, entrusts him with her kid brother. Manville’s face when he comes up her drive with the lad was a picture. The Paris section, a gay affaire between a jazz musician and doctor is hopeless, lacking in pace or any acting ability. In Berlin feisty American war correspondent Nancy Campbell continues to deliver her censored broadcasts. Ther is a chilling scene when she goes to the cinema with her neighbours. At the performance their young daughter has a fit but the parents dare not call a doctor as she will be reported to the Nazi eugenics department

About Bernadette Angell

After cutting her journalistic teeth in Boston USA, Bernadette met and married an Englishman, whom she followed back to London. Two decades and three children later, they divorced. She now occupies herself as a freelance writer (credits include television soaps and radio plays) and occasional amateur gardener. More Posts