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WWII: An Overview in Moving PicturesWWII: An Overview in Moving PicturesMany Voices, Many StoriesMany Voices, Many StoriesThe Home FrontThe Home FrontCritical PerspectivesCritical PerspectivesSee Everything, Hear Everything
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See Everything, Hear Everything
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Excerpt (4:23)
A War Story
1981, director: Anne Wheeler
When Singapore fell to Japan in February 1942, Churchill...
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Excerpt (3:18)
A War Story
1981, director: Anne Wheeler
About 140,000 Allied soldiers became Japanese prisoners of...
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Excerpt (2:13)
A War Story
1981, director: Anne Wheeler
Over 30,000 Allied soldiers died in Japanese prisoner-of-war...
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1
A War Story
Excerpt  (4:23) 1981, director: Anne Wheeler
Description The film
When Singapore fell to Japan in February 1942, Churchill called it "the worst disaster" in British history. About 80,000 Allied troops became Japanese prisoners of war. Detained in terrible conditions, many did not survive the war. The diary of Dr. Ben Wheeler, a Canadian who cared for fellow inmates, inspired this film, directed by his daughter Anne

More info on this film in NFB catalogue »»


"How little a list of casualties tells the real story of war." Based on the diaries of Canadian doctor Ben Wheeler during his internment in a Japanese prisoner-of-war camp during World War II, this feature docudrama is not a "war story" in the conventional sense of strategy and battles, but rather a glowing account of the spirit and its will to survive physical and mental suffering. Newsreel footage of the fall of Singapore (where Major Wheeler was captured) has been interwoven with dramatic reconstructions of scenes inside the mining camp and interviews with survivors.