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The outbreak of war: Father is arrested again
Walter Lassally Film-maker
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And then, of course, the war broke out and my mother was very upset she said... she said, 'The war is,' I remember her saying this, she said, 'War is one of the most... it's the most terrible thing that can happen to a country'. Yes, she was very, very upset.

There were no immediate effects, the day after war broke out wasn't any different to the day before war broke out, because it took some time for the air raids to begin, and all that. There was a, sort of a, like a busman's holiday, you know, there was an interval where nothing much happened. But my father was... eventually they started arresting all the aliens, as they were called. And my father was taken off to another camp, but it was rather better than Sachsenhausen. He was taken off to the Isle of Man, just in time to miss the Blitz. So, my mother and I spent every night in the shelter in the Blitz, and he was sitting, very comfortably, in the Isle of Man. And, eventually they had these tribunals and he was released, because when he was given a clean bill of health, as it were, that he wasn't a spy, then they released him and we all got together again, and lived in Richmond, happily ever after, sort of.

Born in Germany, cinematographer Walter Lassally (1926-2017) was best known for his Oscar-winning work on 'Zorba the Greek'. He was greatly respected in the film industry for his ability to take the best of his work in one area and apply it to another, from mainstream to international art films to documentary. He was associated with the Free Cinema movement in the 1950s, and the British New Wave in the early 1960s. In 1987 he published his autobiography called 'Itinerant Cameraman'.

Listeners: Peter Bowen

Peter Bowen is a Canadian who came to Europe to study and never got round to heading back home. He did his undergraduate work at Carleton University (in Biology) in Ottawa, and then did graduate work at the University of Western Ontario (in Zoology). After completing his doctorate at Oxford (in the Department of Zoology), followed with a year of postdoc at the University of London, he moved to the University's newly-established Audio-Visual Centre (under the direction of Michael Clarke) where he spent four years in production (of primarily science programs) and began to teach film. In 1974 Bowden became Director of the new Audio-Visual Centre at the University of Warwick, which was then in the process of introducing film studies into the curriculum and where his interest in the academic study of film was promoted and encouraged by scholars such as Victor Perkins, Robin Wood, and Richard Dyer. In 1983, his partner and he moved to Greece, and the following year he began to teach for the University of Maryland (European Division), for which he has taught (and continues to teach) biology and film courses in Crete, Bosnia, and the Middle East.

Tags: Isle of Man, Sachsenhausen

Duration: 1 minute, 26 seconds

Date story recorded: June 2004

Date story went live: 24 January 2008