The Train (1965)
French aluminum franc coins used to sabotage railroads
The 1965 United Artists film "The Train" shows an aluminum French franc coin used to sabotage a train.
and is set in 1944 France near the end of the German occupation.
German Colonel Franz von Waldheim is in charge of a Paris art museum.
He is ordered to move the paintings, mostly impressionist art by artists such as Picasso and Renoir,
to Germany so that they can be sold to raise money for the war effort.
He has the paintings put on a special train.
2. Stealing the art
French art curator M. Villard contacts a French railways resistance group and asks them
to halt or slow down the train so that the approaching Allies can save it.
3. Labiche, French railway official
Paul Labiche is a railway supervisor, along with others, begins misdirecting and sabotaging
the train to slow it down. The Germans, especially von Waldheim, learn about this, and use
Nazi methods including executions to stop the sabotage.
4. Engineer Papa Boule oiling the engine
He buys some coffee and gets change in coins.
5. French francs on table
6. Sabotaging the engine
He uses a simple device to slow down the train.
7. The sabotage device, a French franc
The coin appears to be an aluminum Vichy French franc dated 1943.
A Vichy French franc coin:
8. A 1943 Aluminum Vichy French Franc
The Germans are suspicious and ask Boule to turn out his pockets, revealing an oily franc coin.
9. Searching the pockets
10. An oily franc indicates guilt
Later, a fake sign is used to hide the redirection of the train.
11. Fake sign
Train wrecks also slow down the train.
12. Train wreck
This is a real train wreck with real engines, not minatures.
13. Labiche and Christine
After the latest attack, the train can no longer be made to run.
with an army truck convoy.
14. The Colonel says goodbye
Labiche is finally left alone to stop the train, and he wants revenge.
Von Waldheim and Labiche have a final confrontation.
Burt Lancaster as Paul Labiche
Paul Scofield as Colonel Franz von Waldheim
Jeanne Moreau as Christine
Suzanne Flon as Mlle Villard
Michel Simon as Papa Boule
Writers: Franklin Coen, Frank Davis