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The Pacific War: A Trilogy - Saipan

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Award-winning director Serge Viallet uses never-before-seen archival film from the Second World War as well as interviews to understand the tragedy that took place on one of the Mariana Islands when 70,000 American soldiers landed there in June 1944.

The island of Saipan had an important Japanese military base and a civilian population of several thousand. In a state of panic, soldiers and civilians fled toward the north of the island. Terrified by the Yankee enemy they had seen in anti-American propaganda, or perhaps motivated by a moral code that forbids surrender, thousands of Japanese committed suicide.

This series sheds light on three tragic episodes of the war in the Pacific that are often overlooked in the history books. During several years of research, the director recorded the memories of both Western and Asian eyewitnesses, while uncovering never-before-seen archival footage.

1993, 51 min 11 s