Voice in the Wind (1944)
Preservation funding provided by The George Lucas Family Foundation.
Produced independently by Rudolph Monter, a Jewish refugee lawyer from Prague who became a minor film producer in Hollywood, and written by Friedrich Torberg, one of Austria's most famous writers, Voice in the Wind, like Casablanca, follows the fate of refugees from war-torn Europe. Francis Lederer plays a Czech concert pianist who was persecuted for playing a banned song, became a refugee, and was ultimately trapped on the fictional Caribbean island of Guadalupe, after almost being killed by human smugglers who promise safe passage to the United States. He pines after his wife, from whom he was separated in the chaos of the Nazi invasion of Prague, never realizing that she is withering away only miles away from him on another part of the island. He slowly descends into madness, no longer remembering his name, endlessly playing Smetana's "The Moldau," the unofficial anthem of Czech lands.