This filmed record of the Spanish Civil War is remarkable in its willingness to offer both sides of the conflict -- though its sympathies are firmly with the Loyalists. The first half of the film, subtitled "The Flight for Freedom," was filmed by representatives of the Spanish government and narrated by Spanish ambassador Fernando de Los Rios. The second half, subtitled "They Shall Not Pass," was lensed by staffers of the Soviet Artkino Film Company. The pro-Red stance in this section is eminently understandable, given the not-so-surreptitious involvement of Hitler and Mussolini in the Spanish conflict. The horrendous images of battlefield carnage, not to mention the close-ups of suffering and dying Spanish children, still pack a wallop when seen today.
by Hal Erickson synopsis