Labiche and his fellow railway men unleash a torrent of devastation but must use skill and deception to protect the train's prized cargo.The story was inspired by an actual art looting and France's successful delay of the German train until the Allies arrived.
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The Spitfire attack on the daytime light engine return to Rive-Reine (filmed using a Spitfire Mark V) was shot just south of the Chteau de Robert-le-Diable, near Moulineaux, where the tunnel and viaduct are still used today in freight service.
Labiche (Burt Lancaster), a railway inspector and member of the Resistance, is at first more concerned with weapons than art.
But when a friend is murdered trying to sabotage the colonel's scheme, Labiche vows to stop the art train at any cost.