During WWII, the Nazis have stolen many priceless works of art, planning to destroy those they deem against their sensibilities. German Colonel Franz von Waldheim, however, is an art aficionado and as such, against the wants of the Germans in general, decides in August 1944, days before it looks like France will be liberated, to bring back to Germany many of those priceless works of art from the Jeu de Paume in Paris. von Waldheim will go to any length to achieve this largely personal mission, which he plans to accomplish by transporting the art packed in crates via rail. Mlle. Villard, the curator of the gallery, asks the Resistance to stop von Waldheim. Paul Labiche, a railway inspector and one of the leaders of the Resistance, initially does not want to assist Mlle. Villard, seeing the lives of the Resistance members and the larger goals of French freedom as more important. But based on incidents, Labiche changes his mind and assists in the mission, he who ends up having an up close and personal vantage point. Labiche's elaborate plan has many obstacles to overcome to achieve success, including von Waldheim's own success at any cost mentality.