Skip to comments.“Mission to Moscow,” “Presenting Lily Mars,” “Good Morning, Judge” (Movie Reviews-4/30/43)
Posted on 04/30/2013 4:19:27 AM PDT by Homer_J_Simpson
For all its sweetness, Presenting Lily Mars is uninviting fare; it is glorified monotony. Perhaps M-G-M should let Miss Garland grow up and stay that way.
That is putting it kindly. Homer and Mrs. Homer would go farther and say that if it wasnt for Miss Garlands contribution the movie would be unwatchable. Mrs. Homer correctly observed that the basic story is the same one that will be used in Easter Parade some years in the future. So it is not the story but how it is told that determines the quality of the production. Judy does grow up for a moment at the end of Lily Mars. In the final musical number they have her dressed and coifed so that she looks just like a very youthful version of the star as she appeared much later in her career.
“Mission to Moscow.” Isn’t that the film that Ayn Rand criticized before the HUAC? Called it communist propaganda.
“Mission to Moscow”: Russian leader realized the Nazi threat before any Western leaders did....
Was that before or after Stalin signed the non-aggression pact with Hitler?
The way I heard it, Stalin was utterly flabbergasted by the Nazi attack on Russia, even killed a messenger (someone who warned him it was on the way).
“Mission” was undoubtedly after the non-aggression pact, Hollywood just doing its part to cast Russia in a positive light when Russia was fighting Hitler’s Germany.
Should’ve read the clipping before I posted. 1943. Yes, not only was it after the non-aggression pact, it was after the German invasion of Russia and after it proved to be a colossal mistake.
Churchill realized what Hitler was before anyone else did, but Stalin was a close second. It was because he realized that Hitler was a madman bent on war that he signed the Non-Aggression Pact with Germany.
The western allies thought Hitler’s aggression could be deterred by making a 3-way alliance that included the USSR. But their diplomatic overtures to Stalin were clumsy at best, and more like farcical. Stalin quickly realized that the western allied strategy to defeat Hitler involved the expenditure of copious amounts of Russian blood, while the allies would sit it out safely behind the Maginot Line. Stalin wanted none of that. In addition, he knew full well that his army would not be ready for war until 1942 or 1943, since he had tripled its size while simultaneously decapitating it by killing off most of the officers. In addition, Stalin gambled that Hitler and the western alliance would bleed each other to exhaustion in a war like World War 1, and allow him to “clean up” in Europe at little cost. Not a bad perception of reality, and a very good strategy in the circumstances.
But reality bites; France folded like a house of cards and Stalin wound up with an angry Hitler at the height of his power, standing on his door step a year before he was ready. Stalin’s reaction was not at all in keeping with his character; he went into denial. It seemed that Joseph Stalin, the man who trusted nobody, wound up trusting the one man nobody should have trusted in Adolph Hitler. So he refused to hear the warnings that the attack was imminent, while attempting a crash effort to get his army ready.
The man who was killed for telling Stalin the truth was Ivan Proskurov, an air force general who was head of Soviet military intelligence. He was outspoken about a great many things, the German preparations for invasion only being one of them. Another was done in a general staff meeting when he told Stalin that the reason for the high incidence of training accidents was the “flying coffins” that were being provided by Soviet industry to the air force. Stalin told him “that was a mistake.” Proskurov was “purged” with extreme prejudice.
The irony of all of this is that Stalin’s strategy guaranteed the one outcome he attempted to avoid. Hitler was defeated at the cost of copious amounts of Russian blood and the destruction of much of what Stalin had built during his five year plans. But Stalin wound up with half a loaf after all; he didn’t clean up in Europe, but he did wind up with the eastern half.
A very good book on this is David Murphy’s “What Stalin Knew.”
And as for Judy Garland’s film, looking like an adult at the end of it; was she popping pills like an adult then, too?
Yep. MGM was providing her with amphetamines for weight control and sleeping pills to counter-act the uppers for years. She will turn 21 on June 22, 1943, so it seems her child-star years are being artificially prolonged.
Mission To Moscow is literally repellent - I’ve never been able to sit all the way through it. Davies was a vile character.
“If Hitler invaded hell I would make at least a favorable reference to the devil in the House of Commons.” Winston Churchill
I believe “Valley of the Dolls” was intended as a portrayal of Judy Garland’s life. Rumor also has it that she “got around” Hollywood...if you know what I mean.
If you think “Mission to Moscow” was repellent, you ain’t seen nothin’ yet until you’ve seen “Days of Glory,” due to be released in 1944. It’s Gregory Peck’s film debut, and it is pure unadultered Soviet propaganda. Sergei Eisentein couldn’t have made a better, or worse, propaganda film. Acutally, Eisenstein’s movies had some value to them, especially if he had Prokofiev write the music score as in “Alexander Nevsky.” “Days of Glory” was very heavy-handed and crude, especially at the end when Gregory Peck and the lead female operate an anti-tank rifle and she takes the oath to the Communist Party while a German panzer is about to roll over them. Ugh.....
Here’s the IMDB info in case you are interested:
I was a Poli Sci major at Indiana University along with my best friend and hunting buddy. We got drunk one night (of many) and watched “Days of Glory. “ We laughed our asses off at how crude it was. But drunk off your ass was the only way you could watch it.