Skip to comments.Hollywood: Swastika and Sickle
Posted on 08/13/2013 10:11:56 AM PDT by Academiadotorg
This Fall, Harvard University Press will release The Collaboration: Hollywoods Pact With Hitler, by the 35-year-old historian Ben Urwand. Alexander Kafka previewed the book in The Chronicle Review.
Urwand found that Nazi officials considered some American films ideologically usefulamong them Gabriel Over the White House (1933), The Lives of a Bengal Lancer (1935), Our Daily Bread (1934), and Mutiny on the Bounty (1935)and that the studios expressly marketed certain titles in that vein, Kafka writes. For instance, Gabriel Over the White House, an American fascist fantasia about a fed-up, divinely inspired president dissolving a chaotic Congress and whipping the United States into totalitarian shape, was touted by Frits Strengholt, an MGM executive in Germany, as resonating with Nazi work-mobilization, anticrime, and other efforts.
True, the 1934 picture was outperformed in Germany by Greta Garbo in Queen Christina, Claudette Colbert in Cleopatra, and Marlene Dietrich in The Scarlet Empress. But when the Prussian justice minister, the president of the German Film Chamber, and several higher-ups in the Foreign Office attend a special screening, and when Nazi critics applaud a movie for its appreciation of the leader principle, clearly there are factors involved beyond box-office sizzle.
Gabriel was a commercial success in America. Ironically, Gabriel Over the White House turned out to be one of the biggest box office hits of 1933..., Jeff Stafford wrote on the Turner Classic Movies web site. And, arguably, the afficianadoes of the flick in the Nazi government were nowhere near as enthusiastic about it as our own commander-in-chiefFDR.
Stafford notes that the star of the film, Walter Huston (grandfather of Angelica) was always partial to Gabriel Over the White House since it ended up securing him an invitation to the White House for drinks with President Roosevelt, who was a big fan of the film.
(Excerpt) Read more at academia.org ...
National SOCIALISM was fully Socialist. The Government of Germany directed everything even before the Nazis took over.
Friederich Hayek points out that the Planning function of Socialists of the Nazi or Communist stripes had to have societies of similar types: Where the government controls the individual.
It really doesn’t matter the genesis of the central planning function: For the proletariat or the Volk. The result is always the same: Dictatorship, misallocation of resources, starvation, war, suppression of the individual.
It’s for the greater good, doncha know.
Hollywood just falls into thrall of the latest Smart Planners.
Time magazine named him "Man of the Year." Margaret Sanger thought his views on removing "human weeds" from the gene pool were very progressive.
Catch a few of the Stalin-loving propaganda movies out of Hollywood during the war. They make me barf. The one in this story, “Angels Over The White House”, seemed like an ode to Uncle Joe to me. Anybody who opposed Roosevelt was depicted as a wrecker or a kulak.
The NAZI’s were socialists, just a different flavor
Claudette Colbert in Cleopatra --YUM!
Although it was critically acclaimed, won awards, and even made into a radio play, Johnny Got His Gun was pulled off the market after the Germany invaded the Soviet Union and the Communist Party line switched overnight from advocating pacifism to promoting all-out intervention in the war. In an introduction to a 1959 edition of the novel, Trumbo admitted that after the book was taken off the market, he even turned over to the FBI the names of those requesting copies. Pre-1941 editions of the book are now collector's items.
With the onset of the Cold War, the party line changed, and the book once again began showing up in bookstores.
Roosevelt saw an advance screening[ of Gabriel Over the White House] , writing, I want to send you this line to tell you how pleased I am with the changes you made in Gabriel Over the White House. I think it is an intensely interesting picture and should do much to help.
I can’t figure out why “Mutiny on the Bounty” would be popular with Nazis. I would view the Capt. as a model of Hitler.
Could be Hitler had a gay crush on Franchot Tone.
The article mentions Gabriel Over the White House (1933). I saw it a few years ago on TCM. Very strange and interesting film.
"If we are to go forward we must move as a trained and loyal army willing to sacrifice for the good of a common discipline, because, without such discipline, no progress is made, no leadership becomes effective. We are, I know, ready and willing to submit our lives and property to such discipline because it makes possible a leadership which aims at a larger good." - not Adolf Hitler
I’ve never heard of any of these films, so it’s odd to think they had such influence, but now I guess I’ll have to have a look for the sake of historical understanding. Interesting.
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