In this final installment of the "Why We Fight" propaganda series, the subject focuses on the United States of America. We learn of its good qualities and the things worth fighting for. With that established, we learn of the history of the United States' population shifting opinion towards siding with the Allies against the Axis until the attack on Pearl Harbour which brought America into full scale involvement in the war
Running Time: 70 Minutes
MPAA Ratings: Approved
The "Why We Fight" series is now 60 years old, but documentary film-making still doesn't come any better. I've got all 7 on DVD and although the sound quality is weak on a couple they remain the finest "propaganda" films I've ever seen. Apart from that, since being made they've now assumed another role as 'primary source' history. Wonderful snapshots on a vanished America. President Coolidge once said "The main business of the American people IS business" and i think that's why the series was made. While 'we' in Europe were squabbling and scheming and tearing ourselves apart the American people simply got on with their lives and built up a beautiful country, not to mention an economy that dwarfed the rest of the world. Most Americans had little knowledge of European affairs and we can't blame them for feeling a little p****d that just 20 years after they rescued us from a world war, we went and did it again! Of course, Hitler & the Nazis were very different to the German imperialism of WW1. They wanted the whole world and it WAS in America's interest to stop them. "War Comes To America" paints a portrait of Amrican history right from the beginning and gradually shows how all the achievements and work and struggle of the people have to be honoured by defeating this new and most terrible threat. The narrators (Walter Huston & Lloyd Nolan) both have wonderful voices and always seem to be talking directly to the viewer as an individual. A staggering amount of care went into the editing and selection of film and sound clips and it shows throughout. This is my favourite of the Why We Fight films and although the portrayal of America is sometimes a little "rose-tinted" (the Civil War is COMPLETELY left out) I found myself wishing I could've lived through that time. The comparison between the USA in the 30s and 40s and Britain today is quite striking. There's a tremendous optimism and energy and 'drive' in America that I simply don't see over here, then or now. I'm absolutely certain that if I'd watched this movie as a 19 year old GI back in the 40s I'd have left the cinema feeling 10 feet tall and ready to kick Hitler's ass! It really does show the sense of outrage of a free people attacked by barbarians, and the certainty that good will triumph over evil. In another of the series they show a clip from one of Winston Churchill's speeches that sums up the whole message of Why We Fight. Churchill's mother was American, so it's worth repeating again: "Every trace of Hitler's footsteps, every stain of his infected and corroding fingers, must be sponged and purged and if necessary BLASTED from the surface of the Earth. Lift up your hearts. All will come right." So. "War Comes To America" remains the finest documentary I've ever seen and it's a worthy end to an utterly outstanding series. As no film is 'perfect' I'll give it 9 out of 10 and I'd advise anyone to get hold of the entire series. You won't regret it. IMDB.com
Highly entertaining documentary from Frank Capra, which was the seventh of seven docs he did for WW2. This one here tracks the final events, which led America to join the war. With all the stock footage from back in the day, this here really is a must see. It's also interesting to see poll numbers throughout the late 30s to the early 40s on how Americans felt about entering a war.
Micheal Elliot, Luisville, KY
CAST & CREW
Written by General Packaging Description:
Julius J. Epstein
Philip G. Epstein
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