In 1939, American Tom Martin, who fought in the Spanish Civil War, awaits execution at the hands of the Fascist victors when reporter Augusta 'Gusto' Nash, for a scoop, aids him in an audacious escape. Of course, Tom tries to romance Gusto; but though she likes him, her career comes first, and Tom himself prefers freedom-fighting to settling down. Comedy becomes drama as their mixed feelings lead them on a circuitous path through the deepening chaos and catastrophe of the early days of World War II. Written by
Rod Crawford <firstname.lastname@example.org>
One of over 700 Paramount productions, filmed between 1929 and 1949, which were sold to MCA/Universal in 1958 for television distribution, and have been owned and controlled by Universal ever since. See more »
In the final analysis, a film is about cinematography. From the very beginning at the Spanish prison, extraordinary cinematography is used to an exceptional degree, and it continues through the film. There are minor exceptions, as with the file film of airplanes flying. More importantly, the film claims the obvious: The Spanish government in 1939 had more than casual leanings toward Berlin. The bombing of Guernica by the Nazi air force is testimony, here reinforced. Tom Martin (Ray Millard) says he had a pet rat in his jail cell named "Adolph." Spain's neutrality during World War Two is in question with Paramount Pictures, as it was in diplomatic circles. Of course, a 1940 movie about event of 1939 has the advantage of historical retrospect, yet the public actions of the Spanish government stand. Claudette Colbert as Agusta Nash is the career woman whose career comes before love, who puts her career before all. Her assignment as Special Berlin Correspondent is to tell of Hitler and his gang. A series of unpredictable events leads her to redefine her sense of patriotism. There are, in effect, many loves which must arise and spite the envious moon. Cinematography, historical theme, and some darn good acting all unite for an effective historical perspective on life at the beginnings of World War Two.
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