This propaganda piece starts in 1933. Prof. Nichols' American school in Berlin is next door to a school for the Hitler Youth. Karl, from the latter, is attracted to German-American Anna, but events lead to their separation. Six years later, near the outbreak of war in Europe, Anna is removed from Nichols' school on presumption of German citizenship. Nichols becomes obsessed with finding her, as Anna undergoes a rather lurid odyssey through the Nazi nightmare. Written by
Rod Crawford <email@example.com>
Edward Dmytryk in his biography 'It's a Hell of a Life But Not a Bad Living', states: "A friend of mine, Irving Reis, had prepared and actually started shooting a film called 'Hitler's Children', an exploitation B. Irving was rather headstrong and somewhat touchy - a bad combination in Hollywood. After a few days, he got into a fight with producer Doc Golden [Robert Golden]. Getting his back up, he quit the film, expecting, so he told me later, to win a quick apology and a free hand. Instead, the studio said, 'As you wish,' and asked me to take over the direction. He gave me his blessing, asking only that his name be completely removed from the film's credits. The studio was willing and I went to work. I finished on schedule, cut and dubbed it, and turned it over to the distribution department. None of us at the studio was sure of what we had." See more »
In the 1930s Lieutenant Karl Bruner would have never called Großdeutsches Reich Nazi-Germany. See more »
That was the last we saw of Carl for a long time. He was swept up in the storm - the storm that was sweeping through all of Germany.
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During opening credits, the camera zooms in on a German book burning, and the book on top of the pile is "Education for Death" by Gregor Ziemer. That was another book by the same author of the novel on which this film is based. See more »
This film must have been rather shocking at the time, as it revealed many Nazi practices which would have offended American morality:
They forced single women to have babies "for the Fuehrer"
They sterilized women who were undesirables, either because of their
race or their ideas
They raided churches and preached the destruction of Christianity
They brainwashed young people and encouraged them to violence against
Of course, mixed in among the propaganda is a love story between a Hitler Youth member and an attractive German/American girl attending an American school in Germany (which is conveniently situated across from the humorously-named "Horst Wessel School"). Besides having solid lead players, this film also boasts a strong supporting cast including H. B. Warner, Hans Conried, and Erford Gage (who would soon be killed in action during WW2).
The quality of this film is higher than other similar propaganda movies of the time, and has some touching (although predictable) scenes of love and sacrifice. And the opening scene of a Hitler Youth rally may serve as a warning against what happens when a politician with a cult of personality tries to control the minds of young people.
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