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Mr. Blabbermouth! (1942)

Approved | | Short | 8 August 1942 (USA)
Following Japan's attack on Pearl Harbor, America was rife with rumors about the size of Japan's armed forces and how well-equipped they were to wage war against the U.S. Using animation, ... See full summary »

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(newspaper editorial), (screenplay)
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Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
John Nesbitt ...
Narrator (voice)
Kai-Shek Chiang ...
Himself (archive footage)
...
Himself (archive footage)
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Storyline

Following Japan's attack on Pearl Harbor, America was rife with rumors about the size of Japan's armed forces and how well-equipped they were to wage war against the U.S. Using animation, the first part of this film dispels these rumors by showing that the U.S. had more raw materials and more fighting ships. The narrator also cautions moviegoers against spreading rumors (which are often initiated by enemy infiltrators to create fear and dissention) and believing everything they read in the newspapers. Just because "they say" something, that doesn't make it true. Written by David Glagovsky <dglagovsky@prodigy.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Short

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Release Date:

8 August 1942 (USA)  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The following public service announcement is shown at the end of the film (following the "The End" title card), with a statue of a soldier surrounded by various battle scenes: "America needs your money. Buy War Bonds and Stamps at this theater." See more »

Crazy Credits

Narrator Nesbitt identifies Hitler and Chaing Kai-Shek. See more »

Connections

Edited from Coffins on Wheels (1941) See more »

Soundtracks

Anchors Aweigh
Written by Charles A. Zimmerman (music); Alfred Hart Miles and R. Lovell (lyrics)
Performed by orchestra
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Amazingly effective...
30 April 2012 | by (Bradenton, Florida) – See all my reviews

This is an amazingly well made propaganda film--one that is backed up with facts and isn't about stirring up the people. In fact, unlike most propaganda, its aim is to CALM the public--to get them to understand the facts and NOT give way to crazy rumors. In essence, this short film demonstrates that propaganda CAN be good, as propaganda consists of an argument meant to sway opinion--and isn't always bad. In particular, the industrial output of the Allied nations is compared to the Axis--showing that victory is all but inevitable (which turned out to be true).

"Mr. Blabbermouth" is also effective because in addition to using a lot of facts, it also employs a nice sense of humor when addressing the nay-sayers and people who spread wild rumors. You can't help but laugh AND be a bit inspired and relieved when you see the film.

All in all, at the time this came out, there couldn't have been a much better tonic for frightened Americans. Folks WERE falling prey to insane rumors and they needed to relax and understand that the war was winnable--just not immediately. And, to understand the need to keep your head and confront rumor-mongers for the good of the nation. A wonderful little piece of history that seemed very well reasoned and constructed throughout. Well worth seeing.


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