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Der Fuehrer's Face (1942)

Approved  |   |  Family, Short, War  |  1 January 1943 (USA)
7.7
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Ratings: 7.7/10 from 2,614 users  
Reviews: 27 user | 5 critic

Donald Duck has a nightmare that he lives in Germany slaving under the Nazi regime.

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(uncredited)
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Title: Der Fuehrer's Face (1942)

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Cast

Uncredited cast:
...
Nazi (uncredited)
Clarence Nash ...
Donald Duck (voice) (uncredited)
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Storyline

A marching band of Germans, Italians, and Japanese march through the streets of swastika-motif Nutziland, serenading "Der Fuehrer's Face." Donald Duck, not living in the region by choice, struggles to make do with disgusting Nazi food rations and then with his day of toil at a Nazi artillery factory. After a nervous breakdown, Donald awakens to find that his experience was in fact a nightmare. Written by David Gerstein <96dag@williams.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The picture from which the song sensation was taken!


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

1 January 1943 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Donald Duck in Nutzi Land  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Released on the "Disney Treasures On The Front Lines" DVD for the first time since 1942. See more »

Quotes

Donald Duck: Heil Hitler! Heil Hirohito! Heil Mussolini!
See more »

Crazy Credits

A caricature of Hitler is hit by a tomato, which then runs into the words THE END. See more »

Connections

Featured in The Nostalgia Chick: Shorts: Der Fuhrer's Face (2012) See more »

Soundtracks

Der Fuehrer's Face
By Oliver Wallace
See more »

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User Reviews

 
"Heil Hitler!"
20 February 2009 | by (Australia) – See all my reviews

WWII-era filmmakers used two broad approaches when attempting to discredit Adolf Hitler and Germany in general. The first, and least interesting in my view, was to treat them with the utmost seriousness, painting the Nazis are perverted, sadistic and evil baby-killers, and the like. Secondly, there was the comedic approach, by which Hitler was belittled through having entire audiences laughing in his face. 'The Great Dictator (1940)' and 'To Be or Not to Be (1942)' accomplish this hilariously well, but what about the younger demographics? To help communicate the evils of Nazism to children, the Walt Disney cartoon 'Der Fuhrer's Face (1942)' tosses Donald Duck (voiced by Clarence Nash) amid Hitler's militaristic regime, where he slaves away for "48 hours a day" in a munitions factory, continually bombarded with the swastika symbol and the phrase "heil Hitler!" At the end of the cartoon, after a surreal montage of Nazi (or "Nutzi," as the film says) oppression, Donald wakes up in America, thankfully sighing "am I glad to be a citizen of the United States of America."

Despite winning an Oscar in 1943 for Best Short Subject Cartoon, 'Der Fuehrer's Face' was rarely seen following the end of the war. As the atrocities of Hitler's "Final Solution" came to light, the Nazi badge quickly became something, not to be merely ridiculed, but to be loathed. Nevertheless, the sheer audacity of Jack Kinney's cartoon has to be seen to be believed. There's hardly a frame in which the swastika is not visible in one form or another, and Donald is ludicrously forced to bark "Heil Hitler" whenever he comes across a photograph of the Fuhrer. The cartoon's climax is a dizzyingly-surreal montage in which anthropomorphised Nazi machinery relentlessly beats Donald into submission. It's all a little disconcerting, as was its intention, but it's also a lot of fun. Also featured is Oliver Wallace's song "Der Fuehrer's Face," which was covered by Spike Jones and His City Slickers with great success. Indeed, the name of this cartoon was changed from "Donald Duck in Nutzi Land" to capitalise on the song's popularity.


6 of 6 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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