6.4/10
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Keep Your Mouth Shut (1944)

| Animation, Short, War
A Nazi death's head "congratulates" Canadians for all the helpful military intelligence he overheard from loose talk and gossip.

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Storyline

With the lurid imagery of a talking skull, we learn the consequences of blabbing military secrets without regard that Nazi spies could overhear and use this information to their deadly advantage. Written by Kenneth Chisholm <kchishol@execulink.com>

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Animation | Short | War

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Edited into 50 for 50: Volume 1, Tape 1: Golden Oldies (1989) See more »

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Extremely Underwhelming
24 August 2009 | by (Canada) – See all my reviews

"Keep Your Mouth Shut", made by the late great Norman McLaren, is a short portraying a talking human skull which warns World War II-era Canadian individuals to refrain from spreading about wartime-related gossip lest he should hear them and pass the info along to his superiors, in the process bringing about a series of calamities to allied forces.

The short is made worthwhile due to the talking skull, which is brought to eerie life with brilliant stop motion animation. That, unfortunately, is the only meat there is to be found in this propaganda piece. The plot is tedious, and the moral of the story is pretty nonsensical. The short could have been so much better if it had been restructured, made into a short criticizing gossip in general and with a more logical narrative.

"Keep Your Mouth Shut" gets 5/10, but only due to the aforementioned skull animation. The story alone deserves nothing more than 1/10.


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