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Swastika (1974)

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Found home movies of Nazi leaders paint them in an eerily human and deceptive light.

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Title: Swastika (1974)

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Cast

Credited cast:
Eva Braun ...
Herself (archive footage)
Galeazzo Ciano ...
Himself (archive footage)
...
Himself (archive footage)
Joseph Goebbels ...
Himself (archive footage) (as Josef Goebbels)
Hermann Göring ...
Himself (archive footage)
Heinrich Himmler ...
Himself (archive footage)
...
Himself (archive footage)
Benito Mussolini ...
Himself (archive footage)
Jesse Owens ...
Himself (archive footage)
Joachim von Ribbentrop ...
Himself (archive footage)
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Storyline

Found home movies of Nazi leaders paint them in an eerily human and deceptive light.

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Plot Keywords:

nazi | independent film | See All (2) »

Genres:

Documentary | War

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Release Date:

September 1974 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Hagekorset  »

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Did You Know?

Trivia

When the film opened in Paris, a stolen print from a cinema screening of the film was found strewn before a monument to victims of Nazis in a local cemetery. A bomb was also found in a cinema showing it, but it failed to go off. The incidents were attributed to an anti-fascist group. See more »

Connections

Features The Eternal Jew (1940) See more »

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User Reviews

Just a stellar cast
8 January 2012 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Home movies of Hitler with Goering & Goebbels & Eva & the gang (much of it at der Berghof, much shot by Eva), a bit of Bormann, Himmler, & Speer as well, interspersed with plenty of domestic documentary footage, predominantly from 1933 to 1939.

Eva exhibitionistically posing in a swimsuit whilst hanging from a lakeshore tree branch; Adolf lovingly petting a German shepherd, & elsewhere observing that a recreational-boar-hunting "Göring should go into the forest with a spear." A squadron of planes flying in perfect swastika formation, Neville Chamberlain's declarations of triumphant diplomacy, even Jesse Owens praising his hosts' treatment at the 12th Olympics.

These were gay, heady times in the Third Reich, and the camera was there to capture it. Fairly fascinating to hear Adolf talk in a calm, conversational tone without spewing venom, and even more refreshing to endure no predictably prejudising Allied-oriented narration, even when things inexorably but slowly begin to take a darker turn in the last third of the film, and der Juden problem begins to emerge (to which a recently fled Einstein vaguely makes a public response).

Quite enlightening to just slowly take it in and in a measured manner comprehend for yourself what you're seeing; thank you, Mr. Mora, for that liberty. Released in the year 1973 (apparently causing something of a riot at its Cannes premiere), was banned im Deutschland for the next 36 for fear that seeing the human side of Hitler would de-demonize him. (The director followed up this effort with his first feature film, Mad Dog Morgan with Dennis Hopper.)

Among the special features (in the Australian version of the DVD, at least), the Leni Riefenstahl attack piece has received both praise and excoriation.


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