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Going Hollywood: The War Years (1988) Poster

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According to this documentary, the first Hollywood anti-Nazi film was Confessions of a Nazi Spy (1939), made six years after Adolf Hitler came to power in Germany.
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Van Johnson hosts this documentary and he himself was a star of the Hollywood World War II war movie. His movies about WW II have included Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo (1944); Battleground (1949); Command Decision (1948); Go for Broke! (1951); The Caine Mutiny (1954) ; A Guy Named Joe (1943); The White Cliffs of Dover (1944); The Last Blitzkrieg (1959); The Enemy General (1960) and Battle Squadron (See: La battaglia d'Inghilterra (1969)).
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The documentary states that by 1944, weekly attendance at cinemas in the USA had increased from 55 million in 1941 to 100 million in 1944, maintaining that by 1944, two thirds of the nation went to the pictures every week.
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Hollywood World War II movies made during the WW 2 have influenced many a later movie including Apocalypse Now (1979) and Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope (1977). Going Hollywood: The War Years (1988) says that these movies and others have "...borrowed from the techniques and cinematography used to depict the Second World War."
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This documentary reports that two months after Italy surrendered in World War II, the Hollywood WW 2 movie Sahara (1943) was released with an Italian as a principal character - and a good guy. This was J. Carrol Naish playing Giuseppe in Sahara (1943).
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This doc says that women went to work during World War II but very few Hollywood movies actually portrayed women characters working in the films of this period.
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Going Hollywood: The War Years (1988) maintains that by the end of 1942, nearly six million men and women of the United States of America were in military service, about three quarters of these were serving at home on the home front in defense related jobs whilst about a quarter of them were fighting overseas.
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Going Hollywood: The War Years (1988) states that many Japanese characters in films of the World War II period were actually played by Chinese actors. This was because 112,000 Japanese-Americans, who had lived in the USA for years, were transferred to relocation centers and "stripped of their property" during WW 2.
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This documentary shows many clips from Hollywood World War II movies, as the DVD / video sleeves for it state, its a "lively compilation" of vintage feature-film clips and "original wartime footage". But virtually all of them are not annotated with a movie's title (only with actors' and/or actresses' names), nor is a list of the titles shown during the closing credits, making it possibly difficult for the viewer to know which film is which unless they know the movie.
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Clips of Hollwyood World War II movies seen and discussed in this documentary include Confessions of a Nazi Spy (1939); Foreign Correspondent (1940); To Be or Not to Be (1942); Flying Tigers (1942); Air Force (1943); Crash Dive (1943); Bataan (1943); Sahara (1943); and Guadalcanal Diary (1943); 'Gung Ho!': The Story of Carlson's Makin Island Raiders (1943); The Fighting Seabees (1944); The Purple Heart (1944); Since You Went Away (1944); Dragon Seed (1944); Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo (1944); Blood on the Sun (1945); Pride of the Marines (1945); and They Were Expendable (1945).
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This program suggests that the Ernst Lubitsch World War 2 comedy To Be or Not to Be (1942) may be the only ever comedy about the WW II Nazi German occupation of Poland.
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According to this program, the War Department of the USA Government censored all newsreels and movie scripts but Van Johnson says you'd never know it from seeing the footage.
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For Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo (1944), according to this doc, the MGM studio recreated the section of an air craft carrier flat top on a sound stage large enough to fit four genuine B25 planes whilst a whole sixty foot miniature was also built, placed in the studio tank doubling as the ocean. Moreover, this special effects Academy Award winning movie utilized model planes, hydraulic jacks, wires, motors, pulleys, and a miniature model of Tokyo used to show the bombing of that city with mini explosions.
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According to the article "On the Battlefront" by Clyde Jeavons in the film history tome 'The Movie', " . . . out of approximately 1700 features produced between 1942 and 1945 over 500 about 30%] were war films of one kind or another."
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Only 5% of Hollywood movies in 1940 dealt with World War II, according to this documentary. These movies were "denounced" by pro-Germans and isolationists as "propaganda".
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