During World War II, a hand-picked group of American GI's undertook a bizarre mission: create a traveling road show of deception on the battlefields of Europe, with the German Army as their... See full summary »
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During World War II, a hand-picked group of American GI's undertook a bizarre mission: create a traveling road show of deception on the battlefields of Europe, with the German Army as their audience. The 23rd Headquarters Special Troops used inflatable rubber tanks, sound trucks, and dazzling performance art to bluff the enemy again and again, often right along the front lines. Many of the men picked to carry out these dangerous deception missions were artists. Some went on to become famous, including fashion designer Bill Blass. In their spare time, they painted and sketched their way across Europe, creating a unique and moving visual record of their war. Their secret mission was kept hushed up for nearly 50 years after the war's end. Written by
I was reminded of Clooney's "The Monuments Men." As much as I liked Clooney's movie, I think these guys and their story would be ideal material for a film. The Monuments Men involved the plan to save priceless art, but Frankenheimer had already used that theme for The Train. On first impression, the camouflage brigade seems almost a parody of The Dirty Dozen. The idea of assembling a squad of specialists, drawn from professionals in the fine arts, is something new. A war movie featuring various artists, art directors and designers for film and theatre, recording engineers, not only to create camouflage but later to create decoys, plus it all being TRUE--how could such a film not make a mint? I totally loved this documentary, and I am very grateful that the recollections of many of the participants were recorded at last. It is a shame that their story was not told sooner.
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