A documentary account of the allied invasion of Europe during World War II compiled from the footage shot by nearly one thousand four hundred cameramen. It opens as the assembled Allied ...
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A documentary account of the allied invasion of Europe during World War II compiled from the footage shot by nearly one thousand four hundred cameramen. It opens as the assembled Allied forces plan and train for the D-Day invasion at bases in Great Britain, and covers all of the major events of the war in Europe, from the Normandy landings, to the fall of Berlin.Written by
Obviously, "The True Glory" is propaganda in favor of World War II. Walking away from it, one gets the feeling that this was a war that had to get fought (and when you think about it, it WAS the last war declared by congress - as opposed to the president unilaterally launching it - and we paid for it with high taxes). None other than Dwight Eisenhower* introduces it and reminds the viewer that this is firsthand footage of the war. We get narration from all sorts of people: multiple nationalities, and even multiple races.
But something else caught my eye. Towards the end, we get footage of US troops meeting Soviet troops, and both sides hit it off. Any scholar of WWII knows that the USSR was our ally in that war. Well, a mere two years later, the United States and Soviet Union became enemies. A person seeing this documentary just a few years after its release would've gotten left befuddled at the sight of Ivan and GI Joe happily shaking hands, now that the US considered the USSR the world's #1 threat. But as George Orwell depicted in "Nineteen Eighty-Four", alliances shift depending on which war it is, and memories of previous alliances get erased.
Well, one has to understand that the documentary got released right after the war ended. The footage of Roosevelt, Churchill and Stalin holding their conference looked heroic (most people didn't know that Truman had ditched FDR's plans for a future without war). It's understandable that the documentary won Best Documentary Feature at the Academy Awards in 1946. While the propaganda factor may seem over-the-top, I still recommend the documentary as a look at the mindset in late 1945. To think that there was that brief period when it looked as though there would never be another war, and now a nuclear holocaust looks like a real possibility.
Anyway, you should see it (but also watch "The Atomic Cafe").
*It's probably worth noting that as president, Ike taxed the rich at 90% to pay off the war debt and build the Interstate system, defended Social Security, and worked to ease tensions with the Soviet Union. He could never get elected as a conservative nowadays.
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