Download Hollywood's War with Poland, 1939-1945 by M.B.B. Biskupski PDF

By M.B.B. Biskupski

During global conflict II, Hollywood studios supported the struggle attempt by means of making patriotic video clips designed to elevate the nation's morale. they typically portrayed the warring parties in extremely simple phrases: americans and their allies have been heroes, and everybody else was once a villain. Norway, France, Czechoslovakia, and England have been all sturdy simply because they'd been invaded or victimized via Nazi Germany. Poland, notwithstanding, was once represented in a adverse mild in different video clips. In Hollywood's battle with Poland, 1939-1945, M. B. B. Biskupski attracts on an in depth examine of prewar and wartime motion pictures reminiscent of To Be or to not Be (1942), In Our Time (1944), and None Shall get away (1944). He researched memoirs, letters, diaries, and memoranda written by means of screenwriters, administrators, studio heads, and actors to discover the damaging portrayal of Poland in the course of global struggle II. Biskupski additionally examines the political weather that inspired Hollywood films.

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Extra info for Hollywood's War with Poland, 1939-1945

Example text

In sum, identifiably Jewish characters appeared in scores of Hollywood productions before World War II, and there were a number of films about Jews and Jewish themes. None of these films portray them in a negative light. The relatively large number of Jewish films reflects the facts that the Jewish immigration to the United States preceded the Polish arrival by perhaps a generation and that the Jews—like the Irish—quickly established themselves in the entertainment industry. Later immigrants, Eastern and Southern Europeans, arrived at a time when certain ethnic types were already created by vaudeville, Broadway, and later radio.

This tradition of regular and prominent Irish roles continued during the war years, in which hardly any film failed to feature at least one Irish character, often in a leading and heroic role. 45 This phenomenon is easy to explain. Most important, the Irish came earlier to the United States and arrived in larger numbers than did the Poles. They also had the considerable advantage of speaking English. The Irish played a major role in vaudeville, which later was translated into Broadway and radio.

They wear exotic costumes, a mélange of styles. Similarly, they speak a sort of common Slavic, with elements from Russian and Ukrainian thrown about for linguistic seasoning, all of it enunciated with much gesticulation and rolling of eyes. Their names are a grab bag of strange sounds. Hence Tony’s novel—supposedly based on the local Poles, with Manya the invaluable native informant—fea- The Polish Presence in American Cinema before 1939â•… 37 tures principals named Sonya and Henirich, neither of which is Polish.

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