Friday, February 13, 2009

Friday Film Day: Know for Sure

The day before Valentine's and Friday the Thirteenth. An irresistible opportunity to get in touch with my inner cynic. After all, the initials "VD" stand for more than just a holiday.

This little atrocity was originally a WWII propaganda film. It features a pretty well-known cast of character actors, all uncredited, directed by Lewis Milestone and produced by Darryl F. Zanuck. Of particular note is the reliably excellent Ward Bond, who would again prove himself willing to humiliate himself on celluloid for the war effort. Greater love hath no actor...

The version you're about to see is the one that was edited for use in schools, with all the icky graphic stuff cut out. I remember seeing similar films along about the seventh grade, punctuated with some very descriptive side material from my teacher's military days. Those were the classes where they took all the girls off into another room, so he didn't soft-pedal anything for his all-male audience. You never saw a bunch of 12-year-old boys cross their legs and cringe so hard.

So remember, boys and girls... when the romance begins to blossom this Valentine's Day, don't just hope for the best... know for sure!

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