Search - Hollywood Goes to War on DVD

Hollywood Goes to War
Hollywood Goes to War
Actors: Walter Huston, Ronald Reagan, Peter Ustinov, Clark Gable, Joe Louis
Genres: Action & Adventure, Indie & Art House, Educational, Documentary, Military & War
NR     2007     19hr 8min

Hollywood rallies America to victory, with appearances by Ronald Reagan, Clark Gable and James Stewart! Included 1. After Mein Kampf 2. Attack! The Battle for New Britain 3. Battle of Britain, The 4. Battle of C...  more »

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Movie Details

Actors: Walter Huston, Ronald Reagan, Peter Ustinov, Clark Gable, Joe Louis
Genres: Action & Adventure, Indie & Art House, Educational, Documentary, Military & War
Sub-Genres: Action & Adventure, Indie & Art House, Educational, Military & War, Military & War
Studio: Mill Creek Entertainment
Format: DVD - Color
DVD Release Date: 05/15/2007
Release Year: 2007
Run Time: 19hr 8min
Screens: Color
Number of Discs: 4
SwapaDVD Credits: 4
Total Copies: 1
Members Wishing: 0
Edition: Box set
MPAA Rating: NR (Not Rated)
Languages: English

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Movie Reviews

Contemporary documentaries chronicle the 20th Century's most
Annie Van Auken | Planet Earth | 08/22/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)

"MILL CREEK box sets offer good-to-average-quality audio and video transfers of public domain material at a most reasonable price. Since their switch over from RAINTREE, the company ID appears occasionally in the lower right hand corner of the screen.


"After Mein Kampf" - An early war film that features newsreel footage intercut with propoganda. This was aimed at easing worried minds of Britons by making Hitler and the Nazis look ridiculous. Dated and partisan.

"Attack! The Battle for New Britain" - Invasion documentary that has its share of gore and racial stereotypes-- typical of that era.

"The Battle of Britain" - All the principal "actors" in this real-life drama are presented in archive footage. Featured are: Churchill, King George VI, the Queen Mother, Hitler, Göring, Rommel, Speer, Keitel, Jodl and Raeder. From the "Why We Fight" series.

"The Battle of China" - The official WWII U.S. government account of the Chinese defense against Japanese aggression archivally offers a who's who of the Asian theater. Seen are: Halsey. MacArthur, Stilwell, Chennault, Chaing Kai-Shek, Hirohito, Yat-sen Sun and Tanaka. Also: Churchill, Eden, Mountbatten and Roosevelt.

"The Battle of Russia" - Chapter #5 of "Why We Fight." The usual cast of characters are here, plus Mussolini, Selassie, Kaiser Wilhelm II, Tsar Nicholas II, Stalin, Molotov, and a dozen other Russian leaders. Documents Russian/German relations and what led up to the Nazi invasion of a former ally.

"The Battle of San Pietro" - The struggle over a small Italian village left 1,100-plus American soldiers dead.

"Combat America" - Clark Gable narrates story of an England-based Army Air Force unit that flew several bombing missions over Germany. Also seen are members of Bob Hope's USO show.

"December 7th, 1941" - John Ford documentary of the Pearl Harbor attack, the recovery and subsequent events. This is the shorter theatrical version. (The full-length film has fictional characters before and after the main story.)

"Divide and Conquer" - Coverage of events after the occupation of France by German troops includes footage of the expected (de Gaulle, von Ribbentrop, etc.) and the surprising (John Dillinger?).

"Marines at Tarawa-Return to Guam" - Eighteen minute short features several Marine officers and men and recounts the battle for a strategic Pacific island.

"The Memphis Belle" - Story of a B17 crew on its 25th and last bombing mission over Germany-- one that was nearly fatal for all of them.

"The Nazis Strike" - German aggressions that led Britain and France to declare war. Includes glimpses of all the "main players."

"Prelude to War" - A U.S. government film defining various enemies and why they had to be contested with all means necessary. An archival potpourri of worldwide political and military figures.

"Report from the Aleutians" - Chronicles the only WWII battle fought on U.S. soil-- the retaking of Kiska, a Japanese-occupied Alaskan island.

"Stilwell Road" - 63,000 men take two years to construct a nearly 500 mile-long road through jungles, across rapids and over mountains-- an artery that enabled vital supplies to reach China from India.

"Submarine Warfare" - The underwater fleet assembled after Pearl Harbor eventually destroyed 55% all Japanese tonnage sunk.

"This is the Army" - Amidst all these documentaries, a star-studded musical! A hoofer stages an all-soldier show on Broadway. Don't miss this golden opportunity to hear Irving Berlin sing "Oh How I Hate to Get Up in the Morning."

"Thunderbolt" - The "Fighting Gamecocks," stationed on Corsica, attack behind the enemy's flank in Italy to destroy all means of supply and transport. A post-war documentary.

"The True Glory" - Footage from over 1400 sources tells the story of the Allied invasion of Europe.

"Tunisian Victory" - The Allied North African campaign from 1942 until victory.

WAR CLASSICS 50 MOVIE PACK COLLECTION is a unique mix of WWII documentaries and feature films.

Parenthetical numbers preceding titles are 1 to 10 viewer poll ratings found at a film resource website.

(5.3) After Mein Kampf ("Mein Kampf-My Crimes") (UK-1940) - Peter Ustinov/Herbert Lom/Robert Beatty
(6.6) Attack! The Battle for New Britain (1944) - Burgess Meredith (narrator)
(7.9) The Battle of Britain (1943) - Walter Huston(narrator)/Frank Capra (director)
(7.3) The Battle of China (1944) - Walter Huston (as voice of Lincoln)/Frank Capra (director)
(7.4) The Battle of Russia (1943) - Frank Capra (director)
(7.7) The Battle of San Pietro ("San Pietro") (1945) - John Huston (narrator)
(6.1) Combat America (1943) - Clark Gable (narrator)/Bob Hope/Frances Langford/Tony Romano
(6.8) December 7th, 1941 ("December 7th") (1943) - George O'Brien (narrator)
(7.4) Divide and Conquer (1943) - Walter Huston (narrator)
(6.7) Marines at Tarawa-Return to Guam ("With the Marines at Tarawa") (1944)
(7.7) The Memphis Belle ("A Story of a Flying Fortress") (1944) - Eugene Kern (narrator)/William Wyler (director)
(7.4) The Nazis Strike (1943) - Walter Huston (narrator)/Frank Capra (director)
(7.4) Prelude to War (1943) - Walter Huston (narrator)/Julius J.Epstein (director)
(6.9) Report from the Aleutians (1943) - Walter Huston/John Huston (narrator)
(6.1) Stilwell Road (1945) - Ronald Reagan (narrator)
(???) Submarine Warfare (1945) - Gene Kelly (narrator)
(5.3) This is the Army (1943) - Ronald Reagan/George Murphy/Joe Louis/Alan Hale/Rosemary DeCamp/Frances Langford/Una Merkel/Kate Smith/Joan Leslie/Herbert Anderson/Gary Merrill/Jimmy Conlin/Hayden Rourke/Doodles Weaver/Irving Berlin
(7.9) Thunderbolt (1947) - James Stewart/Lloyd Bridges/William Wyler (director)
(8.5) The True Glory (1945) - Peter Ustinov/Garson Kanin (director)
(6.9) Tunisian Victory (1944) - Burgess Meredith (voice)/Frank Capra (director)"
Good Content Let Down by Below Average Video Quality
Gregorian Chanter | Spokane, WA, USA | 10/18/2008
(3 out of 5 stars)

"I can recommend this set only as a starter for someone who has just become interested in WWII. The selection of content is good. Unfortunately, the good content is poorly served by the below average technical quality of the video.

I understand well that sources for this set are films that are about 2/3 of a century old. However, what is presented is likely not the from the best sources. A lot of the videos look like they came from well-worn, high generation 16 mm prints. It appears that little to no effort was made to restore the film via video processing (scratch removal, film weave reduction, brightness and contrast adjustment). To add insult to injury, some of videos have been overly compressed in order to save room on the disc for more content. One particularly bad example of this is "Attack! The Battle for New Britain." In the video transfer of this film, one can often see the darker backgrounds of the images locked in place while the brighter parts of the image wander randomly over the background due to film weave. The effect is both tiring to the eyes and mildly nauseating. The source for "This Is the Army" also looks to be a high generation 16 mm print, but with the additional problem of color fading towards red. It reminds me of some of my oldest VHS tape recordings (25 years old) of movies off of the local TV stations. The tapes play back what they recorded back then -- beat up 16 mm prints run on the TV station's own film equipment.

The main saving grace is that this multiple disc set is priced well below the cost of most single discs.

If you want to see a well done transfer of WWII film, I would suggest "Victory at Sea" from A&E."