09 August 2007

Propaganda In Action 5

From the other side of the Atlantic, and the opposite side of World War Two, comes this 1940 German cartoon, "Der Stoerenfried", directed by Hans Held, and excerpted in the German documentary, "Hitler Traum Von Micky Maus".

The funny thing about "Der Stoerenfried" to me is how much of the basic plot is similar to those of Warner Bros., Paramount and other American studios' cartoons around the same period, and their depictions of war, as well.

The most striking feature of it for me isn't visual, but aural, when, in one scene, a wasp, echoing both in behaviour and sound, that of a Stuka dive-bomber, dive-bombs the hapless fox, who is the villain of this cartoon.

The sound used is taken from the horn of a Stuka, which was built right into the plane's nose, and gained in volume as the plane dove towards its target, thus scaring the Hell out of anyone on the ground in the target's general vicinity.

It was a nasty bit of psychological warfare, but, at least for the first two years of World War Two, it worked rather well.

Both the cartoon and documentary in which it's excerpted are in German, with no English sub-titles, alas.

However, I think you should be able to get the general gist of the cartoon's plot from the action on-screen.

Be seeing you.

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