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Jun 2, 2023

Our Warner Brothers 1943 episode is a very special one, a Popular Front anti-Nazi double feature, the Stalinist propaganda film Mission to Moscow (directed by Michael Curtiz) and Lewis Milestone's drama about Norwegian resistance to the Nazi occupation, Edge of Darkness. We attempt (as complete non-experts!) to lay out the stakes involved in the case made by Mission to Moscow and discuss the circumstances of the film's production and the impact it made on Hollywood. Then we move on to Milestone and screenwriter Robert Rossen's depiction of what it takes to form a successful resistance movement—in this case led by a subdued Errol Flynn and a steely Ann Sheridan. Come to find out how Dave and Elise would have felt about living through Stalin's Five-Year Plans, stay to find out whether or not they would have been quislings.

Time Codes:

0h 00m 45s:      MISSION TO MOSCOW [dir. Michael Curtiz]

0h 45m 43s:      EDGE OF DARKNESS [dir. Lewis Milestone]


Studio Film Capsules provided by The Warner Brothers Story Clive Hirschhorn

Additional studio information from: The Hollywood Story by Joel W. Finler



* Marvel at our meticulously ridiculous Complete Viewing Schedule for the 2020s

* Intro Song: “Sunday” by Jean Goldkette Orchestra with the Keller Sisters (courtesy of The Internet Archive)

* Read Elise’s latest film piece on Preston Sturges, Unfaithfully Yours, and the Narrative role of comedic scapegoating.

* Check out Dave’s new Robert Benchley blog – an attempt to annotate and reflect upon as many of the master humorist’s 2000+ pieces as he can locate – Benchley Data: A Wayward Annotation Project! 

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