Beginning at Plymouth Colony. From the title, this 50s film sounds like it will be a dry historical film about the settlers at Plymouth Colony, but it’s actually another weapon in the war against Godless Communism. By showing us how the Plymouth settlers, as well as those at Jamestown, almost starved to death under a communal system of property, but prospered when private property was instituted, students learn that the American system of capitalism is the best in the world, and that any kind of socialism makes people lazy. I suppose there’s a lesson to be learned from the colonists’ failed experiments in communalism, but the film is so didactic and simplistic that it smacks of propaganda, and that undercuts its message, for me at least. It also has all the interest level of a boring history lecture, interrupted by brief episodes of silent reenactments and very limited animation. It does have historical interest in being a document of 1950s anticommunist fervor.
Ratings: Camp/Humor Value: ***. Weirdness: ***. Historical Interest: ****. Overall Rating: ***.