Reviews of film ephemera, including such things as educational films, industrial films, military and propaganda films, tv commercials, movie trailers, shorts, experimental films, and movies made for non-mainstream audiences.
Freedom Comes High (film #4 on Americans in War (NFV, 1990). Also, film #10 on The Educational Archives, Vol. 5: Patriotism. Also in the Ephemeral section of Open Video Project. Also, film #560 on Prelinger Archive.). [Category: Military & Propaganda]
A Navy wife worries about her husband, off fighting the Axis. He is eventually killed in battle, but not before sending her a message that defending freedom sometimes requires that lives be sacrificed, and that he will always be with her in spirit, whatever happens. When she gets the dreaded telegram from the Navy Department, she holds back her tears and carries on. This seems to be targeted at people who have lost loved ones in the war, telling them to keep going despite their loss. One wonders how well it was received by that audience––the makers were lucky that most Americans supported the war and knew why such sacrifices had to be made, because this is an awfully large and bitter premise to swallow. And although the young wife depicted bravely chokes back her tears and reassures us that she and her baby will be O.K., we're not totally convinced of that––they seem awfully vulnerable. Not maudlin enough to be campy, though it is somewhat unsettling.