Hollywood takes on WWII bad guys

In the Audience

By NICK ROGERS

Watch the good guys triumph in “Hollywood Battles the Nazis.” Our latest “Classic Movie Night” series reflects the film industry’s (eventual) involvement in pro-war (World War II) propaganda film production and the patriotic mood of our nation during that time. Coming up on Wednesday, Sept. 19, at 7 p.m. at the Historic USO Building, is the classic 1942 Ernst Lubitsch satire, starring Jack Benny, Carole Lombard (in her final film) and a very young Robert Stack, that pokes fun at the Gestapo against the backdrop of the infamous Warsaw ghetto. (It’s a great deal funnier than that sounds!)

Before the 1939 invasion of Poland by Nazi Germany, the stars of a theater company in Warsaw are the “ham” actor Josef Tura (Benny) and his beautiful wife, Maria (Lombard). As part of the company’s rehearsal of “Gestapo,” a play satirizing the Nazis, one of the actors takes to the street to prove that he looks like Hitler in his costume and makeup. People gawk at the appearance of the Nazi dictator casually strolling along in Warsaw. Troop members continues to hilariously use their abilities at disguise and acting to fool the occupying forces in this biting satire that manages to be farcical, despite its somber setting.

Be sure to come back in October for the final two classic films of this series: one a stirring adaptation of a Pulitzer Prize winning play, starring Bette Davis and Paul Lukas, who received a Best Actor Oscar® for his performance, (Oct. 3) and the series finale (Oct. 17), a film takes place in a little bar called “Rick’s Café American,” featuring a notorious band of the “usual suspects:” Humphrey Bogart, Paul Henreid, Ingrid Bergman, Claude Rains, and Peter Lorre. These classic films will screen at 7 p.m. on three flex Wednesdays.

And, watch for our very special Halloween night film presentation on Wednesday, Oct. 31, at 7 p.m.

Doors open at 6:30 p.m. for hungry movie lovers to enjoy the tasty treats from our thrifty Snack Bar. Admission is bu donation only and is very much appreciated. For titles and more information, call 760-375-8456 or stop by for a current film schedule.

Story First Published: 2018-08-31