Thomas Campbell's Sahara Reflections
Overall Sahara does a relatively good job to represent most of the six basic categories and themes that were outlined by the U.S government to ensure that Hollywood films are not just entertaining but also patriotic in its contribution to the war effort. As this film is produced in 1943 (during WWII) it was important to fit the propagandistic nature. This compares to the films of today as they focus mainly on the entertainment value.
The most obvious theme throughout the film was "the nature of the enemy". In the film the Germans were seen as dirty, horrible, backstabbing, no good enemy's that could not be trusted. This is evident when Frenchy comes down to negotiate with the Germans. The white flags were up which represents no fighting, however negotiations did not go the way the Germans would had liked so hey shot him in the back on his return. This was also shown through the German Pilot that was captured. He continued to be arrogant throughout the film pretending to not know the English language.
Another theme shown in the film is "the issues of the war". This is emphasized by all of the countries fighting in the war for their freedom. One scene that I can remember from the film was where some soldiers pulled out a picture of their wife and would talk about maintaining safety and freedom of their loved ones back home in America.
The third theme shown in the film is "the united nations" theme. This is well represented as the British and the U.S Soldiers led by Humphrey Bogart worked well in alliance together fighting for the right reasons. On top of their brave fighting against the Germans the U.S and British soldiers bonded together one the US Army tank picked up their allies and even worked together to defeat 500 Germans with only 9 of their men in a battle of the odds.
"The production front" theme was not as obvious, however throughout the movie it was emphasized that the allies and U.S needed more resources. There was only one tank remaining which would continue to break down, and the water wells were all dried up except one which was just dripping the remaining of it's water.
"The fighting forces" theme was evident throughout the entirety of the film. It showed how the U.S had great leadership, effectiveness, and fairness. A scene that comes to mind is the rationing of the water to each of the soldiers and prisoners. Humphrey Bogart the U.S leader ordered that each soldier can only drink three gulps each, even allowing the prisoners the same fairness.
"The home front" was not evident throughout this film as the entire film is produced in the desert with no civilians present, however soldiers did talk about their homes and their loved ones.
Overall I really enjoyed this movie. It had good humor along with good themes related to the war. I mentioned in last weeks blog that I am not a big fan of older films, however after this weeks film I am starting to appreciate the value of them, and would definitely watch Sahara again.