An Ealing propaganda film made during the Second World War that sought to remind viewers of the threat posed by German fifth columnists; in this film, based on a Graham Greene story, a group of Wehrmacht soldiers infiltrates a quaint English village, tricking the villagers into thinking they are natives by employing British Army uniforms and a variety of plummy accents. It's fun, and the script is full of double entendres while the locals still remain oblivious to the Nazis…
Playing as part of the BFI's celebration of women in WWII filmmaking, this "what if" feature from Alberto Cavalcanti was actually written by a female scriptwriter working for Ealing Studios: Diana Morgan. Perhaps because of that, women shoulder much of the burden of fighting a bunch of disguised German paratroopers who one morning suddenly invade the small, sleepy English town of Brambly. There is a lot of silliness to the plot and the Nazi characters are pretty overblown, but over…
It's oddball, but what-if scenarios of this sort are sort of fundamentally bad propaganda.
'Yes, that's the only bit of England they got!'
WENT THE DAY WELL? (1942)
Directed by Alberto Cavalcanti.
Photographed by Wilkie Cooper.
Based on a story by Graham Greene.
Made as a British propagandafilm in 1942.
Cast: Leslie Banks, Mervyn Johns, Marie Lohr, Muriel George, Valerie Taylor, Thora Hird and Harry Fowler, in another of his roles as a brave young boy.
What a TERRIFIC film this is!
Not the least patronizing or preachy.
Possibly the most thoroughly entertaining and bloodthirsty film I've ever seen about small-village life in the U.K.
This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.
One of the most shockingly violent films I recall seeing. Also the best wartime propaganda film I've seen (note: I've still not seen Triumph of the Will).
Went the Day Well? feels very much like an Ealing film. The characterisation of the small village, the chit-chat between neighbours, and the general mix of earnestness and light humour feels very familiar. When the Germans first arrive in the town disguised as British soldiers, there's little hint that anything more serious than…
Great British institution movie Went the Day Well tells the tale of a small English village being taken over by a German fifth regiment disguising themselves as Home Guard soldiers. Quite dark, violent and disturbing for the time and even has a 'Stepford Wives' vibe as the villagers fight back against the German Reich. Stiff upper lip to the fore and thoroughly entertaining stuff on this very good restoration blu ray print from the BFI.
There's a lot of love for its hidden hilariocity. There's a lot to throw disdain for that hilariocity.
A neatly cohesive execution is what it mostly needs if you went searching for within this film. Too often we have immersion and then something painfully silly such as ametur acting and editing.
I don't wish to throw the film under the nearest guillotine but I thought I'd ought to mention it.
Release the blade.
Screaming army men... They all sound the same.
Smashing propaganda-tinged war thriller; the strength lies not just in the cracking premise and razor-sharp script but also the subversion and then reaffirmation of English village life. A plethora of winning characters and pariseworthy suspense sequences really add to a ripping story.
For a little while I was constantly having to readjust my expectation for this one. I first I was thinking it was going to be a cute little bit of British wartime fun (sort of a dramatic World War II set The Russians Are Coming! The Russians Are Coming!); then when the Germans lock things down fairly early I expected more of a wartime adventure, where someone sneaks off to the neighboring town for help, and though that of course…