The North Star

the-north-starBBB

(out of 5)


Lillian Hellman pens a tribute to the spirit of a Russia suffering under Nazi atrocities during World War II in a film released while the U.S. still considered the great red nation an ally.  It’s painfully dated and corny now, a vision of village life that looks like an idyllic small American town but with the odd balalaika and floral-printed skirt.  and are the optimistic young lovers who go on a walking tour with friends before it is interrupted by planes bombing the land and, before long, turns them into fighters with rifles in their hands.  There are some good performances and a few very well shot battle sequences thanks to having the talent of Lewis Milestone behind the camera (himself born in Russia), but the musical numbers are painfully awkward and the American cast being unable to even pronounce their own character names is tough to endure (, for god’s sake).  The film was re-released in the fifties as Armored Attack, with half an hour of footage cut out, anti-Communist narration added and all references to the characters’ nationality removed.


USA, 1943

Directed by

Screenplay by , additional dialogue in new edition by

Cinematography by

Produced by

Music by

Production Design by

Film Editing by


Cast Tags:   , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,


Academy Award Nominations
Best Art Direction (Black and White) (art direction: Perry Ferguson; interior decoration: Howard Bristol)
Best Cinematography (Black and White) (James Wong Howe)
Best Music (Music Score of a Dramatic or Comedy Picture) (Aaron Copland)
Best Sound Recording (Samuel Goldwyn Studio Sound Deparment, Thomas T. Moulton, sound director)
Best Special Effects (photographic effects by Clarence Slifer, R.O. Binger; sound effects by Thomas T. Moulton)
Best Writing (Original Screenplay) (Lillian Hellman)


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