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To Be or Not To Be Film Summary & Analysis

This Study Guide consists of approximately 23 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of To Be or Not To Be.
This section contains 329 words
(approx. 2 pages at 300 words per page)

During the 1940s, World War II was one of the most important subjects of film in the United States. Even before the United States became involved, everyone was concerned about the events in Europe. At the same time, many in Hollywood and the rest of the nation felt that America should help their friends overseas rather than sit back and wait to be attacked. The United States had only recently entered the war when this film was released.

To Be or Not To Be takes a rather humorous look at the events in Poland during World War II. The film also shows a simplistic solution for solving the problems as civilians fought against the Nazis. Many in America and around the world were exhausted as they constantly received bad news from overseas. This film helps spur people to action while telling its tale with a lighthearted air.

The humor in the film comes from several sources. First, the actors in the plays carry on a riotous series of stunts and intense relationships as the film first begins. They even poke fun at Hitler in some of their performances. One of the actors runs into the street during a rehearsal, and the people in the streets stare as they believe Hitler is already in Poland. Also, the relationship between Maria, Joseph, and Stanislav is humorous as Stanislav walks out during Joseph's best speech and Joseph becomes insanely jealous.

Throughout the rest of the film, things become more serious as Siletsky goes to Poland to round up the families of the men who have joined the R.A.F. However, once Stanislav arrives to warn the actors, the humor begins again. We watch as Joseph continues his grand performances, first as Colonel Ehrhardt and then as Siletsky. When another actor then plays the role of Hitler in real life, the laughs and silly stunts create a funny scene where many people are saved from death.

This section contains 329 words
(approx. 2 pages at 300 words per page)
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To Be or Not To Be from BookRags Film Summaries. (c)2014 BookRags, Inc. All rights reserved.
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