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1[[quoteright:285:https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/32b6d427_4e91_499e_bfdf_417aeae5307d.jpeg]] 께''The North Star'' is a 1943 Hollywood war movie, directed by Lewis Milestone, produced by Samuel Goldwyn, and written by Creator/LillianHellman. The movie is a rare example of American propaganda on behalf of the Soviet war effort, and the story is set in the then Soviet Republic of Ukraine, during the summer of 1941. As expected, it doesn't end well for all involved.께The titular "North Star" is a small hamlet in Ukraine, possibly connected to a collective farm, and the movie begins at the end of a school year, and at the beginning of the summer hiatus. Three students at the local school are granted a scholarship, and are allowed to take up studies in Kiev. We follow the three, Marina (Creator/AnneBaxter), her boyfriend Zimion and her best friend Claudia, while they prepare for this, all looking into a shiny, bright future - if only. The small party has only just gotten on their way when news arrive that the ''Barbarossa'' is launched, with German troops breaching in from the west. Thus, every hope of getting to Kiev is shattered, as the problems at hand come crashing down on them. Zimion's older brother Kolya is serving in the Soviet air force, and is the first to take lead. During the movie, all the townsfolk take up arms in different ways and resort to guerrilla warfare, or they simply burn down the village after the "Scorched earth" model. The last part of the movie shows a heroic effort by the core gang, helped by Karp, an OldSoldier from WWI, to get a cache of guns to the home front. The confrontations with the Germans are harsh to say the least, and the ending is determined, bittersweet, with Marina as the only one alive and well, but visibly hardened by her recent experience. 께This movie gained six nominations at the Academy Awards in 1944, but was vastly underrated during the UsefulNotes/ColdWar era, because of the depictions of Russian heroism. The movie score is all SugarWiki/AwesomeMusic, written by Music/AaronCopland. 께Creator/ErichVonStroheim plays von Harden, an evil Nazi doctor. Creator/WalterHuston plays Kurin, a heroic Russian doctor who helps the partisans. Creator/DanaAndrews plays Kolya, a young man from the village who at the start of the war is already an officer in the Soviet air force. Former child star Creator/JaneWithers stars as Clavdia, a teenaged girl who [[TookALevelInBadass takes a level in badass]] when the Germans come. Creator/AnnHarding is in the supporting cast as Sophia.께For other examples of American pro-Soviet propaganda during World War II, see ''Film/DaysOfGlory'' and the truly odd ''Film/MissionToMoscow''.께----!!Tropes to be found in this movie:께* AnyoneCanDie: Of the core gang, only Marina is alive and well at the end of the movie.* BondOneLiner: The Russian doctor at the end of the movie, stating that the German doctor had deemed him unfit to kill anyone. He was dead wrong. * TheCavalry: Literally, as the men of the village mount horses and raid the town to save their children from being bled to death by Nazi doctors.* ChummyCommies: A rare example in an American movie. Nobody can dislike ''those'' commies. * ColdBloodedTorture: The Nazis break an arm and a leg on Marina's mother when she does not cooperate. * CoolOldGuy: Several of the older Russians. Karp stands out, leading the younger ones into battle. * DeadpanSnarker: Kolya. * DeathOfAChild: Several. A young girl is shot down in the street by a German fighter plane. A little boy is literally bled to death by a German doctor who wants blood transfusions for his soldiers.* {{Determinator}}: Every single Soviet citizen involved. * DressingAsTheEnemy: The climactic raid on the town by the partisans starts with some of the men quietly jumping and strangling a German sentry, after which one of them puts on the German's uniform and goes back on patrol.* DueToTheDead: The man driving the truck filled with guns for the resistance is the father of Kolya and Zimion. When he dies, he is buried at the spot by both his sons, after they both have promised him to carry on the fight, and to TakeUpMySword (or guns, in this case).* GirlsWithGuns: Both Marina and Clavdia at the end of the movie. They have to go full sniper mode to stall the Germans long enough to get the guns over to the resistance.* GloriousMotherRussia: Even being a positive take on the Soviet Union, it's still very stereotypical. Most notably, behind-the-scenes material makes it clear that no one working on this film was aware that Russians and Ukrainians are not the same thing. * HeroicBSOD: After the first air raid, with several dead, Marina nails it: "We are not young anymore".* HerrDoktor: The BigBad is a German MadScientist who bleeds Soviet children so he can give blood transfusion to German soldiers.* HistoricalHeroUpgrade:** This being a wartime film, it goes without saying that UsefulNotes/JosefStalin[='s=] Soviet Union is glorified. The movie is set in Soviet Ukraine in 1941, a.k.a. the very place that was devastated by the Holodomor less than ten years earlier. Not only is there no mention of this, the film makes Soviet Ukraine look like some kind of perfect {{Arcadia}}, creating the false impression that Stalin's collectivization totally worked. At one point, Marina, who would clearly be old enough to remember the Holodomor, mentions that she has never really experienced hunger until now. There is also no mention of the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact, making it look like the Soviet Union was a neutral bystander before the Nazis attacked.** On another note, many Ukrainians sided with the Nazis in RealLife, even helping them to round up Jews for UsefulNotes/TheHolocaust. In the film, there are no Ukrainian collaborators. Of course, you could say the film just happens to be focused on a group of Ukrainians who stayed loyal, but even if all the collaborators are safely off-screen, their existence still undercuts the whole theme of the unbreakable solidarity of the Soviet people.* LyricalDissonance: The aftermath of the first air raid on the North Star is shown to the soundtrack of ''The International'', being the Soviet national anthem at the time. Dissonant ''in spades''. Triumphant lyrics as death and destruction rain down on the town. * TheMedic: The local doctor, and also two of the Germans. One of them is fairly reasonable, but gets shot anyway, the other is an ice cold sadist. * MoodWhiplash: The story goes immensely dark when the Germans enter stage.* MusicalEpisode: The first part of the movie has a lot of song and dancing. Nothing of the sort after the invasion.* OldSoldier: Karp, having done his duty during WWI. He is quick to teach the teenagers guerrilla tactics.* OohMeAccentsSlipping: All actors are of course American, and it shows. Most audible on Jane Wuthers as Claudia, who keeps her Texan drawl all the way. Possibly justified if you consider that the movie wished to show that Russian/Ukrainian and American citizens essentially are alike, fighting the same battle. The Germans portrayed do their lines with a thick German accent however. * PublicDomain: The film is now in the public domain, and can be seen in its entirety [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vjVjcBetz9k here]].* PunchClockVillain: Von Harden offers Kurin a drink and says in an admiring tone that he saw Kurin thirty years ago--it turns out that Kurin the country doctor is a pathologist of international renown. Later he says he's sorry that the boy he bled died. Kurin is having none of it, saying in a contemptuous tone, "I have heard about men like you, civilized men who are sorry."* LaResistance: Obviously - everyone takes up the fight. * RousingSpeech: Marina's last words, ending the movie. ---> "All people will learn and come to see that wars do not have to be.---> We will make this the last war.---> We will make a free world for all men.---> The Earth belongs to us, the people, if we fight for it. ''And we will fight for it!''"* SaltTheEarth: The villagers burn down their houses to stall the German advance. Unfortunately, the Germans arrive sooner than expected.* ShellShockedVeteran: The three youths all have traces of this after the first air raid. * StukaScream: Heard more than once, including during the first German bombing of the little wagon caravan traveling cross-country.* SugarBowl: Before the Nazis show up, Soviet Ukraine is portrayed this way, complete with cheerful musical numbers. If you watched only the first half hour of the movie, you'd probably think it was a light-hearted musical along the lines of ''{{Theatre/Oklahoma}}''. When the Nazi invasion does arrive, the MoodWhiplash is severe.* ReCut: In TheFifties, the film was re-edited and released under the title ''Armored Attack''. This version runs 26 minutes shorter than the original, cutting the most overtly pro-Soviet material, and adds an anti-communist narrator, effectively changing the film from pro-Soviet propaganda to anti-Soviet propaganda. At the time, a spokesman noted that, "The only thing we couldn't take out was Dana Andrews running around in a damn Soviet uniform." Both versions are included on the Blu-ray release, which oddly has ''Armored Attack'' as the main feature while the original ''North Star'' is included with the extras.* ThatRussianSquatDance: During the summer revels, many of the male (and American!) actors do this. One man even does it while holding an accordion! * TakingYouWithMe: Kolya the airman, his crew dead, decides to crash his plane straight into the German tanks, destroying several. A DyingMomentOfAwesome.* ThoseWackyNazis: Oh dear. The first one to be seen is an airman who takes out the lorry carrying guns, with PsychoticSmirk nonetheless.* WanderingMinstrel: Kolya, during the opening scene, carries and plays on a balalaika while the gang sings along. The balalaika is seemingly lost with all other music after the German attack. * TheWarHasJustBegun: Marina states just as much during her last words: "We will fight for it!" Justified because both the peasants turned partisans would not surrender at any cost. The regular audience of the movie knew pretty well that the Soviets ''did'' turn the tide two years later - at the time this movie was released. * WouldHurtAChild: The German air raids flatten everything, including several children during the movie. Of the more jarring losses is Marina's younger sister, killed while running for shelter. Later, the Germans force the children to give blood to their wounded soldiers. When a small boy dies from blood loss, the local doctor crosses the DespairEventHorizon.

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