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Film / The Moon is Down

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The Moon Is Down is a 1943 American World War II film adapted from the 1942 novel of the same name by John Steinbeck, directed by Irving Pichel and starring Cedric Hardwicke, Henry Travers, and Lee J. Cobb.

During the German occupation of Norway, a small village struggles to cope with the invaders and some locals choose collaboration while others prefer armed resistance.

This film provides examples of the following tropes:

  • Artistic License – Linguistics: The film is set in Norway, but the signs are in English.
  • Artistic License – Military:
    • The Norwegian squad that spots the German parachutists gets mowed down by them with a machine gun. The thing is, the parachutists look like normal Heer infantry with Stahlhelm helmets, not like Fallschirmjäger with "bowl" helmets (without the projecting visor and flared rim) like they should.
    • Speaking of the helmets, the shape of those seen in the film on all German soldiers screams M1916 type from the second half of World War I, not the M1935 (all previous Stahlhelm types were phased out for long in the German army by 1940), which would have likely been hard to get in large quantities at this point of the war.
    • The parachutists also use a heavy Maxim machine gun. By that time, the German army used the much more practical, lighter and deadlier MG 34.
  • As Long as It Sounds Foreign: The film opens with Adolf Hitler contemplating a map of Norway, making hand gestures on it (only his hand is seen, actually) and boasting about invading the country in pseudo-German gibberish.
  • The Faceless: Hitler appears in the film's opening, but only his hand is seen.
  • It's Raining Men: The film's German invasion of Norway starts with a drop of parachutists.
  • Menacing Hand Shot: The film's opening, with Adolf Hitler's hand (the only body part of his that's seen) making menacing gestures over a map of Norway.
  • Trrrilling Rrrs: Adolf Hitler goes full Large Ham in the opening, rolling his "Rrrs" like there's no tomorrow.