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December 7th (1943)

| Action, History, War | 1943 (USA)
"Docudrama" about the bombing of Pearl Harbor on December 7th, 1941 and its results, the recovering of the ships, the improving of defense in Hawaii and the US efforts to beat back the Japanese reinforcements.

Directors:

John Ford, Gregg Toland
Reviews
Won 1 Oscar. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Walter Huston ... Uncle Sam 'U.S.'
Harry Davenport ... Mr. 'C'
Dana Andrews ... Ghost of US Sailor Killed at Pearl Harbor
Paul Hurst ... World War I Ghost Soldier
George O'Brien ... Single Voice of the Dead Servicemen (voice)
James Kevin McGuinness James Kevin McGuinness ... Narrator (voice) (as James K. McGuiness)
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Storyline

In the aftermath of the attack on Pearl Harbor, director Gregg Toland is tasked by producer John Ford, both now serving in the navy, to film a documentary about that infamous day. What Toland provided was an 82 minute documentary that featured not only the attack but focused heavily on the local Japanese population's supposedly large role as spies providing information to the homeland. Ford took over the direction of the film and the military eventually released a 34 minute version focusing on the attack. The longer version features Uncle Sam telling the audience how naive America was before Pearl Harbor with recreations of Japanese people collecting information in preparation for the attack. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Action | History | War

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

1943 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

7 de diciembre See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(restored) | (war workers') | (Academy Award) | (original theatrical)

Sound Mix:

Mono

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The Japanese planes attacking Pearl Harbor were US "Dauntless" bombers. See more »

Goofs

Showing the events of the Sunday morning attack, the priest at Mass (at Kaneohe, I believe) announces incorrectly that it is the 1st Sunday of Advent. Actually it was the 2nd Sunday of Advent. See more »

Quotes

Mr. 'C': If that's Americanism, it's very hyphenated.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The War and Navy Departments, producers of the movie, are credited orally by a narrator. See more »

Alternate Versions

Some prints carry an additional title card at the beginning that reads "John Ford's December 7, 1941." See more »


Soundtracks

Columbia, the Gem of the Ocean
Written by David T. Shaw
Arranged by Thomas A. Beckett
Played as background music often
See more »

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User Reviews

 
What everyone misses
8 January 2015 | by tttagSee all my reviews

Here's the explanation for this film.

In President Roosevelt's judgment, the 110,000 American citizens of Japanese descent living on the West Coat were a terrible threat to national security during ww2. Accordingly, they had been interned in concentration camps, suddenly and brutally.

Obviously, the 160,000 Japanese-Americans on Hawaii posed an even greater threat, since Hawaii was the most critical American base in the Pacific. Roosevelt wanted these potential subversives locked up as well, and the task of December 7th was to argue for this necessity by indicting the loyalty of 160,000 Hawaiian citizens.

But something rare in recent American history occurred. The military governor of Hawaii, General Delos Emmons said, in so many words, "Nuts, I won't do it!" And he prevailed. The Nisei stayed free. Accordingly, December 7th's denunciation of their disloyalty was replaced with a tribute to their patriotism. And not a single hostile act by a Japanese- American was reported during the war.

Hawaii's successful defiance of Roosevelt is an ignored event in American history — not surprisingly, because it gives the lie to the excuse that continued internment of 110,000 people (mostly Californians) through almost four years of war (and the effective confiscation of their property to the profit of their neighbors) was an understandable precaution in the heat of the moment.

Ford and Toland, whatever their sentiments at the time, were following orders. A year after the war was over, in December 1946, Ford made a point of depositing in the National Archives an 82-minute print, unreleased (but now on DVD), containing Toland's unreleased sequences preceding the 34- minute released sequences. As a single film it makes no sense: the second part contradicts the first, blatantly. Yet it documents a government policy that we have forgotten ever even happened.


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