The Battle of Britain

The Battle of Britain

Streaming Video - 2019
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The official World War II US Government account of Great Britain's stand against the Nazi war machine after the Dunkirk evacuation. Winner of Best Documentary at the **Academy Awards.** Selected for the National Film Registry by the **National Film Preservation Board.**
Publisher: NYX Channel, 1943
[San Francisco, California, USA] : Kanopy Streaming, 2019
Branch Call Number: STREAMING VIDEO
Characteristics: 1 online resource (streaming video file) (52 minutes) : digital, .flv file, sound
video file,MPEG-4,Flash


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May 23, 2020

The documentary uses only original black and white material to tell the story of the Battle of England. After the victory over the French in the summer of 1940, the Wehrmacht prepared for the invasion of Great Britain. The Germans' four-stage plan recognized the importance of gaining air supremacy over the British Isles before sending in troops. But the German pilots encountered a very resolute opponent: the Royal Air Force. The RAF, led by Air Marshal Sir Hugh Dowding, made every effort to avert a German victory. On the German side, Hermann Göring took the lead in the air raids against England at the height of the battle. The Royal Air Force was numerically inferior to the German Air Force, which meant that the chances of winning the battle were small to none. That the RAF massively recruited foreign pilots from friendly nations was not mentioned in the film. Nevertheless, the British pilots fought with great commitment against the German bomber units, and although they suffered considerable losses, it was about one third of those of the Nazis. The Luftwaffe attacked the military airfields in southern England and tried to destroy as many British fighter planes as possible on the ground. However, the RAF hid their planes in barns all over the country. After a British air raid on Berlin, Hitler announced a massive retaliatory strike. Soon, the Nazis jumped to phase four of their original plan and began bombing London in order to induce the population to surrender. Although the British civilian population suffered heavy losses in these attacks, they remained composed and did not give in. The footage shows how people spent the nights in the tube stations. With the heavy fighting in the British capital, the attack pressure was lifted from the main military airfields, marking the turning point of the battle. The German losses quickly reached a critical level, the Luftwaffe did not achieve air sovereignty over England, and had to call off the attacks on British territory. The film awards are well deserved. The information and graphic elements that are inserted from time to time fit well with the commentaries. Recommended from 12 years on.


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