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Los Tres Caballaros contra los Nazis (Friday Nite Video)

19 December 2008

Here’s a clip of one of the greatest propaganda films ever made .  Concerned with the appeal of Fascist movements in Latin America during the 1930s, the Roosevelt Administration, at the start of the Second World War convinced at least a few Hollywood moguls to lend their talents — and their talent — to the war effort.

One studio’s efforts outdid anything Leni Reifenstahl ever did — Leni only convinced Nazis in Germany to be Nazis, and did it in German.  This film,  in English, Spanish and Portuguese, not only helped convince the Brazilians and Mexicans to join the allied cause (Brazilian troops fought in Italy, and Mexican airmen in the Pacific, as well as providing needed raw materials, industrial capacity and Mexican workers to keep the farms, factories and railroads functioning in the United States) but managed to find two hitherto unknown  Brazilian and Mexican stars…  who in this scene manage to overpower one of the best, and most popular, American film personalities of all time:

“The Three Caballeros (English version) — starring Panchito Gallo, Zé Carioca Papagaio and Pato Donald —  is available in its entirety in eight Youtube videos, beginning with this one..

I wrote about the Disney Studio and the Mexican contributions to the war effort in my book. A slightly early version of the story was posted here on the Mex Files in August 2007.

One Comment leave one →
  1. otto permalink
    21 December 2008 12:47 pm

    It’s a magnificent movie. Say what you like about Walt Disney, but the guy knew his game.

    I bought it about a year ago for my Donald Duck-loving daughter and we’ve watched it thru together several times. The first time I watched it my modern history antennae twitched like crazy (I didn’t know the story behind it previously), so after a few minutes Googling I got up to speed.

    Fun sidebar fact on the movie. When the movie played Chile, a guy now known as Pepo thought the representation of the condor was so bad he decided to create his own. It became ‘Condorito’, one of the most popular comic strip cartoons in the Spanish language (and my personal fave).

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