This MGM short, part of the A Pete Smith Specialty series, focuses on the young men who have signed up to serve their country. Speed, teamwork and accuracy are the hallmark of all army ... See full summary »
Pete Smith doesn't display much of his trademark snark in this Academy-Award-nominated short, in which he tries to convince the audience that the sort of physical training that American youths got in high school sports will enable them to fight in the forthcoming war.
1941 saw the first peacetime draft -- my father went into the army well before Pearl Harbor -- and all the studios were preparing for war by turning out short propaganda pieces like this. The Academy was responding by handing out a lot of Oscars for non-fiction short subjects.
Pete offers some straightforward information, a couple of jokes and a bit of double-talk, in which Bouncing Betties become Leaping Elizabeths. It's fast, it's furious and the visuals are all undercranked to make the recruits look faster and more formidable. Very slick.