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The Devil with Hitler (1942) HD online

The Devil with Hitler (1942) HD online
Language: English
Category: Movie / Short / Comedy
Original Title: The Devil with Hitler
Director: Gordon Douglas
Writers: Al Martin,Cortland Fitzsimmons
Released: 1942
Duration: 44min
Video type: Movie
Adolf Hitler, Benito and Suki Yaki are placed in a series of Three-Stooges routines, with the premise that the Board of Directors of Hell has put the Devil on notice they intend to replace him with Adolf Hitler unless he can get Hitler to commit a good deed. The devil has his work cut out for him, and doesn't appear likely to escape being replaced by the German leader.
Complete credited cast:
Alan Mowbray Alan Mowbray - Gesatan
Bobby Watson Bobby Watson - Adolf Hitler
George E. Stone George E. Stone - Suki Yaki
Joe Devlin Joe Devlin - Benito Mussolini
Marjorie Woodworth Marjorie Woodworth - Linda Kraus
Douglas Fowley Douglas Fowley - Walter Beeter
Herman Bing Herman Bing - Louis
Sig Arno Sig Arno - Julius

This film represents one of a small handful of American films which featured the word Hitler or Hitler's, and both referencing Adolf Hitler, in their titles and were ones made around the time of the Second World War. These World War II movies include Hitler's Children (1943); Hitler's Madman (1943) aka Hitler's Hangman; Hitler--Dead or Alive (1942); The Hitler Gang (1944) aka Hitler & co.; the documentary short, Hitler Lives (1945); The Strange Death of Adolf Hitler (1943); Hitler's Women aka Women in Bondage (1943); the comic short, The Devil with Hitler (1942) and Hitler - Beast of Berlin (1939).

Reissued by Favorite Films as "The Furious Phony".

This film was first purchased for telecast in New York City in mid-1948 by WPIX (Channel 11), as part of their newly acquired series of three dozen Hal Roach feature film productions, originally released theatrically between 1931 and 1943, and now being syndicated for television broadcast by Regal Television Pictures. However, no record of WPIX ever showing the film has been found. Its earliest documented telecast was on WJZ (Channel 7), who picked up the Roach package after WPIX was finished with it, on Tuesday 16 August 1949.

Reviews: [10]

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    The Devil With Hitler has to be viewed in retrospect not so much for what it was poking fun at but more so for what wasn't known at the time regarding the full extent of the concentration camps and other atrocities. It is primarily Adolf(Bobby Watson), Benito(Joe Devlin) and Suki Saki(George E. Stone) in a series of Three-Stooges routines, with the premise that the Board of Directors of Hell has put the Devil (Alan Mowbray)on notice they intend to replace him with Adolph Hitler unless he can get Hitler to commit a good deed. As with nearly all of the Roach "streamliners" of the time, it has several double entendres which leads one to believe the censors were either asleep, didn't expect such from the "Our Gang" leader, or, more likely, it went over their heads. In addition to Hitler, speaking of the Rudolph Hess 'trip" to England as one in which..."I lost my Hess", Hitler is heard bragging about his skills as a two-handed house painter by claiming..."I could switch hands and never miss a stroke." I choose not to explain the original source( or activity described) of that line.
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    I wish that people who write reviews for the movies listed on IMDb would keep in mind the era in which they were made and the mood of the audiences for which they were intended. This is a comedy, folks. Who were the big comedians of the time? The Three Stooges; Abbott and Costello; Laurel and Hardy; Bob Hope. Slapstick; improbable situations; pratfalls; weird accents; implausible plots; all of these staples of comedy were used to good effect in this short amusing movie. The fact that it was produced by the great Hal Roach should give anyone with movie viewing experience an inkling that the makers wanted to give their audiences a few laughs. In the second year of WWII, there was very little escapism for the people of America. The leaders of Germany, Italy and Japan must have seemed Hell-spawned when the average citizen read about their daily antics in the newspapers of the day. Making them the subjects of comedy actions worthy of the Three Stooges was just another way to point out their stupidity in an insane world. After all, most good comedy is rooted in the truth, and when you watch this delightful little piece of fluff, put your mind in neutral and prepare to be entertained. Hal Roach would not have had it any other way.
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    The board of directors of Hell want Satan to resign and replace him with Hitler. The Devil refuses to go and insists that Hitler isn't all bad and that he will prove it by having him perform a good deed. Heading up to Germany Satan gets himself in with Hitler and then sets about getting him to do good, while at the same time having to deal with Mussolini and the Japanese General Suki Yaki.

    Odd running time aside, it's a streamline feature running about 43 minutes, this is an odd film. Its a very odd feeling watching the Devil run around trying to prove Hitler isn't all bad, especially when he uses examples of Hitler's cruelties that are actually much worse in retrospect than what was known when this film was made. In its way the film is almost an exercise in bad taste as a result of the revelations that followed.

    But lets not dwell on the bad, lets talk about the good, this is an amusing little comedy. For the most part this is a series of set pieces and running gags concerning Satan masquerading as Hitler, the backstabbing and double dealing of the Axis "allies" and the insanity of Hitler. While many of the jokes will not be new to anyone who's seen comedies of the period, especially the Three Stooges classic rips at Hitler, they are funny and will produce smiles if not chuckles and giggles. The performances are right on target and engender a great deal of good will simply because they are so silly. And while some of the gags do go on much too long with out a really big pay off (they were stretching even to fill 43 minutes) it never wears out its welcome.

    Worth a look if you run across it.
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    This is perhaps the strangest American propaganda films made during WWII. This is because its main characters are the Devil and Adolf Hitler!! In his subterranean lair, the Devil is being chastised by his board of directors because although he is evil, this new guy (Hitler) is even worse and might just be given Satan's job if things continue as they are!! So, in a very weird twist, the Devil is the 'good guy' in the film, as he spends the entire film trying to trick stupid Adolf into doing something nice so that the board of directors change their minds and keep on Satan as the boss!!! And so the Devil goes to Earth and spends most of the movie making Hitler very, very, very sorry he'd even woken up that day. Mussolini and the Japanese ambassador are also featured in the film and the movie ends with a satisfying ending as Adolf not only isn't given Satan's job but he's damned to Hell for eternity. I told you it was STRANGE!!!

    So why does the movie only merit a 5 when it sounds so very, very original? Well, despite getting some extra points for originality, the acting and writing aren't all that great. In many ways it reminds me of the Three Stooges short where the team played Hitler, Mussolini and Tojo. It was, I hate to admit, funny,...but also very broadly acted and written and not especially entertaining except to kids and low-brows (like me). Considering when it was made and why, it IS still a very effective and cute piece of propaganda.
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    This hysterically funny streamlined feature has fictional versions of Hitler, Mussolini and Hirohito gathered together to face the desires of the devil (Alan Mowbray) who wants to bring new blood into hell. Actually, Mowbray is one of a series of devils who visit earth, and he is below quota for new membership. So Mowbray visits the earth for some wacky adventures to kill off at least one of these world villains, and sets pandemonium in motion. Yes, the comedy is a bit in bad taste, but did that ever stop filmmakers when it came to making audiences laugh? Certainly Hitler, Mussolini and Hirohito (here called "Suki Yaki") were no laughing matter, but this is all nonsensical fun. A lot of ribbing at Hitler's expense in regards to his painting has him dealing with an escaped paint bucket, and the farce is as if Olsen & Johnson had taken "Hellzapoppin'" to a new level of mischievousness. Some of these streamlined features by Hal Roach (post Laurel & Hardy/Little Rascals days) are truly dreadful, but this is probably one of his best. Having never heard of this film, I came upon it quite by accident a few years ago on TCM and laughed at it like I hadn't laughed at a film in years.
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    Delightful short, a wartime spoof in which Adolph Hitler (Bobby Watson, a frequent interpreter of the role) is seen so much as being the embodiment of evil that Satan's minions plot to have their master deposed and put the Fuehrer in his place! However, Alan Mowbray as "The Devil Himself" contrives to come up to Earth as the latter's butler (the actor had actually played many such parts throughout his career, most notably in TOPPER [1937]) and trick him into doing one good deed! Nowadays the film will probably be deemed politically incorrect – especially its demeaning depiction of the Japanese, personified here by one Suki Yaki – but it is so disarmingly funny that one can easily overlook this. Among the comic highlights are Hitler's disastrous bath-tub rehearsal of his speech for an upcoming Nazi rally (in which he ends with his current butler sitting on top of him!), the extended night-time sequence in which he shares a bed with Suki Yaki and Italian dictator Benito Mussolini (who keeps referring to Hitler as "The Hit"), each having planted a bomb under the other's pillow, and the predictably explosive climax in a munitions factory. The film was produced by slapstick mogul Hal Roach and, of course, director Douglas would soon go on to have a versatile career capped by the sci-fi classic THEM! (1954). Incidentally, THE DEVIL WITH Hitler would be followed by an equally short sequel, NAZTY NUISANCE (1943); subsequently, the two films would be strung together and released as a feature!
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    Yes, I know that it was made in America during WWII & its basic purpose what to make fun of the leaders of the Axis Power. Still, it does beg the question, why was this, even greenlight? We already seem Three Stooges routine mixed with Axis Tripartite Pact with 1940's film 'You Natzy Spy' and yet again, in 1941 with 'I'll Never Heil Again'. So, why was this movie, even made!? Like many of the Hal Roach short movies or 'streamliners' of the early 1940's, this one is also very poorly written and have recycled childish jokes. It's far from the sophistical & clever humor that comes from other films from that era, like 1940's 'The Great Dictator', 1942's 'To be or Not to Be' or 1943's 'Der Fuehrer's Face". It just wasn't that funny. Directed by Gordon Douglas, the film is supposed to tells the story of the devil (Alan Mowbray) going to Nazi Germany to convince Adolf Hitler (Bobby Watson) to commit a good deed, in order to save his job in Hell. However, the film goes into many different jarring subplots that makes you, wonder, if any of this, connect with the main plot. In truth, it barely does. Still, there is a lot of plot holes. A good example is why would an American Insurance salesman, Walter Beeter (Douglas Fowley) shows up, out of nowhere to sell Hitler, a life policy? How would that, even valid, during wartime, since both nations are at war with each other? Don't get me wrong, Fowley's acting isn't bad, but his character 'out of the place' presence with the semi 'out of the blue' American German Spy, Linda Kraus (Marjorie Woodworth) was, by far, the weakest of the plot in the short film. Both characters weren't even really needed, since no sabotage attempt was ever made again in the US, after the failure of Operation Pastorius in June 1942. So, Kraus wouldn't be, able to spy for the Nazis, even if she wants to. With Walter, all large companies in Nazi Germany's financial sector had to invest in government loans, which the state used to finance the war. By 1942, the Nazis systematically confiscated most of insurance assets of its citizens, the Jews, and the countries, it conquer to a center power, leaving many insurance companies under their rule, in ruins. In short, there wouldn't be, an insurance salesman in Nazi Germany, because Hitler already had most of it. Even if, the Nazis miss some; agents like Walter would be very stupid to sell one to Hitler, because it would always remain solvent, let alone, never make a profitable, since the act of war suddenly presented them with millions of expensive claims that can never be paid in full. Also, if they did, sell one to Hitler; he wouldn't be able to buy 'life insurance' for another country, commander. 'Insurable interest' just doesn't work that way. The reasoning behind that, is so that the death of the insured person does not create personal gain for the policyholder. Allowing someone to be able to own life insurance on just about anyone could possibly lead to intentional harm. Hints, what happen in this fantasy movie. In truth, you just can't do that. Plus, you can't provide life insurance quotes or coverage for temporary residents with no jobs, anyways, even if they're foreign leaders, because the operational theatres were on opposite sides of the world and the high contracting powers had disparate strategic interests on how to run, their economic. In other words, the conflict between Hitler & his allies, Suki Yaki (George Stone) & Benito (Joe Devlin) for this film, cannot really happen, even if they really wanted to. Despite that, I do like the complex lying relationship that the three actors show with their characters, with each other, even if it's highly offensive racist one dimensional stereotypes tiresome typecast roles. I just wish, the movie focus more on them, slapstick trying to kill each other, without the insurance subplot. It would make the film, a lot more powerful; as it shows, how untrustworthy, each of the Axis countries, really are. I also, believe the movie would had work better, if they make more fun of the fascist governments, than the people in its countries. There is no better example of that, than how they treat the Japanese. I know, that the already intense boiler pot of anti-Japanese sentiment in America is all-time high, due to the aftermath of Pearl Harbor, but the film did go overboard, a bit, by having the board of directors of hell, having fun, torturing the Japanese. Yes, you heard that right! Japanese! Even, if they meant, the Imperials. In my opinion, dangerous misleading statements like that, led to internment camps of Japanese Americans. Punishing an entire race of people for the crimes of a few is highly wrong. Focus, the harsh punishments on the leaders, not on the people. Things like that, needed to be, highly expanded and better explained. Also, I felt the fictional representative of Imperial Japan, Suki Yaki could had been better, rather than playing off the far, too stereotype Yellow Peril caricatures, with buck teeth, big glasses, and chonmage style haircut. A caricature of Hideki Tojo, or Emperor Hirohito would be, better, in familiar, and in tone. Also, the represented of the hell, could had done better. The demons in hell looks and act, like a highly technically space Martians, more than Gothic hell-spawns. Also, why in the hell, do they need pills to turn invisibility or wear disguises!? What happen to Demonic possession and sly Devil's advocate!? They're by far, one of the weakest parts of the film. Overall: As a dopey propaganda comedy film, it's highly disappointing, as there is little to laugh at. However, this 44 minute movie is a lot better than its sequel, 1943's 'That Nazty Nuisance' which also features the same old schtick. In the end, both films are not worth fighting for. Cannot recommended watching.
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    I caught 'The Devil With Hitler' a while ago on TCM, and, expecting to see something absolutely dreadful like 'Hitler's Children', found myself delightfully surprised. What a ridiculously irreverent little flick!] Bobby Watson mugged hysterically as Hitler, and, while many of the jokes were pretty lame or corny, or light- or, all three put together- the general atmosphere of silliness made this an awful lot of fun. There were lots of amusing little B-grade Marx Bros.-wannabe touches throughout, like Hitler continuing his interest in the painted arts: here, he has a white room, which he paints black. (I can only imagine that, later, off-screen, someone paints it white again, so he can repeat the process ad infinitum!) This ain't no high-grade satire, this certainly isn't a good movie. But I got a lot of laughs and giggles from the proceedings, certainly worth 44 minutes of my time.
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    Of academic interest as it illustrates just how "dumbed down" a propaganda film from this era could be and still somehow wring out a few laughs from its target audience of potential war bond buyers. You could forgive the moronic writing, the unbelievably bad acting, and the generally offensive tone if it was even remotely funny or had some other redeeming quality. Unfortunately such is not the case.

    "The Devil With Hitler" and "Nazty Nuisance" are a pair of short films produced by the Hal Roach studios early in WWII. Both seem to think it would be great fun to spoof axis leaders Hitler, Mussolini, and Hirohito. The premise is the denizens of hell threatening to replace the devil with Hitler unless he can somehow reform Hitler. Don't expect the witty "nothing sacred" black comedy of "Springtime for Hitler" in "The Producers"; these Roach films show little sign of wit or of wisdom.

    As ill-conceived as all this might sound, it had been done fairly successfully by Chaplin in "The Great Dictator" (1940), in several Three Stooges shorts, and in a number of cartoons-the best being Donald Duck's "Der Fuehrer's Face (1942).

    None of that stuff is very funny (except Donald's) but at least could technically be classified as comedy. If amusement value is the criteria, then "The Devil With Hitler" should not even be included in that classification (incredibly it is even less funny than "Nazty Nuisance"). The only things even remotely amusing are two little Hitler caricatures which run in the opening credits.

    These entries borrow heavily from the comedy technique of Julius Streicher and rely on racist and ethnic humor about Asians and Italians instead of clever writing. The actors who populate this low budget disaster, (Adolf-Bobby Watson) (Benito-Joe Devlin) (Suki Saki-George E. Stone) (devil-Alan Mowbray)-are a bunch of B-movie character actors with no recognizable comedic talent. Even they seem embarrassed to be in this mess of poor physical comedy and extremely (and I mean extremely) lame jokes.

    Then again, what do I know? I'm only a child.
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    Hell's Board of Directors wants to replace the Devil (Alan Mowbray) with Adolf Hitler! The Devil has to prove that Hitler isn't fit to rule Hell, so he sets out to get Hitler to commit one good deed. What a bizarre curio this is. It's all broad slapstick poking fun at Hitler, as well as Mussolini and Suki Yaki. Sensitive types will no doubt find it in poor taste. That didn't bother me. I just thought it was pretty corny. I did find the weird premise interesting. Just not that funny. If you enjoy WW2 films and shorts, and I assume you do or you probably wouldn't be watching this, then you should find this one interesting. Just don't expect to laugh a lot.