American culture

Bill Carpenter writes:

It was still alive in 1963. Last night I watched an episode of Combat! Joan Hackett plays an aristocratic Frenchwoman whose chateau is occupied by the Wehrmacht. The pseudo-genteel German officer confiscates her family’s priceless paintings, causing her aged father’s death. Summoned to the officer’s bedroom, the Frenchwoman, pretending to yield to his advances, drives a letter opener into his guts. She hastily crosses herself. She conceals the death and slips a pistol and a map of the position to American prisoners who are being transferred. The Americans escape and use the map to organize a bombing run. The last scene is Joan Hackett sitting in a chair with the dead German at her feet, listening to the B-17’s arriving overhead. When the bombs start to hit and the roof starts falling in on top of her, she looks upwards amid the swirling dust, a restrained but joyful smile on her face.

A great image of our civilizational calling. In 1963, Hollywood still knew it. I like to think Miss Hackett’s New York Irish-Italian heritage was present in that performance.

Posted by Lawrence Auster at February 24, 2008 12:48 PM | Send

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