With the release of the recent movie “Dunkirk” in theaters, I am tempted to say with a bit of wry humor, that the movie Battle of Britain is the sequel to Dunkirk. This is merely an inside joke because the Battle of Britain followed shortly thereafter the evacuation at Dunkirk in August of 1940. Battle Of Britain features many historically-accurate aircraft painted in period markings, including the infamous Nazi swastika painted on some Spanish-built Bf.109 fighters, ironically, with Rolls Royce Merlin engines. The Rolls Royce Merlin was the engine that powered the Spitfire and Hurricane, the rivals to the Messerschmitt 109 in the Battle of Britain.
The Battle of Britain WAS the sequel to Dunkirk and the whole Battle of France. I heard that Dunkirk is hard to follow. Well, if you don’t know World War II, it is. Battle of Britain was a movie that was released in 1969 when Laurence Olivier was still alive (he died in 1989) and Trevor Howard. Battle of Britain was released in 1969 and Dunkirk was released in 2017. I suppose that you could say that Dunkirk was inspired by Battle of Britain. It had a scene of a Spitfire shooting down a Messerschmitt 109 in a scene remiscent of Battle of Britain. Battle of Britain only talks about attacks on the Channel convoys, but does not show them. The airfields are bombed by German bombers, powered by Rolls Royce Merlin engines built in Spain. Those Heinkel bombers were Spanish-built models made in Spain and the Spanish air force still had a sizeable number of German World War II aircraft in use in 1969. It was said that the total number of planes that made up Battle of Britain constituted one of the world’s largest air forces.
Battle of Britain had Polish-speaking pilots in it, who were under British command during the war. The Poles and Czechs mentioned in the movie had escaped from France when it had fallen to the Nazis and from Poland and Czechoslovakia. Poland was severed in half by the Soviet Union and Nazi Germany. Poland had fallen in October of 1939, 8 months previously. The last Polish resistance ceased on October 6th, 1939.
Many Poles escaped to Britain to form the Polish-Forces-in-Exile in the West. These were the Poles who were loyal to the Polish government that escaped Poland into Romania and then France and then Britain. The Polish Government in Exile would remain in the United Kingdom until 1990, when Lek Walesa’s government formed an act of continuity with his government and the Polish government in Exile by incorporating the exiled Polish government. Many Poles could not go back to Poland or if they did, were imprisoned or executed for fighting with the British.
There were the Dutch, Norwegians, Belgians, and Free French that formed RAF squadrons in the battle. The Poles were considered the best pilots in the RAF at the time. The Polish Air Force in Exile was under British command and its pilots were trained to fly the Hawker Hurricane and the Supermarine Spitfire, both Britain’s top of the line fighters. The Spitfire is generally the plane that everyone associated with the Battle, even though there were more Hurricane fighters than Spitfires. The Italians were also in the war on the side of Germany. Mussolini had allied with Hitler and attacked the French in Southern France and the British in Malta and Egypt. They also played a limited role in the Battle of Britain, but it wasn’t significant enough. The Italian contribution to World War II is always derisively mocked by the Allies, but the Italians were able to shoot down many planes and inflict many casualties on the Allies, before they ironically, changed to the Allied side.
The Italians did not trust the Germans because the whole Nazi racial ideology considered Italians to be inferior to Germans, among other things. There were also differences on how the war was fought on the German side and the Italian side. Mussolini was seen as Hitler’s puppet and so was Ante Pavelic.
The Italians did do poorly in North Africa and the British nearly pushed them out of North Africa, until the Germans showed up in 1941. Then 2 years later, the British pushed them out of North Africa and onto Sicily and Italy. The British also had to deploy units to Greece to help the Greeks hold back an Italian invasion that failed rather badly from Albania. In Axis & Allies Global 1940, the Italians can do relatively well and can blitz like the Germans can. In Global 1940, the Italians manage to wipe the British and ANZAC forces out of Egypt. The Australians had to withdraw their forces from Egypt to fight the Japanese, who were a more prevalent threat due to the Japanese close proximity to Australia. It was feared that the Japanese would invade Australia, but they never did because the Allies beat them in New Guinea and the Solomon Islands and at Midway.
Of course, Axis & Allies Global 1940 does not take into account the ineptitude of the Italian high command and of Benito Mussolini and his inexperienced generals. The Italians are beaten back after a few turns in Global 1940, after the British or one of the Allies, takes back North Africa. Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, and Syria belong to France in the game. So far, Global 1940 has been the only Axis & Allies game in which France actually participates as one of the Allied powers. Some players have criticized the useless of France, because they get their butts kicked in Round 1 by Germany and lose all their IPCs. (Industrial Production Certificates IPC, the currency of Axis & Allies). But in the rare chance that France and the United Kingdom withstand the German assault on France itself, France can fight back and beat the Germans, but not for long. The Germans or the Italians remobilize their forces and take France and 19 IPCs of French currency.
Anyway, I’m off topic again. Why am I always off topic? My point is that if you want to experience World War II, play Axis & Allies. I have been a critic of the series for over 17 years, ever since I got on Harris Game Design and got harassed by certain users on there. I was considered to be a troll. Doug Friend created Historical Board Gaming to make Axis & Allies more historically accurate and to represent the smaller Axis & Allied armies who contributed during the war.
In the movie Battle of Britain, German Bf. 109s strafe some parked Hurricane fighters, after the British ground crew try to set the planes alight to prevent their capture by the Germans. A short monologue is given by Laurence Olivier in the role of Hugh Dowding, shortly thereafter the scene in which the German fighters destroy the Hurricanes. Dowding states that not one more fighter will cross the English Channel (La Manche in French) and fight in France. Dowding saw that the situation in France was pointless and that they would lose more fighters to the Germans, when many were needed to defend Britain from the upcoming German invasion.
France was lost. There is a historical inaccuracy in Battle of Britain, involving the American halftracks being used by the Germans in the scene were Dunkirk was overrun by the Germans. The locals were in shock because the Germans had overrun them.
4 years of brutal occupation lay ahead. Saving Private Ryan was the sequel to the Longest Day, as well. World War II was never the same again after Private Ryan was released. That was a groundbreaking film, Saving Private Ryan. There was also Dark Blue World, a Czech film about Czech fighter pilots in World War II.
It’s another inside joke. Saving Private Ryan WAS the sequel to the Longest Day. IT was better made than the Longest Day. The Longest Day did what Saving Private Ryan, did not, it showed the British forces. There were no British forces in Saving Private Ryan because the protagonists were Americans and the enemies were Germans. Saving Private Ryan was World War II from an American perspective, whereas Longest Day tried to balance the two. Saving Private Ryan showed the loneliness, fear of death, and the constant death and destruction of the war around them. Saving Private Ryan used T-34 tanks mocked up as Tiger Tanks. There was the movie Fury, which used a REAL Tiger Tank, but it had it share of anachronisms, as I’m sure IMDb attests to. I’ve seen them myself.
Kelly’s Heroes was another World War II movie made in Yugoslavia before the wars broke out there. It was a social commentary movie about the 60s generation in conflict with the “Greatest Generation” of which was a problem back then. Oddball would probably have been a Section 8 in that war, or probably would not have been allowed to enlist. He brings up esoteric concepts, like “negative waves” which were unknown to people back then. People in the 40s were sick of the war, the children of those who fought in World War II, fought in Vietnam. Kelly’s Heroes was made in the era of Vietnam. World War II was a fresh memory back in the 1960s because most of the veterans who survived the war, were still alive then. Given that there were some who took their own lives or lived tortured lives because of their PTSD and war experiences that came back to them every night when they were sleeping.
Who could forget that? The war took a toll on the people who lived it, and films like Saving Private Ryan, depicted that.
World War II was a war where Hitler had most of continental Europe in his possesion, except for Sweden and Switzerland, which were both neutral and doing dubious business deals with the Nazis, just to prevent their invasions.
Sweden and Switzerland were afraid and rightly so, that they would end up like France, or Latvia, Lithuania, and Estonia. The seizure of Latvia, Lithuanian, and Estonia aren’t talked about in movies back then or depicted. The Soviets stole land from Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Romania, Poland, and Finland and added it to the Soviet Union. The Soviet Union and Nazi Germany were considered to be aggressors by the Western Allies and so was Japan and Italy.
The Soviet Union was also feared by people in Europe. People in Europe were afraid that Western Europe would become communist. It became socialist 70 years later, thanks to the far-left destroying their own cultures in an example of pitiless self-hatred that the world hasn’t seen in a long time.
Europe revels in their own self-hatred of their own cultures, especially Germany. Germans on YouTube are talking about it was wonderful that they lost 2 world wars.
These scum make me sick.
Thank God that the world is laughing at Germany right now, for its pitiless self-hatred and emasculation of their own culture. Conservatives are sick of how Germany constantly beats itself up over the Nazis, 75 years ago. German conservatives, as well as American ones. I would love to debate in German about this.
I saw Kraut and Tea criticizing Germany for going down a bad road. The Nazis terrible stuff, but that doesn’t mean that Germany should sacrifice its proud culture.
Who cares about Europe? I can’t do anything about Europe because I’m over here in America watching Europe destroy itself. Some Jews are derisively commenting that God is punishing Europe for centuries of anti-Semitism. Well, I think that Europe is being punished for turning their backs on God himself.