"If War Were Hell... and Only Hell..."

Explore the True Nature of War and Violence

Previously, in one of our videos on YouTube, you saw WWII veterans first deny then justify a war crime committed by their unit more than 70 years ago. Among the thousands of comments we get on YouTube, one is repeated most - War has its own rules!. So what are the rules? What is the psychology of war?  Are all humans capable of monstrous acts? It is easy to get people into war, but how do we get the war out of people? In this section of DocsOnline we present 4 films that answer these questions - First Kill, The Anatomy of Evil, On the Threshold of Oblivion, and Crossing the Border.

  • 75 min.

    First Kill

    Schrijber, Coco, 2001

    Provocatively, the film exposes the contradictory feelings of fear and excitement evoked by war and our ongoing fascination with war and its memory. What is the psychology of war?

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  • 86 min.

    On the threshold of oblivion

    Verheul, Ton, 2003

    Winner of the prestigious peace award at the Film festival of the independent film in Osnabrück Germany, this documentary investigates the historically very sensitive Nazi raid in the Dutch village of Putten in 1944.

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  • 87 min.

    Anatomy of Evil

    Nyholm, Ove, 2004

    In war situations, some people lose the one thing that makes them human: morality. Their actions are so unreal, it makes you think they are nothing but wild animals. The Anatomy of Evil is about confronting this heartlessness.

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  • 55 min.

    Across the border

    Vredeveld, Saskia, 1999

    In this film, four white South African veterans who fought on the border of occupied Namibia and Angola in the 70s and 80s together with thousands of other young white conscript soldiers reflect on their terrifying adventures.

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World War 2 Package

  • 65 min.

    The Battle of China

    Capra, Frank, 1944

    Chapter VI of Frank Capra's "Why We Fight" series, explains why the Empire of Japan possessed such a strong interest in ruling the disparate lands of China during World War II.

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  • 67 min.

    War comes to America

    Capra, Frank, 1944

    As the last chapter in the series and made on the eve of D-day, War Comes To America is a patriotic statement designed to eliminate any possibility of U S reluctance to invade Nazi Europe.

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  • 43 min.

    The Memphis Belle

    Wyler, William, 1944

    The Memphis Belle: A Story of a Flying Fortress is a 1944 documentary film produced, by the US army, which ostensibly provides an account of the final mission of the Memphis Belle, a B-17 Flying Fortress.

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  • 41 min.

    The Nazi Strike

    Capra, Frank, 1942

    Chapter II of the Why We Fight propaganda film series, examines Hitler's rise to power using captured enemy film footage.

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  • 53 min.

    Divide and Conquer

    Capra, Frank, 1943

    Divide and Conquer is the third chapter of the Why We Fight propaganda series. Using newsreel footage and animated maps, Capra delineates Hitler's strategy in overtaking Europe.

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  • 53 min.

    The battle of Britain

    Capra, Frank, 1943

    The Battle of Britain," Chapter IV of Frank Capra's "Why We Fight" series, begins after Hitler's conquest of Western Europe.

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  • 36 min.

    The Battle of Russia part I

    Capra, Frank, 1943

    The Battle of Russia Part I & II cover the Soviet war with Germany from 1941 to early 1943. Part I shows how the Nazi regime, frustrated by the tenacity of British resistance, sets its sights on the Soviet Union instead.

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  • 46 min.

    The Battle of Russia part II

    Capra, Frank, 1943

    The Battle of Russia part I & II cover the Soviet war with Germany from 1941 to early 1943. In Part Two, the German army falls victim to the Soviet scorched-earth strategy.

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  • 53 min.

    Secrets of Stalingrad

    Hayden, Jim, 2010

    The German invasion of the Soviet Union in 1941 was the largest troop offensive in military history. The Battle of Stalingrad saw over two million soldiers fighting for two hundred days in the most nightmarish conditions imaginable.

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  • 18 min.

    The battle of Midway

    Ford, John, 1942

    This documentary shows archive images of Battle of Midway, which took place during WWII from June 4th to June 7th, 1942.

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  • 51 min.

    Death on the Eastern Front - part 1

    Ihden, Sven, 2003

    The end of World War II. The civilian population falls between the fronts and is left helplessly at the mercy of both the Red army, filled with hatred and revenge, and of the Wehrmacht, incapable of protecting its own people.

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  • 51 min.

    Death on the Eastern Front - part 2

    Ihden, Sven, 2003

    The end of World War II. The civilian population falls between the fronts and is left helplessly at the mercy of both the Red army, filled with hatred and revenge, and of the Wehrmacht, incapable of protecting its own people.

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