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To Be or Not to Be (1942)

A clever Ernst Lubitsch comedy satirizing Nazism right in the middle of World War II.

Episode Notes

In the new episode of Flashback, movie critics Dana Stevens and K. Austin Collins discuss the comedy To Be or Not to Be (1942), directed by Ernst Lubitsch.

Other titles mentioned in the episode:
Cluny Brown (1946)
Design for Living (1933)
Heaven Can Wait (1943)
Trouble in Paradise (1932)
The Shop Around the Corner (1940)
Ninotchka (1939)
Lady Windermere’s Fan (1925)
The Great Dictator (1940)
Foreign Correspondent (1940)
You Nazty Spy! (1940)
Inglourious Basterds (2009)
Angel (1937)
Black Christmas
A Christmas Story
Dawn of the Dead

Billy Wilder talking about “the Lubitsch touch,” from AFI
Bosley Crowther’s review, March 22, 1942

On the next episode: Bob Clark’s Deathdream (1974).

Comments or suggestions? Email us at flashback@slate.com.

Production by Chau Tu.

About the Show

Every two weeks, film critics Dana Stevens (Slate) and K. Austin Collins (Rolling Stone) revisit notable films from the past—movies outside of the current releases and that have influenced modern culture and canon—and analyze them with a contemporary, critical eye.

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  • Dana Stevens is Slate’s movie critic.

  • K. Austin Collins is a film critic for Rolling Stone and a crossword constructor for the New Yorker and the New York Times.