This film is part of the Valour and the Horror series, three controversial films on Canadian involvement in World War II. In the autumn of 1941, nearly 2,000 inexperienced Canadian soldiers were sent to Hong Kong at the request of the British government as a symbolic show of strength that would deter a Japanese attack on the colony. Canada's soldiers found themselves in the midst of a desperate battle they could not hope to win. On Christmas Day, 1941, the British colony of Hong Kong officially surrendered to Japan. The surviving defenders became prisoners of war. Over the next three and a half years, many of them would come to envy the dead.
This documentary looks at the events of June 6, 1944, when a combined force of American, British and Canadian troops landed on the beaches of Normandy. The Allied invasion of occupied France was a turning point in the war against Hitler's Germany. From a tactical view, Canada's role was limited; strategically, it was pivotal. Part of the 3-part series The Valour and the Horror.
This feature-length documentary focuses on the Canadian pilots who served in the air force bomber command in Britain during World War II. From the outset, it was clear to Britain that air combat would be the key factor in the battle against Hitler's Germany. Told they would be targeting factories and military targets, the airmen were actually ordered to drop their payloads on civilians in an attempt to annihilate the enemy. Using interviews, re-enactments, old footage and photographs, Brian McKenna's film depicts the war from the perspective of the pilots.
Part three of a 3-part series, Canada Remembers, Endings and Beginnings focuses on the final phase of WWII in Europe in 1945 and the aftermath. Veterans recount their memories of the conflict at the Rhine and the celebrations on VE Day, followed by their contribution to the victory in the Far East. These recollections are complemented by outstanding footage filmed by army cameramen. The film also focuses on what transpired after the war, when the soldiers had to reintegrate back into society.
This feature-length documentary looks at German POWs from the WWII who were housed in 25 camps across Canada. Filmmaker Eva Colmers follows her father's story - Theo Melzer - who spent three and a half years in a POW camp in Lethbridge, Alberta. Growing up in Germany, she had always been puzzled by her father's fond memories of his POW life, so when she moved to Canada, she set out to rediscover this story. What she found surprised her. Watch as Theo Melzer, along with other POWs, recount how their lives were changed by the unexpected respect and dignity they received at the hands of their Canadian captors.
Based on the diaries of Canadian doctor Ben Wheeler during his internment in a Japanese prisoner-of-war camp during World War II, this feature-length docudrama is a glowing account of the spirit and its will to survive physical and mental suffering. The film is comprised of newsreel footage, interviews and dramatic re-enactments.
This feature-length documentary tells the story of the Asahi baseball team. In pre-World War II Vancouver, the team was unbeatable, winning the Pacific Northwest Championship for five straight years. After the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, all persons of Japanese descent in Canada were sent to internment camps. The former Asahi members survived by playing ball. Their passion was contagious and soon other players joined in, among them RCMP officials and local townspeople. As a result, the games helped break down racial and cultural barriers. This remarkable story is told with a combination of archival footage, interviews and dramatic re-enactments.
The bombing of the American naval base at Pearl Harbor thrust 9-year-old Minoru Fukushima into a world of racism so malevolent he would be forced to leave Canada, the land of his birth. Like thousands of other Japanese Canadians, Minoru and his family were branded as an enemy of Canada, dispatched to internment camps in British Columbia and finally deported to Japan. Directed by Michael Fukushima, Minoru's son, the film combines classical animation with archival material. The memories of the father are interspersed with the voice of the son, weaving a tale of a birthright lost and recovered.
This documentary follows a Holocaust survivor in 1965 on an emotional pilgrimage to Bergen Belsen, the last of 11 concentration camps where he was held by the Nazis. He and 30 other former Jewish inmates travel through the new Germany. Scenes still vivid in his mind are recalled in flashback. The memorandum of the title refers to Hitler's memo offering a "final solution" to the "Jewish problem."
A film record, suitable for schools, of the war years of 1939 to 1945, showing major developments from the rise of Nazism in Germany to the first atomic bomb at Hiroshima. It does not minimize the brutality of war, but shows how this "total war," unlike wars of the past that engaged only the men of the fighting front, involved in varying degree almost every individual of every nation.
Part one of a 3-part series, Canada Remembers, Turning the Tide documents the years between the outbreak of WWII in September 1939 and June 1944. A compilation of modern day interviews interspersed with photographs and footage from the war, this documentary covers landmark events such as the Battle of Britain, the raid on Dieppe, the landing in Sicily and the battle for Ortona. It focuses on both the Canadian soldiers, sailors and airmen who fought in the war and the women who became part of the war effort, either by enlisting or by going to work in the factories and shipyards.
Ages 6 to 10
History - World History
History - World War II