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Hitler's most ruthless henchman, Dr. Joseph Goebbels, is a fiend to all who resist him. As the Minister of Propaganda for the Nazi party, he has absolute authority over Germany's newspapers, radio, film and theater. With this imposing power, Goebbels has Germany's most beautiful women at his beck and call, but he is obsessed with the lovely actress, Maria Brandt, who had humiliated him by rejecting his pathetic advances years earlier. After secretly orchestrating her incredibly successful film career in order to gain influence over her, he ruthlessly destroys that career and everything else she holds dear when she continues to spurn his twisted love. Filmed while Goebbels was alive and the war in Europe was still raging, The Enemy of Women is itself a sly Hollywood propaganda piece, and the darkly stylish melodrama has a strong ironic undertone as a result. By nesting the fictional tale of a young woman ravaged by the grotesque machinery of the Reich within the greatly simplified but generally factual story of Goebbels' nefarious Nazi career, director Alfred Zeisler succeeds in giving the larger-than-life tableau of war-time Europe an intimately human scale. He is greatly aided in this effort by the outstanding shadows-and-light "noir" cinematography of John Alton, who won an Academy Award seven years later for his camerawork in An American in Paris.

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ALP4794 Enemy of Women DVD (1944/Alfred Zeisler) $5.99