Denby: Hollywood Didn’t Advance Nazis

Don’t get excited about Ben Urwand’s headline-friendly new book, The Collaboration: Hollywood’s Pact with Hitler, film critic David Denby writes in The New Yorker. First of all, it’s not exactly a big reveal that Jewish studio bosses in the 1930s killed anti-Nazi films and removed Jewish characters from films—that’s been known for years. The book’s most sensational claim—that these bosses were “financing the German war machine”—is not really based in reality and is “inaccurate” and “unfair” to boot. Urwand seems to believe the studio bosses had the most evil of motives, taking into account the depth of the Holocaust—something that nobody at the time could ever have guessed. “The studios didn’t advance Nazism, they failed to oppose it,” Denby concludes.