Today in my Propaganda and Spin class we watched Triumph of the Will – the infamous propaganda film of the 1934 Nazi Party rally in Nuremberg, Germany. I have learnt a lot about Word War I, World War II, and Nazi Germany thanks to studying History for GCSE and A-Level but I’ve never actually seen Triumph of the Will before.
It’s not a film you can particularly enjoy since with hindsight we know exactly what will unfold in Germany. It’s sometimes a bit dull with the never-ending shots of crowds and members of the SS marching in the street, but I did find it incredibly interesting.
History is written by the victors – as Winston Churchill supposedly said – and I have never read our watched anything from the side of the Nazi party. Now I know that Triumph of the Will is a great piece of propaganda filmmaking but seeing that side of the war, how people came out in their thousands to see Hitler is amazing. Crowds that large in today’s cinema are often down to CGI, to see that many real people filling halls and stadiums and streets is pretty amazing. It’s both amazing and scary to think of the power Hitler had over the German people.
I think Triumph of the Will is something that should be seen. It’s a fascinating look into Nazi Germany and Hitler’s ability to take command of an entire stadium. It’s a historical piece of film that is definitely biased but that makes it no less interesting. I’m glad I’ve seen Triumph of the Will, it’s an interesting look at the other side of the War and how Hitler and his men could enthral thousands of people with a few speeches and some pomp and ceremony. 3/5