Watch B-17 Flying Fortresses go out on the first all-American bomb raid over Europe, in 1942. This time, everyone comes home… In three installments.
June Christy took over the singer’s mic in the Stan Kenton band in 1945. Here she and the band perform the title cut in the movie that same year.
George Lucas brings the story of the Tuskegee Airmen to movie theaters across the country in January 2012.
Future president Ronald Reagan stars in a US Army Air Forces training film that teaches pilots how to recognize planes.
A US Navy film teaches pilot trainees how to level their planes, climb, glide, and more.
Gene Krupa steals the show from Barbara Stanwyck in Ball of Fire.
The star of the Wizard of Oz performs the classic "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas" in this movie clip from 1944.
Sixty years before Renée Zellwegger played the starring showgirl in the Oscar-winning 2002 film Chicago, Ginger Rogers played the same character. In this scene that didn’t make the final cut of 1942’s Roxie Hart, Rogers does the Charleston as only she could.
Sir Lancelot adapted his song "Shame and Scandal in the Family" for 1943’s I Walked with a Zombie, now a certified zombie film classic.
If you went to the movies late in World War II, you would at some point have seen this 1944 reel with operatic singing by Brooklyn’s Merrill Miller.
The Skating Vanities and its star Gloria Nord did a routine for the 1944 Betty Grable movie Pin Up. Skaters take the stage in glorious red-white-and-blue at 2:06 in this clip, and Nord, herself a popular pinup, first peeks out at 2:54.
Censors thought the 1943 movie financed by multimillionaire Howard Hughes was too racy and blocked its general release. Undeterred, Hughes promoted the movie ceaselessly and by the time it came out in 1946, costar Jane Russell was famous. View the official trailer.
WIth gliders and paratroopers taking the lead, the Allies invade Sicily in this wartime newsreel featuring live combat film shot from US Navy ships along the coast.
In a mind-boggling reminiscent of the Who’s on First routine, Lou Costello makes his case for the equation 13 x 7 = 28 to an incredulous Bud Abbott in this clip from 1941’s In the Navy.
Two period newsreel segments profile the 1st American Volunteer Group, with shots of its shark-faced Curtiss P-40 fighters in flight, of its pilots and crews in action, and of its innovative commander, Claire Chennault.
Watch the promotional trailer for the 1942 film Flying Tigers, Hollywood’s take on the US airmen of the 1st American Volunteer Group who helped defend China from Japan.
See and hear the V-1 rocket—the buzz bomb—that tormented Allied forces and civilians in Europe. When an overhead buzz bomb fell silent, death was on its way.
Check out Uncle Sam’s GI Bill for WWII vets—a deal that gave America an educated workforce and thriving middle class—in this no-malarkey wartime film.
Pull down the blackout shades and watch the artful wartime propaganda film Birth of the B-29. You’ll be in 1945 faster than you can decipher MCMXLV!
On a test site in Alamogordo, New Mexico, on July 16, 1945, men of science and men of war watched the world change forever when they witnessed the first explosion of an atomic bomb. The blast begins about 8:50 in this cut of US government footage.
This United News newsreel puts you aboard the USS Missouri in Tokyo Bay on September 2, 1945, as a witness to Japan’s official surrender.
Take a GI’s victory tour of the Berghof—Hitler’s home in the Bavarian Alps near Berchtesgaden, Germany—in this 1945 newsreel.
In a March 1945 German newsreel, Hitler Youth boys—like the ones GIs encountered in Heilbronn—talk proudly of their combat experiences.
Thanks to heroic military cameramen, you can follow the US marines onto Iwo Jima in this 1945 Office of War Information film. Shown in two parts.
The Battle of the Bulge unfolds onscreen—along with a toughen-up message addressed to home-front civilians—in this 1945 army newsreel.
Brazilian singer Carmen Miranda adds Latin spice to the 1942 film Springtime in the Rockies with her take on “Chattanooga Choo-Choo.”
Watch a wartime German newsreel footage and see how the Nazi government made German civilians think the Allied invasion of Normandy was another victory for the Third Reich.
The iconic vocal harmony trio perform the quintessential swinging WWII song "Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy" in the Abbot and Costello movie Buck Privates.
In this clip from the US Office of War Information, the silver screen sex symbol with the peekaboo hair gets a look that’s safe for wartime factory work.
Porky and Elmer back up the Cwazy Wabbit as he sings and dances for the war effort in the Looney Tunes short “Any Bonds Today?”
See real footage of air and sea combat during the Battle of Leyte Gulf in a segment from the 1950s TV series Victory at Sea.
Songbird Ella Fitzgerald jazzes up a Wild West bus tour with her hit “A-Tisket A-Tasket” in Abbot and Costello’s 1942 movie Ride ’Em Cowboy.
Travel back to the 1940s and taste the bittersweet experience of wartime Christmas at the front and on the American home front.