Published: 28th March 2022
What happened on March 28: The greatest propaganda film ever made releases, largest dinosaur footprint is found
Here's how Nazi propaganda film, Triumph des Willens, used all the right techniques to advance its propaganda and more about Australia's own Jurassic Park
In the hands of a regime with dubious intentions, every medium is manipulated for its leverage. So, why not films? We are referring to 'the greatest propaganda film ever made', Triumph des Willens (Triumph of the Will). Released on March 28, 1935, this is a Nazi propaganda film. The point of the 114-minute film was to project Germany as powerful and credit dictator Adolf Hitler as THE person who would bring glory to the nation. In fact, the führer is the unofficial executive producer of the film and his name features in the opening credits.
When you hear the term 'propaganda films', you will find that the name Triumph des Willens follows as a primary example. Directed, produced, edited and co-written Leni Riefenstahl, her name you ought to commit to memory as someone who played a key role in releasing Nazi propaganda films. So what's the film about? The 1934 Nuremberg rally, that lasted for over four days and resulted in 60 hours of rushes for Riefenstahl. But it's not so much about 'what' the film was about then 'how' the events were presented. Moving cameras, long-focus lenses that successfully depicted distorted perspective and of course, the thumping music and cinematography. Here's an example, the controversial filmmaker used low angle shots to make the otherwise small-framed Hitler look imposing and menacing. Whatever the method was, the aim was singular: promotion of certain ideas.
That's a BIG deal
Just a year after the largest dinosaur footprint, 106 centimetres long, in Mongolia's Gobi Desert was discovered, on March 28, 2017, an even larger footprint was discovered in Australia which was as big as 150 centimetres. This was found along the Kimberly shoreline in a remote region of Western Australia. A vertebrate palaeontologist from the University of Queensland dubbed the site as "Australia's own Jurassic Park". In fact, a diverse and rich collection of over 21 types of dinosaur prints were found. But let's get back to the largest of them all.
The 150-centimetre footprint belonged to sauropods, dinosaurs who were herbivores and had ridiculously long necks and tails.
Also, March 28, 1941 is the day that the world bid adieu to English writer Virginia Woolf! So, here's an evocative para from The Lighthouse, in which she writes about a family vacationing at their summer home. It's a little long, but it's most-rewarding:
“So with the house empty and the doors locked and the mattresses rolled round, those stray airs, advance guards of great armies, blustered in, brushed bare boards, nibbled and fanned, met nothing in bedroom or drawing-room that wholly resisted them but only hangings that flapped, wood that creaked, the bare legs of tables, saucepans and china already furred, tarnished, cracked. What people had shed and left — a pair of shoes, a shooting cap, some faded skirts and coats in wardrobes — those alone kept the human shape and in the emptiness indicated how once they were filled and animated; how once hands were busy with hooks and buttons; how once the looking-glass had held a face; had held a world hollowed out in which a figure turned, a hand flashed, the door opened, in came children rushing and tumbling; and went out again. Now, day after day, light turned, like a flower reflected in water, its sharp image on the wall opposite. Only the shadows of the trees, flourishing in the wind, made obeisance on the wall, and for a moment darkened the pool in which light reflected itself; or birds, flying, made a soft spot flutter slowly across the bedroom floor.”