Bob Schwartz

Tomorrow Belongs to Me

tomorrow-belongs-to-me

There are two outstanding movie moments—one light, one dark—that tell two stories about Nazi Germany.

We will start light, from the movie The Producers (1968). In it, Mel Brooks incorporated an unthinkable stage musical called Springtime for Hitler. The title song-and-dance number mocks the lunatic aspirations and monstrosity of the Third Reich—mockable because just twenty-three years earlier, they had lost the war. It provides the most laughs anyone has provided or will provide on the subject. It is the most audacious thing any movie director has put on film.

Germany was having trouble
What a sad, sad story
Needed a new leader to restore
Its former glory
Where, oh, where was he?
Where could that man be?
We looked around and then we found
The man for you and me

And now it’s
Springtime for Hitler and Germany
Deutschland is happy and gay!
We’re marching to a faster pace
Look out, here comes the master race!
Springtime for Hitler and Germany
Rhineland’s a fine land once more!
Springtime for Hitler and Germany
Watch out, Europe
We’re going on tour!

Springtime for Hitler and Germany!
Winter for Poland and France
Come on, Germans
Go into your dance!

The second, darker vision is from the movie Cabaret (1972). It is set in 1931 Berlin. The characters sit at an outdoor café. A young man in a brown shirt begins singing Tomorrow Belongs to Me. It is a sweet tune at first (“The sun on the meadow is summery warm…”), but as the crowd stands to join in, the song grows belligerent and menacing. We know how the story turns out, and though some may think rehashing it is overdone and almost clichéd, we are chilled each time. Because the threat is never as far as we might think.

The sun on the meadow is summery warm
The stag in the forest runs free
But gathered together to greet the storm
Tomorrow belongs to me

The branch on the linden is leafy and green
The Rhine gives its gold to the sea
But somewhere a glory awaits unseen
Tomorrow belongs to me

Now Fatherland, Fatherland, show us the sign
Your children have waited to see
The morning will come
When the world is mine
Tomorrow belongs to me
Tomorrow belongs
Tomorrow belongs
Tomorrow belongs to me

The Beverly Hillbillies Go To Washington

clampetts-in-washington

I was thinking about a very rich family with more money than sense, and about their beautiful daughter and a son who thinks he is a lot smarter than he is. They eventually go to Washington.

The Clampetts of The Beverly Hillbillies.

In 1970, for the first three episodes of the hit show’s ninth and last season, the Clampetts (Jed, Granny, Elly May, Jethro) go to Washington, initially to solve the pollution problem.

It is a very long, complicated, politically incorrect and stupid story. At one point, Jed buys the White House from a fake Native American so that the Clampetts can move in. He later buys the Capitol. And that’s not even the stupidest part (taken to the Psych ward, Jethro tries to figure out where the countries of Paranoia and Schizophrenia are).

Following are descriptions of the episodes (from TV.com) and links to the videos. The descriptions are fun. As for watching the videos, you will not laugh once, you will occasionally cringe, but you may come away thinking that the Clampetts buying and moving into the White House is not the most ridiculous thing you’ve ever heard.

The Pollution Solution (9/15/70)

Drysdale is trying to get his money back, while Jed is trying to prevent him from doing so. And Jethro is trying to come up with a way to beat the smog problem. Drysdale sends Jane over to get the money, posing as a guard. When Jed doesn’t give it to him, Drysdale tells him what he’s got is a drop in the bucket, and only the President could really do anything. Jed returns the money and says he plans to give all his money to the President. To help out, Jethro comes up with the electric car, after inventing the smog-causing steam car, and says he can drive them to D.C. in it. Drysdale arranges a comic to pose as the President over the phone to keep them from giving their money away, telling him Jed thinks he is worth 95 million. Rich Little, posing as Nixon, tells them to do what the man in the white coat says. When a milkman at the mansion reads a note Granny left and tells Jethro the message says they’re going to Washington, the Clampetts get on a plane, and Drysdale is too late to stop them. They tell the stewardess about their plans when they meet Mr. President, which sound outrageous, and when Jed asks her how high they are flying, she tells them a lot higher than the plane.

The Clampetts in Washington (9/22/70)

The Clampetts head to Washington D.C. to give their money to the President, and Honest John and Flo follow. Honest John convinces the Clampetts that he knows the President and that they can give him money, which he will in return give to the President. Flo poses as Sitting Hawk, the last of the District Of Colombia Native Americans. She sells Jed the White House for one million. After that, the Clampetts go to the White House to move in, but are stopped by the guard. They use some of their new District Of Colombia words to the guard. He sends for a car to take the Clampetts away. They get in the car, expecting to go visit the President, when in reality they were taken away in a police car.

Jed Buys the Capitol (9/29/70)

The Clampetts are confused after being taken to a place called a Psych ward and being called “Paranoiacs and Schizophrenics.” They ask Honest John what it is about. He tells them it is a mistake and promises they can see the President, just as soon as some trouble is settled. He returns to Flo and tells her he is going to take the Clampetts for another two million. She wants to go to Guatemala, but he gets her to pose. They sell Jed the Capitol, and much more of the property. Meanwhile, Jethro is trying to figure out where the countries of Paranoia or Schizophrenia are. Jed and Granny return to say they’ve bought more land. Honest John sells them more and more property, and at the end, he has ten million in property sold. But Elly is looking for a kitten and walks in on Honest John and Flo. The Clampetts all see this and think he is still the salt of the earth for taking in a 150 year old Native American woman. He admits she is his wife, and they are crooks. They misunderstand and still praise him, and he tears up the checks worth ten million. The Clampetts think they have over-praised him yet again.