Black and White and Red Scare Essay

1157 Words5 Pages
The two films I was a Communist for the FBI and I Married a Communist were propaganda films that portrayed the Communist party in the United States of America (CPUSA) as gangsters and thugs. Communism is similar to socialism when comparing their ideologies. The difference arises on how to accomplish these ideals. Communism holds that these ends should be reached by revolution, usually ending in bloodshed as in the Bolshevik Revolution, which created the Soviet Union. Socialism, “seeks similar ends but by evolution rather than revolution.”(communism, 1). During the fifties the popularly held view of the CPUSA was that they were an organization inherently tied to Soviet Union, here to over throw the government of the United States by conducting espionage and sabotage America’s thriving industry by infiltrating labor unions(Communist party, in the United States, 3). This type of view is apparent when viewing these films, the ardent passion of McCarthyism and American patriotism permeates both. I Was a Communist for the FBI was the story of Matt Cvetic, a Steel worker in Pittsburg who was recruited as an agent by the FBI in the fifties to infiltrate the CPUSA. This causes his son and brothers to despise him and causes great pain and turmoil for Matt. Through his work he becomes an important figure in the Communist party. Matt then gives damning testimony against the CPUSA at the end to redeem himself. In the Film I Married a Communist, is the story of a seemingly successful San Francisco shipping executive with a dark past. A Communist cell leader, Vanning, threatens to expose his dark past, and a supposed murder Brad once took part in unless he follows Communist orders to sabotage the shipping industry. After the tragic murder of his brother-in-law and a past lover by the Communists, he decides to finally do the right thing, but is shot and killed in the
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