A Yank at Eton
A Yank at Eton is an American comedy/drama film. It was the 1942 sequel to the 1938 A Yank at Oxford. All of it was filmed in the United States and none of it at Eton. It tells the tale of a rich, wild, cocky youth (Mickey Rooney) from an elite American school who has to move to England, where he attends the elite Eton College.
Much of the storyline relates to the misunderstandings arising from differences between the two countries' cultures, customs and language. At first these cause the boy anger and confusion and the film caricatures English manners and behavior as snobbish and stuffy. But in due course he settles down, stops being rebellious and comes to realize that, beneath the different habits and views, "Yanks" and "Limeys" have basic values in common and can get along when they have to.
The propaganda intent, as U.S. troops poured into the U.K. to join World War II in 1942, was evidently to show that Americans and Britons could set aside their superficial differences and pull together in the common cause of the war effort.
One of the "cultural clashes" portrayed involves the prevalence at Eton of corporal punishment (perhaps the producers were unaware that CP also existed in American schools). In one scene, Rooney has to bend over a chair to receive a caning from a prefect across the seat of his trousers. The scene is treated jocularly, with Rooney howling and shrieking in an unlikely manner.
- John Walker (ed.), Halliwell's Film & Video Guide, HarperCollins, 2000.
- The History of spanking in film
- Spanking in mainstream films
- Spanking on television
- A Yank at Eton on Wikipedia
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