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Best & Worst Mil Aviation Film and Why

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Best & Worst Mil Aviation Film and Why

Old 29th Nov 2007, 00:30
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Best & Worst Mil Aviation Film and Why

Dambusters & Peal Harbour

Dambusters a well directed and acted flim which bore good reflection to a heroic tale.

Pearl Harbour a well filmed piece which fell down with the portrayal of the USA winning the Battle of Britain, much like U-571 distorting history for Hollywood purpo$e$
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Old 29th Nov 2007, 01:55
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Pearl Harbor was a hideous remake of Tora! Tora! Tora! which imo is excellent.
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Old 29th Nov 2007, 03:57
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'Pearl Harbour' holds a special place somewhere or other for me. It is the only war-ie aeroplane (or should that be 'airplane'?) movie I have ever sat down to and given up five minutes into the battle scenes, which were so badly CGI-ed, they were almost as bad as the Godawful script and appallingly shallow characterisations.

I thought I might put up with it for a while if I could get a few more long lingering looks at young Kate in her overtight nurse's uniform or that great floral number she wore in the movie trailer, but the rest of the movie was so bad, I even 'forewent' that pleasure. The DVD has sat, unwatched and never likely to be watched, somewhere on my shelf since then.

How did the movie end - can I assume the bloke with the ten thousand hour 'bash' in his hat and the Rayban sunglasses shot down so many Japanese aircraft with the endless supply of .50 cal his trusty P40 was carrying that we now know why the Japanese cancelled their second wave - there simply weren't enough aircraft got back to the carriers to mount the second raid?

There may be a worse aviation war-ie flick out there somewhere - (Did Erroyl Flynn ever do a flying war-ie? God, I hope not.) - but I think you'd be hard-pressed to find one.

Best? I haven't given it a lot of thought, but given how soon after the war it was made, and how the producers still needed to tread lightly on the sensitivities of many wartime USAAF people who were still around, I thought the Yanks did an admirable job with Gregory Peck's '12 O'Clock High'.

Both probably wouldn't translate well to film, but I'd love to see someone make an attempt to make a film of Len Deighton's (fictional) 'Bomber', and perhaps even moreso, John Beede's true to life 'They Hosed Them Out', a warts and all story of the life of an RAF tail gunner. (Do yourself an enormous favour and get your hands on the book - It's recently been re-released under the new title, 'Rear Gunner'. http://www.biblioz.com/main.php?acti...76679&record=2 Written in the early 1950's, it ain't a pretty picture of the RAF that he paints.)
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Old 29th Nov 2007, 05:38
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Did Erroyl Flynn ever do a flying war-ie? God, I hope not
Dawn Patrol (1938) with Basil Rathbone and David Niven. One of his best efforts and not a female appearing on screen.
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Old 29th Nov 2007, 06:40
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"Dr FOD and the Wayward Body" - had a couple of very nice points in it.....

Worst films? Anything with totally unrealistic CGI in it.
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Old 29th Nov 2007, 07:21
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Ah yes!

But only one I can think of was an Oscar winner...
The incomparable....

(In fairness, it was Oscar for "Best Song" but anyway.....)
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Old 29th Nov 2007, 07:22
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Old 29th Nov 2007, 08:09
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I'd go with Top Gun as the best aviation movie ever, if only for (1) the authentic dialogue - 'I'm in a flat spin, heading out to sea' - and (2) for Kelly McGuiles (sorry if the spelling is wrong here) who has lovely legs. Did I mention the dialogue?

12O'clock High was a good movie for its day. They used it as a teaching aid when I did OT. Most things were in black and white then, so it didn't look dated.
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Old 29th Nov 2007, 08:39
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Worst, remember the ones with the cloud background on a moving backdrop? Wasn't there one with someone walking passed?

I know there was a Morcombe and Wise sketch of that scene.

Was it the worst or the funniest?

I agree about Pearl Harbor now I saw Tora Tora Tora with its embedded subtitles and additional subtitles in Greek!

Last edited by Wader2; 29th Nov 2007 at 09:28.
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Old 29th Nov 2007, 09:24
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For one of the best how about Kenneth Mores portrayal of Douglas Badar in 'Reach for the Sky' (it won a BAFTA for best British film 1956).

Pearl Harbour.....enough said already
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Old 29th Nov 2007, 09:31
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Best film?

'BAT 21' (Gene Hackman, Danny Glover) was a pretty good effort, I thought.
Also Mel Gibson's 'We were Soldiers Once' (Air Cavalry - definitely Air related!) ranks pretty highly for me despite what some might say (yes I have read the book and yes I know the film isn't totally true to the real events but it's still bl00dy good!).
Honorary mention must also go to 'Hot Shots'. An absolutely legendary piece of film-making and probably quoted more on a daily basis than the eponimous 'Top Gun'.
Officer and a Gentleman? The list could go on.
Worst film.....
.....hmm, I'll have to give that one some thought and get back to you!
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Old 29th Nov 2007, 09:33
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"From Hell to Victory", starring the incomparable George Peppard. If there's a category for "So bad it's good", this would be the winner. You name it, it's got it, but very badly. A must-see for all aviation type persons.
I never saw Pearl Harbour, because it's in the category Americanbasedonatrueevent. In this case - There was a war. ......... The Americans won. Fill in the dots with anything you like.
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Old 29th Nov 2007, 09:52
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Len Deighton's 'Bomber' was done as a Radio play, a good effort but not a patch on the book. The play tried too hard to separate the 'toff officers' from the 'salt of the earth' NCO aircrew, & to introduce a post war guilt appraisal of the bombing effort through FS Lambert's questioning of targeting.

Not strictly a flying film, but flying related - David Niven in 'A Matter of Life & Death'. Same chap, with Errol Flynn, in the superb 'Dawn Patrol'. What about the 'Battle of Britain'? Great flying sequences, tremendous score (music, not how many we shot down in the film!), the greatest collection of WW2 aircraft for any post war film (at the time it amounted to the sixteenth largest air force in the world I believe!) & not a bit of CGI. Saw it at the cinema in 1970, wanted to fly from that moment on! 'The Sound Barrier' saw us going supersonic before the Yanks, or so many of the viewing public over there believed, & we did it by 'reversing the controls'! - classic. I enjoyed 'Memphis Belle' too, for once a story correctly populated by an all American cast. '633 Squadron' just for all those Mosquitos, likewise 'Mosquito Squadron', although both lost it on the ground. Enjoyed 'The Blue Max' too.

On the bad side, any of the 'Airport' series, especially 'Concorde' - seeing off the F4 by barrel rolling whilst firing a flare gun out of the open DV window to decoy the missiles! Hope no one in MOD sees that & develops a 'new' DAS suite for us! I never watched 'Pearl Harbour', put off by the trailers & the reviews so can't really judge that one. I enjoyed 'Top Gun' when it came out by it's way too corny & just too gay with hindsight.
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Old 29th Nov 2007, 09:58
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Best - Top Gun, it's cheesy but still very cool, with some great flying shots, oh and a Gpz 900.

Worst - Pearl harbour, oh and wasn't there a complete hash of a Biggles film in the 80's?
Old 29th Nov 2007, 10:05
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Smile Best Factual Film

The Arrow made in 2000 staring Dan Aykroyd. That aircraft would of been a worldbeater. Great film and also a great aircraft. Still have my copy on video - never seen the film released on TV...!!!!
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Old 29th Nov 2007, 10:09
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I think ' rear gunner ' must be one of Graham Norton's efforts, so won't be bothering with that one...
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Old 29th Nov 2007, 10:38
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633 Squadron gets a thumbs up from me, and Pearl Harbour IS truly pants!
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Old 29th Nov 2007, 10:42
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Originally Posted by AngryDave
Surprised no one else has mentioned Battle of Britain. An all star cast, a bit of everything, well grounded in hisorical fact and some stirring music.
I was just about to.

'Battle of Britain' is number one for me without a doubt.

As an obscure alternative, and better than Top Gun, I'd say 'The Hunters', with Robert Mitchum and Robert Wagner, great late 50's colour film about F-86 Sabre pilots in the Korean War.

Worst......not seen Pearl Harbour, didn't want to then still don't want to now, so has to be worst then.
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Old 29th Nov 2007, 10:43
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I think you will find that Mr Flynn "starred" in "A Yank in the RAF" circa 1940 when he won the B of B before setting off to liberate Burma.
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Old 29th Nov 2007, 10:48
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Strategic Air Command with Jimmy Stewart.
Magestic sequence of B-36 at altitude with appropriate lilting music.
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