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Eye in the Sky - Alan Rickman's Brevet.

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Eye in the Sky - Alan Rickman's Brevet.

Old 24th Apr 2016, 15:46
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Eye in the Sky - Alan Rickman's Brevet.

Can anyone more learned than me identify Alan Rickman's brevet in the film "Eye in the Sky"? Despite reasonable military general knowledge, the insignia, and location was not one I'm familiar with. I did suspect a production error, but thought it a bit of an obvious mistake to make.

image.jpeg
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Old 24th Apr 2016, 16:05
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British Army Parachute Wings Qualification Badge - it should be worn on the sleeve.
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Old 24th Apr 2016, 17:34
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It looks like a gold wire mess kit version to me.

The Rhodesians used to have an arrangement where someone who had distinguished themselves in action wore their wings above their left breast pocket - WOC - Wings on Chest.

Is Rickman Army in this film or Royal Marines?

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Old 24th Apr 2016, 17:39
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He's a lieutenent general in the Army. I've never seen anyone in the UK Armed Forces wear parachute wings on their breast.
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Old 24th Apr 2016, 17:58
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Usual media artistic licence, aka getting it wrong. Mess kit / ceremonial wings rather than the regular uniform wings and incorrectly placed. Only time I have ever seen UK para wings worn there are in old photos of SAS personnel in WW2.

Makes you wonder how much artistic licence has been taken with the rest of the film.
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Old 24th Apr 2016, 18:55
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It makes total sense for it to be on the arm as a Pilot or any form of aircrew could also be qualified paras and you would then have a conflict as to where to place it with their other wings.


More

http://www.arrse.co.uk/community/thr....237659/page-4
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Old 24th Apr 2016, 20:31
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As realistic, in fact, as a lieutenant rpv pilot disobeying an order from a full colonel? Apart from that, a good movie imho.
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Old 24th Apr 2016, 21:44
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Early on in the formation of the Parachute Regiment, as whole Battalions were re-roled, Para Wings were worn on the left breast, before anyone calls "utter tosh" I have a phot of my father, Royal Sussex, who was re-roled in this form of dress.
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Old 24th Apr 2016, 22:32
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I have seen photographs of the tropical uniform worn by Lt Col B.K.Blount who was a member of SOE. His para wings are mounted above the right breast pocket, which I have never seen before. I have also seen pictures of other SOE personnel with para wings more conventionally worn above the left breast pocket. However, as in the case of WW2 SAS and early parachute regiment personnel mentioned above I think this practice was restricted to the early days of airborne formations, and certainly British para wings are nowadays always worn on the sleeve.

I understand the film was shot in South Africa. Do SA paras wear their wings on the breast, American style? If so that may explain the error
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Old 24th Apr 2016, 22:35
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Originally Posted by Sloppy Link View Post
Early on in the formation of the Parachute Regiment, as whole Battalions were re-roled, Para Wings were worn on the left breast, before anyone calls "utter tosh" I have a phot of my father, Royal Sussex, who was re-roled in this form of dress.
Historically, as I noted, some units did wear them on the left breast - my grandfather who served in 2 Para wore them on his sleeve as we do now. But the OP was asking about current order of dress being depicted in this film. And based on current orders of dress, the film is incorrect. Of course, it also assumes Rickman's character had served on an airborne unit, other wise he would have only been entitled to wear the 'light bulb' rather than full on para wings if all he had done was to complete the 'Jumps Course'. But that's another argument, and if you mentioned that on Arrse it'd be like sticking your head in the lion's mouth, so I'd steer clear ... I'm sure that nobody would wear the incorrect Parachutist Badge just to try and gain a bit more credibility!
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Old 24th Apr 2016, 22:41
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The wings worn by Alan Rickman in the op picture are No1 dress Para Regt wings. AR is playing a British Army Lt. General who is based in London and is clearly wearing No2 dress. In this day and age, the time setting of the film, para wings are worn on the right upper arm sleeve.

On the other hand, they could represent the Light Infantry (Skirmishers) para wings, however, they are also worn on the sleeve.

Para Wings can only be worn if you have qualified and have served in a unit where you could be expected to use your para qualification, otherwise it's just the lightbulb with no wings.



Last edited by SilsoeSid; 24th Apr 2016 at 23:18.
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Old 24th Apr 2016, 22:42
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When I was in the Regiment, four new pilot officers fresh from Cranwell arrived at Catterick having done the "jumps course" as referred to by Melchett. All wore the full "operational" para wings on their sleeves, which was much commented upon. It was obviously incorrect, but somebody has issued them with these wings, so they carried on wearing them. One was still wearing them when he retired as a wing commander, as far as I am aware!
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Old 25th Apr 2016, 06:26
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Not seen the film yet, but from the context of the posts here, it could be that Rickman's character has made an operational descent - the protocol for people who do that is that they are authorised to wear their para wings on the left breast instead of the right shoulder.

Obviously we don't see many of those these days but it was commonplace during WW2.

If Rickman's character is ex-Special Forces, they tend to put up the basic jump wings instead of SF ones on uniform to avoid drawing undue attention to themselves.
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Old 25th Apr 2016, 07:41
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From AARSE

""During WWII many airborne soldiers were given permission by their CO to wear 'Wings on Chest' this unofficial accolade was normally granted for operational jumps (in SOE this was normally granted after one operational jump). In the Airborne, RSR and SAS at the CO's discretion. At an investiture King George VI asked a couple of SAS Sgts if they were pilots - no sir came the reply we're in the SAS. The King ruled that only the RAF and Army aircrew could wear their brevets on the chest. This resulted in a long wrangle between the airborne, SAS, the War Office and the Palace - with Montgomery lining up with the Airborne Forces, after a long time there were perhaps half a dozen serving wartime SAS members who were allowed to carry on with the practice. In the 1970s in Rhodesia the Rhodesian SAS reinstated the practice of Wings on Chest (WOC) an honour that was valued more than some of the medals."

Wings on Chest - Airborne - WW2 Talk
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Old 25th Apr 2016, 10:33
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Sub machine gun marksman badge lol, I bet no one ever got that with the Sterling.. The only people that I have ever seen hit anything at any distance with that weapon was the Star Wars Stormtroopers.

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Old 25th Apr 2016, 12:18
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It's a film, it's not real...
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Old 25th Apr 2016, 13:31
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Subsunk;
Not seen the film yet, but from the context of the posts here, it could be that Rickman's character has made an operational descent - the protocol for people who do that is that they are authorised to wear their para wings on the left breast instead of the right shoulder.

Obviously we don't see many of those these days but it was commonplace during WW2.

If Rickman's character is ex-Special Forces, they tend to put up the basic jump wings instead of SF ones on uniform to avoid drawing undue attention to themselves
Utter tosh on all three accounts!

It took a number of operational jumps to be entitled to wear the wings on the chest.
It was not commonplace as operational jumps weren't that common.
It's not a 'tendency' at all.



However, elsewhere;



Captain M.E. Anderson, SAS Wings, South African Pilot wings, member of the SBS
SAS SA SBS Pilot - Great Britain: Militaria: Badges, Uniforms & Equipment - Gentleman's Military Interest Club
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Old 25th Apr 2016, 13:32
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Besides, rather than discuss the rights and wrongs of a film's costume department, howabout this one;

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Old 25th Apr 2016, 16:50
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Still space below his right shoulder for something shiny..........
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Old 25th Apr 2016, 19:18
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I recall Nietzsche once commenting on dress regulations thusly; "There are no facts, only interpretations."
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