Before the United States enters World War I, some American youths volunteer for the French military. Subsequently, they become the first U.S. fighter pilots and form a squadron known as the Lafayette Escadrille, whose exploits and heroism become the stuff of legend. This fictional version follows a laconic Texas rancher, an eager Nebraska kid, a Black boxer already in France, and a New York swell, as they arrive green for training, get their baptism by fire when German planes ambush them on their first mission, and graduate to heroics. Rawlings, the Texan, falls in love with a young woman he meets at a bordel. Written by
The light-weight Nieuport replicas were indeed grounded, but the full-size Sopwith 1 1/2 Strutter actually flew for the film. In the best Hollywood tradition, it played several parts with different "makeup" (water based paint) for each. The Sopwith is now at the Virginia Beach Military Aviation Museum and flies regularly. See more »
In many of the takes of the computer generated aircraft flying through thick smoke from the battlefield, the smoke is apparently not affected by the passing of the airplanes. Real airplanes flying through real smoke will leave a very visible turbulence behind. See more »
By the start of 1916, World War I had wreaked havoc across Europe. Over nine million people would eventually die.
Although the airplane had only recently been invented, it was quickly adapted into a war machine.
The young men who flew them became the first fighter pilots and a new kind of hero was born.
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How Ya Gunna Keep 'em Down on the Farm (After They've Seen Paree?)
Written by Walter Donaldson, Sam Lewis (as Samuel M. Lewis) and Joe Young (as Joseph Young)
Published by EMI Music Publishing Ltd.
Licensed by Sony BMG Commercial Markets UK See more »
Do not expect much from the plot as you need not scratch the surface too deeply to experience de'ja vu. (I've seen these plot elements before in just about every war/buddy/love story flick I have ever seen).
The acting is decent and the special effects are superb. Do not see this movie with high expectations regarding the plot and you will not be disappointed.
The effects wizards took a page from Howard Hughes as there are plenty of clouds in the air combat scenes to lend a feeling of depth and speed. The dog fights are pretty exciting and worth the price of admission to see on the big screen.
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