6.6/10
36,486
246 user 122 critic

Flyboys (2006)

The adventures of the Lafayette Escadrille, young Americans who volunteered for the French military before the U.S. entered World War I, and became the country's first fighter pilots.

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay), (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
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Popularity
4,126 ( 141)

On TV

Airs Sat. Mar. 25, 9:00 AM on TMC

ON DISC
2 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Scott Hazell ...
Mac McDonald ...
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...
Mr. Jensen
Karen Ford ...
Mrs. Jensen
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Abdul Salis ...
Jean-Philippe Écoffey ...
Skinner's trainer
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Mr. Lowry
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Gail Downey ...
Mrs. Lowry
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...
Augustin Legrand ...
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Storyline

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 <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Inspired by a true story


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for war action violence and some sexual content | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

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Language:

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Release Date:

22 September 2006 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Flyboys: Héroes del aire  »

Filming Locations:

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Box Office

Budget:

$60,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$6,004,219 (USA) (22 September 2006)

Gross:

$13,082,288 (USA) (15 December 2006)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

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Color:

(archive footage)|

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

James Franco earned his pilot's license in preparation for this film. See more »

Goofs

The gun turret atop the Zeppelin, as well as the gunner, are nowhere to be seen in the distance shots. They only appear in the close-ups. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Title Card: By the start of 1916, World War I had wreaked havoc across Europe. Over nine million people would eventually die.
Title Card: Although the airplane had only recently been invented, it was quickly adapted into a war machine.
Title Card: The young men who flew them became the first fighter pilots and a new kind of hero was born.
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Connections

Featured in Siskel & Ebert: The Worst of 2006 (2007) See more »

Soundtracks

Take Me Back to Dear Old Blighty
Written by A.J. Mills, Fred Godfrey and Bennett Scott
Published by EMI Music Publishing Ltd.
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User Reviews

 
The aerial combat was exciting, tense, and realistic
19 September 2006 | by (Memphis, Tennessee) – See all my reviews

(Synopsis) World War I began in Europe in 1914, but by 1917, the United States had still not entered the war. However, many brave young American men went to France to fly and fight for the Allied powers. They joined the Lafayette Escadrille fighter squadron. The Germans had better planes, weapons, and pilots. The average life expectancy for a fighter-pilot was three to six weeks. Why did these Americans volunteer to fight in France with certain death when their own country was not at war? This was a time when men were idealistic, but naive to embark on a great adventure. Blaine Rawlings (James Franco) was forced to leave his home in Arizona after the family ranch was foreclosed by the bank. Blaine sees a newsreel of fighter-pilots in France and decides that he has nothing to lose. Briggs Lowry (Tyler Labine) can't do anything right and is shamed into joining by his rich father. African-American boxer Eugene Skinner (Abdul Salis) had been living in France, a racially tolerant country, for many years, wanted to give something back to his new country. These Americans were under the command of French Captain Georges Thenault (Jean Reno) and American Squadron Leader Reed Cassidy (Martin Henderson). They were the world's first combat pilots.

(My Comment) The film was inspired by a true story. What that means is that the writers could write anything they wanted to about the pilots' personal lives. There were actually 38 American volunteers with an average age of 26 that joined the Lafayette Escadrille. Thirty were college educated and eleven were sons of millionaires. These men had a sense of adventure and romance of war, and they believed in "dying with honor." The movie uses a composite of these qualities of the actual pilots, and yes, there really was a black pilot in the squadron. The movie does not shy away from the real aspects of war or the sordid aspects of life on the ground. After every mission there are some pilots who do not return, and we get to see their replacements, and how the pilots deal with the loss of their friends. The aerial combat was exciting, tense, and realistic with the attack on the zeppelin being the best scene of the movie. There is a love story that slows the pace of the movie, and it was a little too long. You will love the scenes with Whiskey, their mascot lion. I think the writers could have used the real pilots' stories and names, and it would have been a better movie by giving credit to those young men. If you like war pictures this is a movie to see. (MGM Pictures, Run time 2:19, Rated PG-13)(8/10)


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