7.5/10
2,539
42 user 22 critic

The Dawn Patrol (1938)

Not Rated | | War, Drama | 24 December 1938 (USA)
British flying aces in World War I contend with the harsh realities of war.

Director:

Edmund Goulding

Writers:

Seton I. Miller (screen play), Dan Totheroh (screen play) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Errol Flynn ... Courtney
Basil Rathbone ... Major Brand
David Niven ... Scott
Donald Crisp ... Phipps
Melville Cooper ... Sgt. Watkins
Barry Fitzgerald ... Bott
Carl Esmond ... Hauptmann Von Mueller
Peter Willes Peter Willes ... Hollister
Morton Lowry ... Donnie Scott
Michael Brooke Michael Brooke ... Capt. Squires
James Burke ... Flaherty
Stuart Hall ... Bentham
Herbert Evans ... Mechanic
Sidney Bracey ... Major Brand's Orderly (as Sidney Bracy)
Leo Nomis Leo Nomis ... Aeronautic Supervisor
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Storyline

In 1915 France, Major Brand commands the 39th Squadron of the Royal Flying Corps. The young airmen go up in bullet-riddled "crates" and the casualty rate is appalling, but Brand can't make the "brass hats" at headquarters see reason. Insubordinate air ace Captain Courtney is another thorn in Brand's side...but finds the smile wiped from his face when he rises to command the squadron himself. Everyone keeps a stiff upper lip. Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

They roared through the dawn . . . with death on their wings ! See more »

Genres:

War | Drama

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | German

Release Date:

24 December 1938 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A Patrulha da Alvorada See more »

Filming Locations:

Calabasas, California, USA

Company Credits

Production Co:

Warner Bros. See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

There was a real 59th Squadron (referred to as No. 59 Squadron) in the Royal Flying Corps during the Great War. Formed in 1916, it was deployed to France in 1917, flying R.E.8s (not the Nieuports seen in the film). The R.E.8 was a two-seater bombing reconnaissance aircraft. See more »

Goofs

During the final mission by Errol Flynn, four German planes take off to pursue him. However, one plane simply disappears. There are only three planes that attack him. He shoots down two, including Von Richter, but is killed by the third. See more »

Quotes

Phipps: [Opens package dropped by enemy plane] It's his helmet and goggles. It means a very gallant gentleman died this afternoon. And for what? What have all these deaths accomplished? So many fine chaps have died in this war and are going to die in future wars.
[pause]
Phipps: That's all, gentlemen.
See more »

Connections

Spoofed in Movie Movie (1978) See more »

Soundtracks

Plum and Apple
(uncredited)
Traditional
Sung a cappella by Errol Flynn, David Niven and James Burke
See more »

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User Reviews

 
surprisingly engaging.....
14 May 2002 | by tripper0See all my reviews

I don't have a lot to say about this movie. Errol Flynn is excellent as Captain Courtney, and the rest of the cast is excellent in their roles. That didn't surprise me. What surprised me was two things. First, how the British flying aces in World War I contend with the harsh realities of war, specifically the deaths of their friends and the decisions that had to be made to send more men to their deaths (excellently portrayed by Basil Rathbone as Major Brand). Whats most impressive, however, is how engaging the air sequences were. They were ahead of their time and they hold up rather well today. I just saw Pearl Harbour, and I would say the Dawn Patrol is more exciting. It holds up well today, and if you get a chance, give it a watch. 8 out of 10.


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