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Old 11-09-2019, 10:12 PM
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Default Midway Movie (2019)

I can thoroughly recommend the new 2019 movie Midway to those who are interested in the subject. I am a person who studies the subject. At this poin, I have read probably more than fifteen books on the subject including Gordon Prange's Miracle at Midway and the new monograph, Never Call Me a Hero by Jack Kleiss, a Dauntless pilot who flew in the battle and scored hits on two aircraft carriers that day and on a cruiser as well before the battle was over.

There was just enough human interest in the movie to make it human. There were some technical errors but there always are. The was a bunch of CGI but none of the stupid non-ballistic Star Wars movements that hampered Red Tails and many other CGI movies and the CGI was, frankly, believable. There was no sex. There were few invented characters.

I expect this movie will turn into a litmus test for viewers in that the movie makers seem to believe in real people who step up to the plate and do what has to be done. There's no nihilism, none of that "life's a ----- and then you die" crap. No love triangle. Just an attempt to portray the events accurately and in a way that maintains interest.

In my humble opinion it is worth your while and worth your money. I plan it add it to my collection.

Bob
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Last edited by Bob Womack; 11-11-2019 at 04:13 PM. Reason: Misspelled "Prange"
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Old 11-09-2019, 10:53 PM
jayhawk jayhawk is offline
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Bob

Thanks for the input. I love WW2 movies and especially WW2 aircraft movies. It is an area that I have spent years studying. When they first started advertising this I was worried it was another Michael Bay movie. Definitely have to put this on the ‘watch’ list.

Jack
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Old 11-10-2019, 07:49 AM
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Interesting I do like history based movies (as you note) depending on how they are handled . What circumstance did you view it under ? I have not seen it listed on Netflix yet.
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Old 11-10-2019, 08:03 AM
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Interesting I do like history based movies (as you note) depending on how they are handled . What circumstance did you view it under, theater ? I have not seen it listed on Netflix yet.
It is in Theaters. This is its' opening weekend. I think I'll go see it today.
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Old 11-10-2019, 08:06 AM
thomasinaz thomasinaz is offline
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My wife and me are going to see it today. Even though it's outside her usual genre, she suggested we should go see it. Hmmm... maybe a trade off for some chick flick she wants to see in the near future. Glad you liked it Bob, thanks for the recommendation.
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Old 11-10-2019, 08:30 AM
Alder Statesman Alder Statesman is offline
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The wife and I took this in Friday evening. Our first choice was JoJo Rabbit, but the distributors booked it in the worst theater in town. Wanting a pleasant evening rather than being treated like dirt, we took in Midway at the local Cinemark.

What an excellent film! I have a lot of trivia locked in the recesses of my brain regarding the Pacific Theater during WWII. This film touches on so many of them including how the Chinese suffered as a result of assisting American flyers after the Doolittle Raid and the cold-blooded killing of American aviators who were captured.

The air and naval combat sequences are absolutely some of the best, if not the best, in cinematic history. They were intense, but we did not get the R-rated mangling of bodies in battle. This film is safe for teenagers interested in history, assuming you can find some.

Perhaps the biggest surprise is the lack of attention to fighter pilots. The sea battles focus on Dauntless dive bombers supported by Avenger torpedo planes.

A great film to celebrate Veterans’ Day.

Last edited by Alder Statesman; 11-10-2019 at 08:49 AM.
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Old 11-10-2019, 08:33 AM
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Originally Posted by KevWind View Post
Interesting I do like history based movies (as you note) depending on how they are handled . What circumstance did you view it under, theater ? I have not seen it listed on Netflix yet.
Yep, theater. This is its premier weekend. I went to a theater equipped with recliners and served with individual seat reservations. This is also a Navy town so I spent the afternoon at a Navy museum with a WWII Iowa-class battleship (USS Wisconsin) tied up alongside to get in the mood.

Bob
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Old 11-10-2019, 08:39 AM
Bikewer Bikewer is offline
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Interesting to see positive reviews.

I’ve only watched the trailer, and it seemed a typical god-awful depiction of air combat as we saw in the dreadful “Pearl Harbor”.

Dogfighting Dauntless dive-bombers? On-the-deck strafing of enemy ships?

Maybe they just chose a few unfortunate bits for the trailer.
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Old 11-10-2019, 09:42 AM
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Interesting to see positive reviews.
I’ve only watched the trailer, and it seemed a typical god-awful depiction of air combat as we saw in the dreadful “Pearl Harbor”.
Dogfighting Dauntless dive-bombers? On-the-deck strafing of enemy ships?
Maybe they just chose a few unfortunate bits for the trailer.
The Douglas SBD Dauntless was equipped with two forward-firing Browning M2 .50 cal. machine guns synchronized to fire through the propeller. They were intended to be used for either defensive or offensive fire. There were many historical instances of Dauntless bomber crews protecting themselves by defensive dogfighting. It was, in fact, typical and expected for the dive bomber crews to strafe ships that they passed over at the end of their hair-raising 19,000 foot dive. Lt. Jack Kleiss does, in fact record holding his dive on the Hiryu until his pull-out put him at wave-top height. The action in the trailer that shows Dick Best in combat going vertical, pulling back his throttle, and falling off on a wing, accompanied by a star-wars chop-chop slow-down sound, was only for the trailer. He was portrayed doing that in training without the futuristic sound. The Dick Best "flying down the flight deck of the Hiryu before releasing his bomb at the bow" scene was inaccurate in both technique and historical fact. Lt. Jack Kleiss was the pilot who dropped on the bow of the Hiryu with the resultant explosion 'curling up the front edge of the flight deck like a taco.'

There is also a scene at the beginning where Dick Best does a dead-stick, flapless landing on the Enterprise. The event was portrayed with far too high an angle of attack but with proper opposing stick and rudder technique. The point in all of this was to show Best's character change from being a hot dog at the beginning to a responsible leader during the battle.

The actions of aircraftsman Bruno Gaido, portrayed by Nick Jonas, might be considered by some to be over the top and unrealistic. However, a little historical study reveals that he did, in fact, jump in the gunner's position of an SBD sitting on the flight deck while the Enterprise was being attacked by a kamikaze in February 1942. He did, in fact, single-handedly shoot down the kamikaze. The kamikaze did, in fact, pass through Gaido's plane and cut it in half as he was shooting and then went over the side of the flight deck. Gaido then grabbed a fire extinguisher and calmly put out the fire coming from his plane. He then he went below decks to hide because he knew he had abandoned his action station in order to jump in the plane and shoot (not portrayed). He was, in fact, promoted on the spot by Bull Halsey.

So yes, there are inaccuracies of execution but not of result. Some things are pushed a little over the top but many of the things portrayed actually happened.

Bob
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Last edited by Bob Womack; 11-11-2019 at 04:15 PM.
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Old 11-10-2019, 09:56 AM
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OK thanks guys
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Old 11-10-2019, 10:04 AM
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I saw the movie Friday night and enjoyed it. I too am a student of the Battle of Midway and agree with some glaring inaccuracies. Still worth seeing though.

Interesting to know that Hollywood flatly turned down all requests to make this movie.

The Chinese then stepped in and funded the whole thing. You will note at the end that strong mention is made about the Japanese executing over 250,000 Chinese civilians in return for them helping the Doolittle Raiders escape.

Between 1970 to 1991 I often flew my USAF C-141 out to Midway Island on resupply missions . Each time I was truly moved by what went down there in WWII. The old corrugated metal hanger there is still in use and sports bullet holes made during the Japanese attack.

I should note that at Hickam AFB (Honolulu) several of the buildings still have bullet holes from the strafing that went on in the Dec 7, 1941 attack. They have been left there purposely to remind people of what went down there. A close friend of mine was 8 years old and walking down the beach near Pearl Harbor with his dad (a local dentist) that Sunday morning. They were strafed but fortunately the bullets missed. He remembers it vividly to this day.

Last edited by 6L6; 11-10-2019 at 10:12 AM.
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Old 11-10-2019, 11:24 AM
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We visited the Midway in San Diego on Thursday and saw the movie on Friday. If you visit San Diego the Midway is a must see. The movie is also a must see and get out to your local theater as the experience is there. I cut Hollywood some slack on history because they are looking to entertain. This Midway is better than the 1976 version but seems a touch quieter. Go see it
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Old 11-10-2019, 12:08 PM
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Yay! A movie that is actually worth going to the theater to see. Can't wait!
Thanks for the heads up.

scott
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Old 11-10-2019, 12:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tahitijack View Post
We visited the Midway in San Diego on Thursday and saw the movie on Friday. If you visit San Diego the Midway is a must see. The movie is also a must see and get out to your local theater as the experience is there. I cut Hollywood some slack on history because they are looking to entertain. This Midway is better than the 1976 version but seems a touch quieter. Go see it
In 2009, I was in San Diego on business for a week. The tech company hosting the conference I was attending actually booked the USS Midway for an evening private party for all attending the conference, a few hundred max., but not all attended. We were hosted by veteran volunteers who escorted us to the nether-reaches of the carrier. Incredible! At one point, I think I was the only one on the flight deck checking out all the vintage aircraft positioned there. Another incredible. A dinner was setup in the expansive open hanger deck and a terrific blues band played until quite late. Yet another incredible! That whole experience is emblazoned in my mind. Can’t say that I’m a real war buff, but I sure do want to see this film.
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Old 11-10-2019, 09:44 PM
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So I’m curious, do the depict the torpedo attack on the Japanese fleet by Martin B-26’s? Only AAF bombers ever equipt with torpedoes. Only AAF torpedo attack.

It was a failure of a mission. But still a great story. That plane was the short wingspan B-26 which could have been capable of a 400 mph attack for something like a skip bomb attack as opposed to a very slow torpedo attack. The planes escaped the fleet with over 50 Zeros in pursuit. They crash landed back at Midway and one of the planes had over 180 bullet and Flak homes from that single mission. I believe the commander was awarded the DSC for the mission.

It would be fun to see that depicted.

Jack
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