Category:Documentary films about military aviation
Pages in category "Documentary films about military aviation"
The following 54 pages are in this category, out of 54 total, this list may not reflect recent changes (learn more).
The following 54 pages are in this category, out of 54 total, this list may not reflect recent changes (learn more).
1. Banshees Over Canada – Banshees Over Canada is a 19-minute 1943 Canadian documentary film, made by the National Film Board of Canada. The film was produced by Sydney Newman and directed by James Beveridge, the films Canadian French title was Vautours au-dessus du Canada. It was produced as part of the Canada Carries On series, British preparations for a German bombing raid are examined, as well as the resultant destruction caused by the raid and the defences mounted by Britains Royal Air Force. Canadian preparations for air defence, should the country be attacked during the then-current Second World War is also highlighted, typical of the NFBs Canada Carries On series of documentary short films, Banshees Over Canada relied heavily on newsreel footage. The British sequences were from the British Ministry of Information, the later sequences of air-raid and civil defence preparations in Canada were primarily filmed in British Columbia. Vancouver Motion Pictures was responsible for the B. C. footage, the locally owned production company produced a number of NFB titles during the 1940s. The deep baritone voice of stage actor Lorne Greene was featured in the narration of Banshees Over Canada, as part of the Canada Carries On series, Banshees Over Canada was produced in 35 mm for the theatrical market. Each film was shown over a period as part of the shorts or newsreel segments in approximately 800 theatres across Canada. The NFB had an arrangement with Famous Players theatres to ensure that Canadians from coast-to-coast could see them, with further distribution by Columbia Pictures. After the six-month theatrical tour ended, individual films were available on 16 mm to schools, libraries, churches and factories. They were also available to film libraries operated by university. A total of 199 films were produced before the series was canceled in 1959, watch Banshees Over Canada at NFB. ca. Banshees Over Canada at the Internet Movie Database
2. The Battle of Britain – The Battle of Britain was the fourth of Frank Capras Why We Fight series of seven propaganda films, which made the case for fighting and winning the Second World War. It was released in 1943 and concentrated on the German bombardment of the United Kingdom in anticipation of Operation Sea Lion, the narrator describes the fall of France, leaving Britain almost defenceless. British forces are outnumbered, but the British people are calm. The narrator explains that this is because in a democracy the people as a whole are involved in the decision to fight, hitlers masterplan to subjugate Britain is described. Hitler begins by attacking convoys and ports, but fails to destroy them, the RAF are outnumbered 6 -8 -10 to one, but knock out far more planes than the Germans do. Bailed out British pilots are able to return to the air. Unlike the Dutch and Polish airforce Britain does not make the mistake of bunching its planes on the runways, losses force Hitler to take time out. He tells Goering to change tactics, so the Luftwaffe attack factories, Britain deploys improved listening posts to identify coming attacks. In August and September German losses are far more severe, however the German mind cannot understand why free people fight on against overwhelming odds. The Nazis now aim to crush the British spirit by attacking London, destroying homes, hospitals, but the people adapt and survive. Enraged, Goering takes personal command, sending a massive attack on September 15, in the battle the Germans suffer severe losses. Despite many losses, and destruction of buildings, the Germans cannot break Britain. They switch to night attacks, hoping to terrorise the people, but the people show great resilience. The British also counter-attack, bombing key German factories, Hitler takes revenge by destroying Coventry. After a brief respite at Christmas Hitler sends fire bombs to London, more bombings and firestorms are created, but Britains defences hold up, giving a year of precious time to other countries threatened by the Nazis. The film ends with Winston Churchills statement that never in the field of conflict has so much been owed by so many to so few. The episode has been criticized for anti-Polish bias, the bias is a result of propaganda justifying the Western Allies alliance with the Soviets, as the Soviets had to be portrayed as the good guys. The Allies who were unsympathetic towards the Soviet Union, such as the Poles, were misportrayed or simply ignored, participation from Polish pilots from No.303 Polish Fighter Squadron and other units was widely publicized in Britain at the time this propaganda piece was filmed
3. The Battle of Midway (film) – The Battle of Midway is a 1942 American documentary film short directed by John Ford. It is a montage of footage of the Battle of Midway with voice overs of various narrators, including Johnny Governali, Donald Crisp, Henry Fonda. The film begins with a narrator explaining where Midway Island is. About five minutes into the film the format changes somewhat, with more pictures of the G. I. s at work on the island. The female voice over takes the personality of an aged woman from Springfield, Ohio. The boy is Army Air Force pilot William E, then stock footage of the Kinney family back home is introduced. Abruptly the narrative turns to the battle itself with approximately five minutes dedicated to the defense of the island, the battle. At the end the various known Japanese losses are shown and then brushed over with red paint, two days before the battle, he learned that the Japanese planned to attack the base and that it was preparing to defend itself. Fords handheld, 16mm footage of the battle was captured totally impromptu and he had been in transit on the island, roused from his bunk by the sounds of the battle, and started filming. Ford was wounded by fire while filming the battle. And Kenneth Pier assisted Ford in filming, Ford was worried that military censors would prevent the footage from being shown in public. After returning to Los Angeles he gave the footage to Robert Parrish, Parrish wrote an in-depth account of the making of The Battle of Midway in his autobiography, Growing Up in Hollywood. The film runs for 18 minutes, was distributed by 20th Century Fox, seeing men he had met and filmed die horrified Ford, who said I am really a coward compared to those who fought. He had spent time with Torpedo Squadron 8, and 29 of 30 men of the unit died or were missing after the battle and he printed the result, Torpedo Squadron 8, to 8mm film suitable for home projectors and sent copies to the mens families. The Academy Film Archive preserved The Battle of Midway in 2006, the film is part of the Academy War Film Collection, one of the largest collections of World War II era short films held outside government archives
4. Birth of a Giant – The title is an acknowledgement, that at the time, the Argus was the largest aircraft ever built in Canada. In 1954, the RCAF issues specifications for a new maritime patrol, in order to comply with the RCAFs requirements, the Canadair aircraft company in Montreal, begins a re-design of the Bristol Britannia airliner. A prototype of the giant aircraft begins to take shape alongside the aircraft in production at the Canadair factory. As each individual component is designed and tested, the given the company designation, CL-28. Many of the parts are sent to sub-contractors who have to meet stringent timelines. As problems arise, computer analysis is available to provide solutions, all through the construction process, representatives of the RCAF check the engineering mock-up as well as the first prototype Argus to ensure that the finished product meets their needs. When the prototype emerges from the bay on day 175. Company test pilots successfully carry out the flight, the start of a lengthy period of testing. After years of planning, design and construction, the first Argus is accepted by the RCAF, Birth of a Giant was part of the NFBs series of documentary short films for the CBC TV series Perspective that ran from 1956–58. Each half-hour program, produced by the National Film Board included both documentaries and dramatic productions, most episodes concerned contemporary issues in Canada, although several involved international incidents or topics such as life in Haiti. A small number of the Perspective series were historical reconstructions, generals Wolfe and Montcalm at the Battle of the Plains of Abraham was one example. A close working relationship with Canadair allowed the NFB to chronicle the development of the Argus. Many of the key staff in the company played their parts as themselves, while the aircraft went through its period from 1954 to rollout in 1956. The aerial sequences included footage shot from accompanying aircraft as well as from inside the Argus as it went through its paces during testing. Birth of a Giant was primarily made-for-television, but after broadcast on November 24,1957 on the CBC, was available on 16 mm, to schools, libraries. The film was made available to film libraries operated by university. Excepts from Birth of a Giant appeared in other NFB productions, although available from the National Film Board either online or as a DVD, Birth of a Giant is now largely forgotten. A recent analysis emphasized the value of the film
5. Canada's Air Defence – Canadas Air Defence is a 33-minute 1957 Canadian documentary film produced by the National Film Board of Canada for the Royal Canadian Air Force. The film depicts the role of air defence over Canada and the United States by following the training, in 1956, No.433 Porcupine RCAF Squadron flies the Avro Canada CF-100 Canuck all-weather interceptor aircraft. The squadron is based at CFB North Bay, Ontario, and is responsible for an area that includes the immediate region and the Arctic. On a deployment to CFB Cold Lake, Alberta, where training for RCAF operational units takes place, experienced flight crews, the work of the ground control and radar units that support the squadron are highlighted in a combat readiness exercise. During the Cold War, the Soviet threat of attack on North America was countered by both the United States and Canada. Air defence was based on stations, staffed with American and Canadian personnel. The further operational aspects of air defence in North America that even included ground observers called the RCAF Ground Observer Corps, was detailed, typical of the NFBs series of short training films for the RCAF, Canadas Air Defence relied heavily on military assistance in obtaining footage. The film incorporated footage shot in 1956 at bases where No.433 All-Weather Squadron operated, after the Second World War, the squadron, originally a heavy bomber squadron in Europe, reformed as a fighter squadron at Cold Lake, Alberta, on November 15,1954. A move to North Bay, Ontario, came in October 1955, the aerial sequences included footage shot from accompanying CF-100s and featured five-plane formation flying. Additional footage of rocket firing at the CFB Cold Lake, Alberta, a Royal Air Force Vickers Valiant bomber is also briefly seen in the film. Canadas Air Defence was primarily a training film, produced as part of the NFBs newsreel programs. Each film in NFBs catalogue was available on 16 mm, to schools, libraries. They were also available to film libraries operated by university. Canadas Air Defence was later edited into R. C. A. F, although available from the National Film Board either online or as a DVD, Canadas Air Defence is now largely forgotten. A recent analysis emphasized the value of the film. From a strictly cinematic viewpoint, it must be admitted that its age is showing, the style of the film with its wooden ‘acting’ and patriotic theme is in keeping with its generation. That is some ways what makes it so interesting, it’s a time capsule from the past, notes Citations Bibliography Canadas Air Defence at the Internet Movie Database Watch Canadas Air Defence at NFB. ca
6. Carrier (documentary) – Carrier is a PBS documentary television series about the six-month deployment of the United States Navy aircraft carrier USS Nimitz in 2005 from the United States to the Middle East and back. There are ten Carrier episodes, and the series is supplemented by a 90-minute companion documentary film called Another Day in Paradise. This character-driven, dramatic non-fiction series includes extensive footage shot aboard as well as interviews with many of the crew about their various experiences, personal concerns and fears. During the deployment, the Nimitz makes stops in Pearl Harbor, Hong Kong, Guam, Kuala Lumpur, Bahrain, the miniseries was produced by Icon Productions and Carrier Project, Inc. It was co-created by Mitchell Block and Maro Chermayeff, and directed by Chermayeff, the executive producers were Block and Chermayeff for Carrier Project, Inc. and Mel Gibson, Bruce Davey and Nancy Cotton, for Icon Productions. Seventeen filmmakers, including producers Deborah Dickson and Jeff Dupre as well as field producers Matthew Akers, Michelle Smawley and Pamela Yates, shot 1,600 hours of footage to create the series. The series and its companion film were the first documentaries to ever be produced on a U. S. Naval warship on active duty over an entire mission and this was accomplished by David Kennedy and Block who spent two years obtaining permission to embed on the Nimitz. A 26-minute preview of the series was aired by PBS on April 13,2008, the ten 60-minute episodes began airing on April 27,2008 with two episodes being shown each night for five straight nights. All episodes were directed by Chermayeff and this 90-minute film was created from the same pool of footage used for the series. It covers many of the themes touched on in the series. Not only are all three connected by the fact that they are serving on board the ship, they are all also struggling with various family issues. The film was released in the U. S. on June 16,2008 and was directed by Deborah Dickson, series A 3-disc, 600-minute region 1 DVD version of the documentary was released by PBS on May 6,2008. Special features include scene selection, the episode, deleted and extended scenes. Film A 90-minute region A1 Blu-ray Disc version of Another Day In Paradise was released by PBS on March 10,2009, despite a 5-day search that covered a 360-square-mile area, Macrum, who was 22 and from Sugarland, Texas, was never found. Sailor, a documentary about the life on board HMS Ark Royal in the 1970s. Official website for the miniseries Carrier at the Internet Movie Database
7. Drone (2014 film) – Not to be confused with Drones, an American thriller film. Drone is a 2014 English-language documentary film directed by Norwegian director Tonje Hessen Schei, the film explores the use of drones in warfare. Drone aired on the TV network Arte on April 15,2014, the documentary screened at several film festivals throughout 2014, winning several awards. Drone was released in Norway on February 27,2015, the docu also investigates the ways in which world leaders engage in wars, as well as look at the struggle of anti-war and civil rights activists. Drone was produced by Lars Løge at Flimmer Film and directed by Tonje Hessen Schei, the film received financial support from backers in Norway and from around the world. The sales outfit LevelK acquired Drone at the Nordic Film Market at the Gothenburg Film Festival in January 2014, a 58-minute cut of Drone premiered on the TV network Arte on April 15,2014. A 79-minute cut was edited for subsequent screenings, in October 2014, Drone screened at the Bergen International Film Festival and won Best Norwegian Documentary and the Checkpoint Human Rights awards. In January 2015, it screened at the Tromsø International Film Festival, in the following February, it screened at the Berlin International Film Festival and won the Cinema for Peace award. In the same month, LevelK sold distribution rights to Drone to several major territories, Drone was released in Norway on February 27,2015. It was released in the United Kingdom on April 10,2015, john DeFore, reviewing for The Hollywood Reporter, called Drone an important contribution to debates over a means of warfare that is just in its infancy. DeFore said the documentary had an effective and clear-headed presentation of multiple sides of the debate
8. Fighter Pilot: Operation Red Flag – It chronicles his experience during USAF Red Flag training at Nellis AFB, a simulated air war designed to train pilots for combat. The film was released in December 2004, the exercise simulates an air war without firing actual weapons using NACTS. The participating aircraft, carrying specialized telemetry pods or other equipment, send back information to computer, and when they have fired. Color codes during computer replay debriefs offer a way of telling participants apart, with blue planes representing friendly forces, Fighter Pilot was met with mixed reviews. Director Stephen Low is either unable or unwilling to do this, bruce Westbook of the Houston Chronicle commented on his review that the crisp military teams are inspiring, showing fierce dedication and camaraderie. Fighter Pilot should set minds at ease that businesslike experts defend our skies, but it plays more like a recruitment film than an eye-popping IMAX experience. The film is rated at 56% on Rotten Tomatoes. Official site Fighter Pilot, Operation Red Flag at the Internet Movie Database Fighter Pilot, Operation Red Flag at Rotten Tomatoes
9. The Fighting Lady – The Fighting Lady is a 1944 documentary film produced by the U. S. Navy and narrated by Lt. Robert Taylor USNR. The plot of the film revolves around the life of seamen on board an aircraft carrier. Because of war time restrictions, the name of the carrier was disguised as the Fighting Lady. A few shots of aircraft landing were filmed aboard the Yorktowns sister ship USS Ticonderoga, frequently mentioned is the adage that war is 99% waiting. The film provides views of a series of airstrikes at Japanese bases in the Pacific theatre. Following an attack on Kwajalein in early 1944, intelligence reports that an armada of Japanese ships is massing near Truk, a major Japanese logistical base in the Carolines. The Fighting Lady and some of her task force are sent on a hit and run mission to neutralize it and return to Marcus, but not to attempt a landing. Once the ship returns from the massive, two-day Truk raid, it is sent to the waters off the Marianas. At the very end some of the servicemen who appeared in the film are reintroduced to us, the film uses Technicolor footage shot by gun cameras mounted directly on aircraft guns during combat. Boyington had been captured by the Japanese and was being transported to a camp on the Truk islands when the raid began. According to Boyington, the film shows a crater from a two-thousand pound bomb that landed just fifteen feet from the pit. Due to her heritage, and to honor all carrier sailors and airmen. Alfred Newmans musical theme originally appeared in Vigil in the Night and was reused in Hell and High Water, list of Allied propaganda films of World War II The Fighting Lady is available for free download at the Internet Archive The Fighting Lady at the Internet Movie Database
10. The Last Bomb – The Last Bomb was a 1945 propaganda film mainly concerning the conventional phase of the bombing of Japan in 1945. It was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature, the film begins by describing the taking off points in Saipan, Guam, and Tinian, remarking how they have changed since American occupation. General Curtis LeMay is shown planning a raid on Japans industrial areas. The film then proceeds to the bombing of Japan, showing one of the B-29s dogfights with Japanese planes. When the bombers return to base, the hazards of war are assessed, particularly the problems associated with landing the large planes, which could sometimes be fatal. At the very end some color footage of the cloud at Hiroshima is shown. The short film The Last Bomb is available for download at the Internet Archive The Last Bomb at the Internet Movie Database Complete film at Google Video
11. Little Dieter Needs to Fly – Little Dieter Needs to Fly is a 1997 German-British-French documentary film written and directed by Werner Herzog, produced by Werner Herzog Filmproduktion, and premiered on German teleivison. The film was released to DVD in 1998 by Anchor Bay, Herzog found a kindred spirit in a German-American Navy pilot and Vietnam veteran, Dieter Dengler. Like Herzog, Dengler grew up in a Germany reduced to rubble by World War II, denglers stories of hunger and deprivation in the years after the war echo similar stories from Herzogs past. Dengler recounts a memory of Allied fighter-bombers destroying his village, in which he saw one of the pilots. At 18, Dengler emigrated to the United States and he served a two-year enlistment in the Air Force, but was frustratingly unable to gain a pilots slot in that service. After leaving the Air Force, Dengler attended college and then joined the Navy, after completing flight training, he was assigned as a Douglas A-1 Skyraider pilot in Attack Squadron 65 on the USS Constellation. In 1966, Dengler served aboard the USS Ranger with VA-145, at the time, the squadron was equipped with the Douglas AD-6/A-1H Skyraider, a single-engine, propeller-driven attack plane. On the morning of 1 February, Lt. Dengler launched from the Ranger with three aircraft on an interdiction mission near the Laotian border. Visibility was poor due to weather, and upon rolling in on the target, Lt. Dengler, Dengler was the last man in and was hit by anti-aircraft fire. He was forced to crash-land his Skyraider in Laos, Dengler was taken prisoner by the Pathet Lao, then turned over to soldiers of the Army of North Vietnam. After a period of torture and starvation chained to the bottom of a bamboo cage, the bulk of the film consists of footage from a trip Herzog took with Dengler back to Laos and Thailand to recreate his ordeal. Herzog hired locals to play the part of his captors and had Dengler retrace his steps while describing his experiences, Herzog directed a feature film based on the actual events, starring Christian Bale as Dieter, called Rescue Dawn. The film was released on 24 July 2007, Dieter Dengler as himself Werner Herzog as himself/narrator Eugene Deatrick as himself Little Dieter Needs to Fly received critical acclaim. On review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes, the film has a 93% rating based on 14 reviews, ferocious Reality, Documentary according to Werner Herzog. The Allied Bombing Campaign of Germany in Herzogs Little Dieter Needs to Fly, bombs Away, Representing the Air War over Europe and Japan. The Cinema of Werner Herzog, Aesthetic Ecstasy and Truth, Little Dieter Needs to Fly at the Internet Movie Database Little Dieter Needs to Fly at Rotten Tomatoes
12. Memphis Belle: A Story of a Flying Fortress – The Memphis Belle, A Story of a Flying Fortress is a 1944 documentary film which ostensibly provides an account of the final mission of the crew of the Memphis Belle, a Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress. In May 1943 it became the first U. S. Army Air Forces heavy bomber to complete 25 missions over Europe, the dramatic 16 mm color film of actual battles was made by three cinematographers, including First Lieutenant Harold J. Tannenbaum. Tannebaum, a veteran of World War I, was killed in action during the filming when the bomber he was in was shot down over France on April 16,1943. The film was directed by Major William Wyler, narrated by Eugene Kern and it was made under the auspices of the First Motion Picture Unit, part of the United States Army Air Forces. The crew on the missions filmed included, Captain Robert K. Morgan Captain James A. Verinis Captain Vincent B. Evans Captain Charles B, Verinis finished his tour two days before the rest of Morgans crew. Nor was Morgans crew the one selected by Wyler for filming. Morgan was then selected and his crew re-united by the Eighth Air Force to complete its tour together, hells Angels actually completed 25 missions first, on May 13. Morgan states in his memoirs that he was approached by Wyler in late January 1943 after his crews eighth mission, a pretty good chance of coming back. Morgan agreed after assurances from Wyler that the crew would not interfere with operation of the airplane in combat in any way. The first mission flown in filming was not aboard the Memphis Belle, the Memphis Belle was being repaired after severe battle damage incurred on February 16. The mission experienced heavy German fighter attacks and two of the 91st groups B-17s were shot down, the camera setup is documented in the photograph of the Bad Penny, which Morgan and Wyler flew on a mission to Antwerp on April 5,1943. The 16 mm color film used did not include sound, the original crew, during their war bonds drive in the United States, made typical appropriate comments to each other while watching the silent movie in a studio. The result was difficult to distinguish from real combat recordings, king George VI and his consort Queen Elizabeth are seen congratulating the crew on May 18, after Morgans final mission but the day before that of the B-17. In 2001, the United States Library of Congress deemed the original version culturally significant, the Memphis Belle aircraft is now preserved at the National Museum of the United States Air Force at Wright-Patterson AFB, near Dayton, Ohio. A fictionalized version of the story, Memphis Belle, was produced in 1990 by David Puttnam in England and it was co-produced by Catherine Wyler, the daughter of William Wyler, directed by Michael Caton-Jones and starred Matthew Modine and Eric Stoltz. In 2010, the film was released in high definition on Blu-ray disc by Periscope Film LLC and it is also included with the 2014 Blu-ray release of the 1990 Memphis Belle
13. Reach for the Sky (2001 film) – Reach for the Sky is a 2001 Israeli documentary film which follows a group of young Israelis as they struggle to become pilots in their nations army. But after all that go through, only some will enjoy the honor of wearing those wings. The rest will be ordinary soldiers, after the six days are over, they sit the young soldiers down, and in a frank tone the leading officer reads off everyone’s names, telling them bluntly whether they passed or failed. Pilots in the Israeli army are so esteemed that young men and women are willing to subject themselves to days of torturous drills. Reach For The Sky follows one group of people as they suffer through never-ending runs. The film shows how a group of average high school graduates are molded into obedient soldiers. But, despite all their work, only some of them will become pilots. The rest will go home disappointed. Every grueling day is a test of the men and women’s will, but one drill especially separates out the weak from the strong — an endless run up and down one hill known as “the Trig. ”The young hopefuls start off in a sprint. The grueling path goes on for so long and is so difficult that the viewer realizes the true feat isn’t maintaining one’s speed – it’s continuing to move at all, one girl stops only after passing out. She says she decided that as long as she was conscious, another girl explains that she felt like she “couldn’t breathe” but continued walking anyway, surprising herself. “I don’t know, I must have inner strength, ” she says
14. Rosies of the North – Rosies of the North is a 46-minute Canadian documentary film made in 1999 by the National Film Board of Canada and directed by Kelly Saxberg. The film recounts the story of the women at the Canadian Car and Foundry in Fort William, Ontario and it also is the story of female engineer Elsie MacGill, who became known as the Queen of the Hurricanes. The title of the film is an allusion to the iconic image of Rosie the Riveter. In 1939, Canada joined the war effort with factories turning out war machines. At the Canadian Car and Foundry in Fort William, Ontario, many of them were young, and came from as far away as the Prairies. Of the 7,000 workers at Can-Car,3,000 were women on the floor, initially. Men typically were the lead-hands, more experienced workers who would train, at least at first and it was soon evident that women reacted much more favourably to other women as their mentors and instructors. For a while, the animosity between the men and women was palpable, one old hand who showed his dislike by refusing to let women sign out before him, ensured the first seats on the buses leaving the factory were then occupied by the men. They steadfastly refused to give up their seats, leaving the women hanging on by the straps, the obstinate fellow came on board after women welded his lunchbox to a piece of steel. Eventually, the factory assigned female matrons to look after the women, acting as nurses, nannies, the factory called them intelligent, likeable, friendly women, while the women knew that the matrons were there to keep them in line, and not tempt the men. Women still made less than the men whom they had trained, and married women were summarily dismissed. The one woman boss at the factory was Elsie MacGill, who was first in charge of the production of fighter aircraft, by the time the production line shut down in 1943, Can-Car had produced over 1,400 Hurricanes. Just as the factory was re-tooling for production of Curtiss SB2C Helldiver torpedo and dive bomber aircraft for the United States Navy, MacGill and it was later revealed they were having an affair. The women on the shop floor continued on until the end of the war, at the refurbished Can-Car plant, now building rolling stock and buses,60 years later, the women came back to the factory to remember when they had the greatest experience of their lives. For the reunion, a highlight was the arrival of a restored Curtiss Helldiver which did a flypast with one of the women factory workers. With the return of men from the war, women came under pressure to return to running households. Rosies of the North quickly found favour with viewers and has been broadcast on at least eight networks in North America. Librarian Joan Payzant, in her review for CM magazine, observed, will appreciate the nostalgia in the film
15. Target for Tonight – Target for Tonight is a 1941 British documentary film billed as filmed and acted by the Royal Air Force, all while under fire. It was directed by Harry Watt, the film is about the crew of a Wellington aircraft. The film went on to win an honorary Academy Award in 1942, before the film, several text cards explain bombers and the Royal Air Force chain of command. The film begins with an aircraft flying over and dropping a box of undeveloped film. Bomber Command develops the film and analyses the resulting photographs, which are presented for the audience to see, there has been a massive build-up by German forces in the subject area for the past few months. The film shows the planning of the mission, even detailing how the bomber wing chooses munitions for the task, the weather forecast is expected to be good and the pilots are briefed. The crew of F for Freddie, the bomber that is the point of the film, suit up. While over Germany, the bombs the target, dead on for one bomb. The radio operator is hit in the leg, and Freddie is the last aircraft to return, mist covers the water, prompting worry at the Command. Meanwhile, Freddie cannot climb after the flak hit and they are not losing altitude, but are in a bad situation. Tension builds in the film until finally, F for Freddie lands, No aircraft are lost and the mission is a complete success. In order to not give information to the enemy, RAF Mildenhall took the fictitious name of Millerton Aerodrome. The second pilot was played by Gordon Woollatt, also appearing is Constance Babington Smith, who as a serving WAAF officer at the time was responsible for photographic interpretation of aerial reconnaissance pictures. Appearing in the control room scene is world record holder John Cobb, although the film was about a bomber squadron flying Wellingtons, the aircraft shown on the film poster are Boulton Paul Defiant fighters. Herman Wouk, in his novel The Winds of War, included a Wellington bomber christened F for Freddie in an episode of the story, the lead character, American naval captain Victor Henry, flies onboard F for Freddie as an observer during a bombing mission over Berlin. They have trouble holding altitude but make it back after a long, scenes from the film were included in the episode Whirlwind from the documentary British World War II documentary The World at War. The documentary criticised the film for what it considered was a portrayal of strategic bombing. Until the development of radio navigational aids and the pathfinder force later in the war, a possible identity of F for Freddie, is Wellington Mk 1c OJ-F which was serving with No.149 Squadron from November 1940 to September 1941
16. Thunderbolt (1947 film) – The film was originally shot in 16mm color by members of the Army Air Forces. The 12th Combat Camera Unit recorded the footage using cameras mounted on some of the P-47s. Narrated by Robert Lowery and Eugene Kern, with Lloyd Bridges portraying the thoughts of one of the pilots, purports to follow a P-47 Thunderbolt squadron of the group through an interdiction mission from the time they wake up to their return to base afterwards with one aircraft missing. Col. Gilbert O. Wymond Jr. was awarded the Silver Star for destroying an ammunition dump concealed in a house near Siena and incurred severe damage to his P-47, Wymond appears prominently with his P-47 throughout the documentary. Directors Wyler and Sturges, serving as officers in the AAF, were attached to the 12th CCU during the period it filmed the activities of the 57th Fighter Group, Wyler used his association as a passport to visit many areas of liberated Europe after completion of the initial shooting. Although shown to the late in 1945, Thunderbolt. was not generally released until 1947 by Monogram Pictures. Half of the 1947 profits from the release went to the Army Air Force Relief Society. The introduction to the film by James Stewart was filmed in late January 1947, Stewart had commanded a bomber wing as a colonel during the war. When the pilots return, the film shows how they try to relax in the makeshift American community in Corsica. It also takes a look into how some of them are getting along emotionally. Thunderbolt ends with the Allies liberating Rome on June 4,1944, the narrators note that it is the evening of the mission in Corsica, but not the end of the war. At the end of the film, the words THE END appear and he arrived in Rome shortly after its liberation in June 1944, followed by the rest of the team a few days later, focusing on Operation Strangle at the suggestion of General Henry H. Arnold. They attached themselves to the 12th CCU, where Wyler recruited former wildlife photographer Sgt, karl H. Maslowski into his team as cinematographer. In July, they flew to Alto Landing Ground on northeast Corsica, Wyler and Sturges flew to London in October to edit the film and have it processed into 35mm by Technicolor at the Eastman Kodak labs. They found that only 1% of the footage from the cameras mounted in the P-47s was usable, the further delay in editing meant Sturges and Koenig returned to Hollywood to continue editing raw footage and write the narration script. Wyler remained in Europe touring captured areas and in March 1945 decided to make one last flight in the B-25 to film more atmosphere shots, returning to Grosseto Air Field in Tuscanyafter the flight, Wyler found he could not hear and had difficulty in maintaining his balance. He had suffered total deafness as a result of damage in the noisy unpressurized aircraft. The 57th FG had moved here from the Italian mainland on March 28,1944, shortly after he was released from the Army
17. Train Busters – Train Busters is a 13-minute 1943 Canadian documentary film, directed by Sydney Newman. The film was made by the Royal Canadian Air Force Overseas Film Unit, Train Busters depicts the Allied night bombing campaign over occupied Europe that was complemented by close air support missions flown by the RCAF targeting enemy trains. In 1943, the RCAF strength and equipment consists of 32 overseas squadrons based in England, two fundamental missions were essential to the Allied air strategy, night bombing and interdiction. While bombers struck at the heart of occupied Europe, the German war machine reacted by sending out supplies to their far-flung European bases by rail, the RCAF disrupted the nerve centres by attacking the rail system. These specialized ground attack fighters were successful, with fighter-bombers destroying munition trains. Typical of the NFBs wartime series of short films, Train Busters relied heavily on military assistance in obtaining stock footage. The film incorporated footage shot over a period of time from 1939–1943, train-Busters, the film was issued to military bases on May 25,1943, as Newsreel of the Week, Issue No. 8, part of the Canadian Army newsreel series, each film in NFBs Canada Carries On series was shown over a six-month period as part of the shorts or newsreel segments in approximately 800 theatres across Canada. The NFB had an arrangement with Famous Players theatres to ensure that Canadians from coast to coast could see them, with further distribution by Columbia Pictures. After the six-month theatrical tour ended, individual films were available on 16 mm to schools, libraries, churches and factories. They were also available to film libraries operated by university. Although available from the National Film Board either online or as a DVD, historian Malek Khouri analyzed the role of the NFB wartime documentaries, with Train Busters characterized as an example of a propaganda film. During the early years of the NFB, its output was largely informed by the turbulent political and social climate the world was facing. World War II, Communism, unemployment, the role of labour unions, in Filming Politics, Khouri described a new-found fascination with technological advances in winning the war, especially through the use of air power. Train Busters at the Internet Movie Database Watch Train Busters at NFB. ca
18. A Very Short War – A Very Short War is a one-hour documentary produced in 2010 by Karl Conti of Conti Bros Films. It was written by Susan Young and directed by Bill Young and it was publicly and privately funded, with support from Screen Australia, The History Channel, and NRK2. Susan Young and Bill Young are the niece and nephew of Cliff Carpenter, the nine RAF airmen who lost their lives that day,9 April 1940, were the first Allied servicemen to lose their lives in the defense of Norway. They are remembered with a ceremony each year at their graves in the Sylling churchyard. There was one survivor – Welshman Ogwyn George, the radio operator – who fell 3,000 feet without a parachute, hitting trees and he was discovered and rescued by Norwegian Johan Bråthen. The mission in the RAF Sunderland Flying Boat L2167 of 210 Squadron was a volunteer mission, the next morning they flew to Invergordon in Scotland where, for what was believed to be a mechanical problem, they changed aeroplane to Sunderland L2167. They took off at 1pm and opened sealed orders to learn of their destination - Oslo, according to the one survivor, Ogwyn George, the crew had no knowledge that Germany had invaded Norway on that day. The Sunderland arrived over Oslo around 5. 30pm and was hit by flak from German ships in Oslo Harbour, the pilot turned the Sunderland north-west to escape but was pursued and fired upon by two Messerschmitt Bf 110s piloted by Oblt Werner Hansen and Oblt Helmut Lent. The Sunderland exploded and crashed in the mountains of Overskogen north of the village of Sylling, Helmut Lent went on to become a Luftwaffe nightfighter ace with 110 kills to his credit. He was killed in a accident in 1944 and was given a state funeral. Werner Hansen was shot down and killed by own flak in 1941, the story of the invasion of Norway on 9 April 1940 is detailed by Norwegian writer Cato Guhnfeldt in his book Fornebu 9. A vivid account of the fate of Sunderland L2167 is included in this book, the documentary includes an interview with legendary Australian aviator Nancy-Bird Walton, who flew with Cliff Carpenter and got lost over Bass Strait whilst trying to locate King Island. They eventually made back in Victoria near Geelong, desperately short of fuel. The interview, recorded in September 2008, lasted 45 minutes and is the last extensive interview Nancy Bird Walton gave before her death on 13 January 2009
19. Victory Through Air Power (film) – Victory Through Air Power is a 1943 American Technicolor animated documentary feature film produced by Walt Disney Productions and released by United Artists on July 17,1943. It is based on the 1942 book Victory Through Air Power by Alexander P. de Seversky, de Seversky appeared in the film, an unusual departure from the Disney animated feature films of the time. Edward H. Plumb, Paul J. Smith and Oliver Wallace were nominated for the Academy Award for Best Music Score of a Dramatic or Comedy Picture. The popular filmmaker Walt Disney read the book and felt that its message was so important that he financed the animated production of Victory Through Air Power. The film was created to express Seversky’s theories to government officials. Movie critic Richard Schickel says that Disney pushed the film out in a hurry and it was not until 1945 Disney was able to pay off his $1.2 million war film deficit. On July 11,1943, the New York Times devoted a page, Victory from the Air. This was possibly the first time that such skilled use of visual description had been placed at the service of a political argument. On December 8,1941, Disney studios were converted into a propaganda machine for the United States government. S. Among the notables who decided after seeing the film that Seversky and Disney knew what they were talking about were Winston Churchill, the Disney studio sent a print for them to view when they were attending the Quebec Conference. According to Leonard Maltin, it changed FDRs way of thinking—he agreed that Seversky was right, Maltin also adds that it was only after Roosevelt saw Victory Through Air Power that our country made the commitment to long-range bombing. Roosevelt recognized that film was a way to teach and Disney could provide Washington with high quality information. The American people were becoming united and Disney was able to inform them of the situation without presenting excessive chaos, the animation was popular among soldiers and was superior to other documentary films and written instructions at the time. The film played a significant role for the Disney Corporation because it was the beginning of educational films. The educational films would be, and still are, continually produced and used for the military, schools, the company learned how to effectively communicate their ideas and efficiently produce the films while introducing the Disney characters to millions of people worldwide. Throughout the rest of the war, Disney characters effectively acted as ambassadors to the world, one scene showed a fictional rocket bomb destroying a fortified German submarine pen. According to anecdote, this inspired the British to develop a real rocket bomb to attack targets that were heavily protected with thick concrete. Due to its origin, the became known as the Disney bomb
20. Wasp Wings – Wasp Wings is a 42-minute 1945 Canadian documentary film made by the Royal Canadian Air Force Overseas Film Unit and the National Film Board of Canada. The film takes its name from the colourful markings known as invasion stripes that were painted on Supermarine Spitfire fighter aircraft on D-Day, starting in England in 1943, Royal Canadian Air Force Spitfire fighter wings in the RAF Second Tactical Air Force were preparing for deployment to overseas bases. Using the fast and agile Spitfire in a number of different marks, the Spitfire wings played an essential part in a swift-moving, deadly striking air force. The success of the RCAF Spitfire units was due to both aircrews and ground crews that not only set up the tactical airfields, but kept the aircraft serviced, in the last months of the Second World War, 2TAF bagin to relax as their missions came to an end. Typical of the NFBs wartime series of short films, Wasp Wings relied heavily on military assistance in obtaining footage at operational bases. The film was based on the 2nd Tactical Ar Force 126,127 and 144 Wings and was compiled from film shot from 1943–1945. The men with flying in their blood who were featured in Wasp Wings included Canadian Spitfire aces Buzz Beurling, Dal Russel, Keith Hodson, Robert Wendell Buck McNair, aerial combat sequences utilized actual gun camera footage. As part of the NFBs newsreel programs, Wasp Wings was produced for the theatrical market, each film was shown over a six-month period as part of the shorts or newsreel segments in approximately 800 theatres across Canada. The NFB had an arrangement with Famous Players theatres to ensure that Canadians from coast to coast could see them, with further distribution by Columbia Pictures. After the six-month theatrical tour ended, individual films were available on 16 mm to schools, libraries, churches and factories. They were also available to film libraries operated by university. Although available from the National Film Board either online or as a DVD, during the early years of the NFB, its creative output was largely informed by the turbulent political and social climate the world was facing. World War II, Communism, unemployment, the role of labour unions, and working conditions were all subjects featured by the NFB during the period from 1939 to 1946