Red Tails comes out on Friday. I will probably see it over the weekend and write up a movie review on my blog on Monday.
Stacy and I are going to go see it Friday night as well. Aviation Date Night...awesome.
I saw the trailer on TV... no idea what the movie will be like, and I've gotten to expect (if not like) computer animation for the flying scenes, but it looked like bad computer animation.
While I haven't yet seen the movie, there was a special screening here in Ft Worth last night. Three Tuskegee Airmen were the honored guests. No comments in the paper about the quality of the computer animation, but the three Airmen said that the depiction of the training was spot-on. Looks like they did their homework on that part of it.
I saw the preview at Oshkosh under less than perfect conditions (outdoors) but have to say I sure liked what I saw...and the online trailers look great...
Currently working on the wings
I know Red Tails has already been raked over the coals for having CGI rather than real airplanes, for inaccurate markings on the aircraft, for P-51s pulling Pitts-like maneuvers, etc. etc. Just keep in mind that this is entertainment and not a history lesson and should be judged as such. To be fair, George Lucas has produced a companion documentary to Red Tails called "Double Victory." This tells the story of the Tuskegee Airmen in true historical nature without the "Hollywood" effects. For more on "Double Victory," you can visit this link: http://www.history.com/images/media/..._Classroom.pdf
I'd also suggest that if you are truly interested in learning more about the Tuskegee Airmen, have a look at the following EAA Timeless Voices of Aviation interviews with Alexander Jefferson and Robert Martin.
Jon, et. al.,
I too want to see the movie...knowing Lucas and Star Wars...the CGI will be VG and exciting.
One of the young actors appeared this week on one of the late night talk shows and his historical perspective was a little off.
He implied that the Red Tails 'Won the war'...not accurate. In addition he went on the explain how prior to Red Tails, the fighter pilots 'ran off chasing German planes so they could become Aces' leaving the bombers all alone!? When the Red Tails showed up, they had a new strategy and stayed with the bombers in close air support. He even made the statement that the Red Tails 'never lost a bomber' because of their new tactic!?
My understanding of the fighter escort tactics was just the reverse...the fighters had traditionally stayed close to the bombers...the Germans would straf the entire group, sometimes head-on taking out lots of bombers in the process. About the time the P-51s arrived on the scene the AAF brass began to re-think their strategy and decided to allow the fighters to fly high cover and intercept the German fighters before they could pounce on our bombers. Correct me here if I'm wrong. If my understanding is correct then this young actor sure didn't pay attention to the history involved in the film production.
I'm all for acknowledging the contribution of the Tuskegee Airman...it is long overdue. However, I'm concerned that Hollywood may try and turn them into 'super heroes' that 'saved the war'.
BTW...the young actor also implied that all Tuskegee Airman were fighter pilots...also not true...there were some 900+ Red Tails...400+ went into fighter training and most saw combat. The other 500+ went into bomber training and only about half that number saw combat before the war was over. It will be interesting if Lucas even talks or shows the bomber aspects of the story.
Will be interested in how the film portrays the Red Tails and hope that Lucas and company get it historically accurate.
I'm glad to see the Tuskegee Airmen getting the recognition they deserve and hope the movie will portray history accurately. Since it is coming out of Holywood I imagine it will be overly dramatized. The urban legend is that the Red Tails never lost a bomber on their watch. The records show 25 bombers were shot down under their escort which I think is still a very respectable record. It just amazes me how the urban legends and folk lore trumps documented facts at times. I'm anxious to hear what you guys think after seeing the movie. I'm sure I'll go see the movie but I want to wait for the crowds to die down a bit before going.
Here are some additional Tuskeegee facts:Tuskegee Airmen facts:Tuskegee Army Air Field, located at Tuskegee Institute in Alabama, was the training center for all black fighter pilots during World War II.There were 996 original Airmen. These included pilots, bombardiers, and navigators. More than 10,000 black men and women served as their vital support personnel. 450 served in combat overseas in the European Theater of Operations, North Africa, and the Mediterranean. 66 of the Tuskegee aviators died in combat. 33 Tuskegee Airmen became prisoners of war. None of the bombers they escorted was lost to enemy fighters. They flew 15,533 sorties between May, 1943 and June 9, 1945. They destroyed 251 enemy aircraft. They sank a German destroyer using only their machine guns. They disabled more than 600 box cars, locomotives and rolling stock. They won more than 850 medals, including 150 Distinguished Flying Crosses, eight Purple Hearts, 14 Bronze Stars, 744 Air Medals and clusters, and three distinguished unit citations. For every pilot, there were at least 10 black men and women on the ground in support roles including mechanics, medical technicians, administrative support and cooks. They were trained at Chanute Field, Illinois. White American pilots were not allowed to fly more than 52 missions, but black American pilots often flew up to 100 missions due to lack of replacements. The all-black 477th bomber group was activated and scheduled to
fight in the Pacific, but the war ended before their deployment.