Review: ‘Air Force’

Air Force is the saga of a Flying Fortress (the Mary Ann, a Boeing B-17). It is gripping, informative, entertaining, thrilling. It is a patriotic heart-throb in celluloid without preaching; it is inspirational without being phoney in its emotions.

Air Force is the saga of a Flying Fortress (the Mary Ann, a Boeing B-17). It is gripping, informative, entertaining, thrilling. It is a patriotic heart-throb in celluloid without preaching; it is inspirational without being phoney in its emotions.

Perhaps the best known cast component is John Garfield and it’s the more effective that the principals are not as well known. John Ridgley is Capt Quincannon and Gig Young his co-pilot, both capital. Arthur Kennedy plays the bombardier; Charles Drake gives new and usually not suspected importance to the navigator’s role in a Flying Fortress. Harry Carey gives a corking performance as the veteran crew chief, a career sgt from way back.

Ray Montgomery is the asst radio operator, and the surly Sgt Winocki, aerial gunner, is excellently played by John Garfield. Having flunked out as a flying officer, Garfield looks forward to three weeks hence, when his enlistment is over, but of course the Pearl Harbor debacle regenerates him into a vindictive American who stays on indef.

1943: Best Editing.

Nominations: Best Original Screenplay, B&W Cinematography, Speciall Effects

Air Force

Production

Warner. Director Howard Hawks; Producer Hal B. Wallis; Writer Dudley Nichols; Camera James Wong Howe Editor George Amy; Music Franz Waxman Art John Hughes

Crew

(B&W) Available on VHS. Extract of a review from 1943. Running time: 124 MIN.

With

John Ridgely Gig Young Arthur Kennedy Harry Carey Charles Drake John Garfield
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