6.7/10
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13 user 3 critic

The Flying Fleet (1929)

The story follows six midshipman after they graduate from Annapolis. Their goal is to become U.S. Navy pilots and three of them are eliminated at the San Diego Naval Base. The remaining ... See full summary »

Director:

(as George Hill)

Writers:

(story) (as Lieut. Commander Frank Wead U.S.N.), (story) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Ralph Graves ...
Steve Randall
...
Anita Hastings
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Storyline

The story follows six midshipman after they graduate from Annapolis. Their goal is to become U.S. Navy pilots and three of them are eliminated at the San Diego Naval Base. The remaining three undergo grueling weeks of training at Pensacole Florida, and one crashes. The remaining two get their "wings" and are sent back to San Diego as full-fledged "Sea Hawks", and prepare there for the first Honolulu flight. Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

19 January 1929 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Die fliegende Flotte  »

Box Office

Budget:

$385,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (Turner library print)

Sound Mix:

(MovieTone) (musical score and sound effects)|

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This film's production was announced on May 17, 1928. See more »

Goofs

When Specs and Kewpie reunite with the others back at San Diego, Specs announces he's flying, but as a navigator. However, he is not wearing his silver Naval Observer wings on his uniform. See more »

Quotes

Anita Hastings: [after Steve and Tommy pluck her from the water and bring her aboard the liberty launch] I didn't think I'd be joining the Navy today!
See more »

Crazy Credits

"Dedicated to the officers and men of Naval Aviation whose splendid co-operation made this production possible." See more »

Soundtracks

Where Do We Go From Here
(1917) (uncredited)
Music and Lyrics by Howard Johnson and Percy Wenrich
Played as part of the score
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Despite Novarro, a Pale Successor to "Wings"
6 May 2014 | by (Alexandria, VA) – See all my reviews

A slight story of Annapolis-cadet camaraderie and a predictable romantic triangle provide excuses for extensive aerial footage of post-World War I biplanes in flight. Evidently inspired by the success of William Wellman's "Wings," "The Flying Fleet" takes the basics of that Oscar winner and makes a valiant effort to repeat the earlier success. Unfortunately, peacetime lacks the action and dynamics of World War I, Anita Page lacks the appeal of Clara Bow, and the relationship between Ramon Novarro and Ralph Graves lacks the depth of interaction between Charles Buddy Rogers and Richard Arlen.

Released in 1929, during the transition period between silents and talkies, "The Flying Fleet" is a silent film with inter-titles that has been enhanced with synchronized sound effects and a musical score. Ramon Novarro and Ralph Graves are best buddies from their days at the Academy into their basic training as pilots. However, when Anita Page enters the scene, the pair compete for her affections, and the friendship is tested. Ralph Graves, a ruggedly handsome guy, is aggressive in his pursuit of Page and often tests the bounds of friendship with his underhanded, often mean-spirited tricks to outwit Novarro. Understandably, Graves's antics tilt audience sympathy towards Novarro, the film's star, who maintains a stoic, sensitive, and dewy-eyed stance.

However, the film's best moments are provided by the formation flying and aerial stunts, well photographed by Ira H. Morgan. Although the aerial battles and dog fights in "Wings" remain more exciting, the airborne antics in "The Flying Fleet" are still awesome for the time and a treat for aficionados of vintage aircraft. Novarro retained his handsome leading man looks when this film was made, and his fans will definitely relish his presence and the occasional glimpse of his physique. However, while breezily entertaining, the story is slight and predictable, and, despite the aerial work, the movie pales beside "Wings." "The Flying Fleet" will appeal largely to admirers of the one-time "new Valentino" and to vintage aerial photography buffs.


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