IMDb > Flying Tigers (1942)
Flying Tigers
Quicklinks
Top Links
trailers and videosfull cast and crewtriviaofficial sitesmemorable quotes
Overview
main detailscombined detailsfull cast and crewcompany credits
Awards & Reviews
user reviewsexternal reviewsawardsuser ratingsparents guidemessage board
Plot & Quotes
plot summarysynopsisplot keywordsmemorable quotes
Did You Know?
triviagoofssoundtrack listingcrazy creditsalternate versionsmovie connectionsFAQ
Other Info
box office/businessrelease datesfilming locationstechnical specsliterature listingsNewsDesk
Promotional
taglines trailers and videos posters photo gallery
External Links
showtimesofficial sitesmiscellaneousphotographssound clipsvideo clips

Flying Tigers (1942) More at IMDbPro »

Photos (See all 21 | slideshow)

Overview

User Rating:
6.8/10   2,232 votes »
Your Rating:
Saving vote...
Deleting vote...
/10   (delete | history)
Sorry, there was a problem
MOVIEmeter: ?
Down 27% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Director:
Writers:
Kenneth Gamet (screenplay) &
Barry Trivers (screenplay) ...
(more)
Contact:
View company contact information for Flying Tigers on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
8 October 1942 (USA) See more »
Genre:
Tagline:
NUNCA COMO HASTA AHORA SE FILMO LA GUERRA EL EL AIRE TAN CRUENTA, TAN REAL, TAN VIOLENTA! (original Argentine poster - all caps) See more »
Plot:
Capt. Jim Gordon's command of the famed American mercenary fighter group in China is complicated by the recruitment of an old friend who is a reckless hotshot. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
Awards:
Nominated for 3 Oscars. See more »
User Reviews:
Wayne Goes To War See more (34 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

John Wayne ... Capt. Jim Gordon
John Carroll ... Woody Jason

Anna Lee ... Brooke Elliott
Paul Kelly ... Hap Davis
Gordon Jones ... Alabama Smith

Mae Clarke ... Verna Bales
Addison Richards ... Col. Lindsay
Edmund MacDonald ... Blackie Bales
Bill Shirley ... Dale
Tom Neal ... Reardon
Malcolm 'Bud' McTaggart ... McCurdy (as Malcolm 'Bud' McTaggart)
David Bruce ... Lt. Barton
Chester Gan ... Mike
Jimmie Dodd ... McIntosh (as James Dodd)
Gregg Barton ... Tex Norton
John James ... Selby
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Richard Crane ... Airfield Radioman (uncredited)
Elvira Curci ... Hindu Woman (uncredited)
Rico De Montez ... Passenger (uncredited)
Eddie Dew ... Miller - Injured Pilot (uncredited)
Dan Dowling ... Pilot (uncredited)
Walter Fenner ... American (uncredited)
Willie Fung ... Jim 'Gin' Sling - Waiter (uncredited)
Bill Hunter ... Mechanic (uncredited)

Anne Jeffreys ... Nurse (uncredited)
Allen Jung ... Dr. Tsing's Assistant (uncredited)
Dorothy Kelly ... Nurse (uncredited)
Charles La Torre ... Armenian Passenger (uncredited)

Charles Lane ... Repkin (uncredited)

Lotus Long ... Children's Matron (uncredited)
Richard Loo ... Dr. Tsing (uncredited)
Dick Morris ... Pilot (uncredited)
Nestor Paiva ... Missionairy (uncredited)
José Pérez ... Rangoon Hotel Clerk (uncredited)

Franklin D. Roosevelt ... Himself (voice) (uncredited) (archive footage)
Tom Seidel ... Barratt - Replacement Pilot (uncredited)
Bhogwan Singh ... Hindu Passenger (uncredited)
Eleanor Soohoo ... Chinese Stewardess (uncredited)
Dave Willock ... Jim's Aide (uncredited)
Victor Wong ... Chinese Passenger (uncredited)

Directed by
David Miller 
 
Writing credits
Kenneth Gamet (screenplay) &
Barry Trivers (screenplay)

Kenneth Gamet (original story)

Produced by
Edmund Grainger .... associate producer
 
Original Music by
Victor Young 
 
Cinematography by
Jack A. Marta (photography) (as Jack Marta)
 
Film Editing by
Ernest J. Nims  (as Ernest Nims)
 
Art Direction by
Russell Kimball 
 
Set Decoration by
Otto Siegel 
 
Makeup Department
Peggy Gray .... hair stylist (uncredited)
Bob Mark .... makeup supervisor (uncredited)
 
Production Management
Arthur Siteman .... unit production manager (uncredited)
Al Wilson .... production manager (uncredited)
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Philip Ford .... assistant director (uncredited)
George Sherman .... second unit director (uncredited)
 
Sound Department
Daniel J. Bloomberg .... sound (uncredited)
T.A. Carman .... sound editor (uncredited)
 
Special Effects by
Howard Lydecker .... special effects
Theodore Lydecker .... special effects (uncredited)
 
Stunts
Yakima Canutt .... stunt coordinator (uncredited)
Paul Mantz .... stunt pilot (uncredited)
 
Camera and Electrical Department
William Bradford .... location camera (uncredited)
Nels Mathias .... grip (uncredited)
Cliff Shirpser .... assistant camera (uncredited)
 
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Adele Palmer .... wardrobe
 
Music Department
Walter Scharf .... musical director
Herman Hand .... orchestrator (uncredited)
George Parrish .... orchestrator (uncredited)
Leo Shuken .... orchestrator (uncredited)
 
Other crew
John T. Bourke .... location manager (uncredited)
Sid Davis .... stand-in: John Wayne (uncredited)
Lawrence Moore .... technical advisor (uncredited)
Kenneth Sanger .... technical advisor (uncredited)
 
Thanks
William D. Pawley .... thanks: for the cooperation and technical assistance rendered by, co-founder of The American Volunteer Group
 
Crew verified as complete


Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
Runtime:
102 min | West Germany:90 min
Country:
Language:
Color:
Black and White (archive footage) | Black and White
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (RCA Sound System)
Certification:
Argentina:13 | Finland:K-16 | Sweden:15 | UK:PG | UK:A (original rating) | USA:Passed (National Board of Review) | USA:Approved (PCA #8468) | West Germany:12 (f)

Did You Know?

Trivia:
The Flying Tigers' planes were full-size mock-ups made mostly of plywood and balsa wood, not - as has often been thought - real aircraft. The "engine" noises were sound effects added after production.See more »
Goofs:
Continuity: When the burning cargo plane is waved off at the Rangoon airport, it has only the right landing gear down. Moments later the pilots are shown raising the left landing gear.See more »
Quotes:
Alabama Smith:How come you guys wear laundry tickets on your jackets?
'Mac' McIntosh:Oh, these aren't laundry tickets. This is in case you get shot down over Chinese territory, so they'll know you're an American volunteer.
Alabama Smith:What if you're shot down over JAPANESE territory?
'Mac' McIntosh:Then you've got nothing to worry about.
See more »
Movie Connections:
Spoofed in Hot Shots! (1991)See more »
Soundtrack:
That Old FeelingSee more »

FAQ

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
18 out of 18 people found the following review useful.
Wayne Goes To War, 8 June 2006
Author: Bill Slocum (bill.slocum@gmail.com) from Greenwich, CT United States

John Wayne's first war film was one of his best, a solid actioner with Wayne giving great presence as the leader of a fighter squadron doing battle against the Japanese invader over the skies of China in the dark days before the U.S. entry into World War II.

Wayne plays Jim "Pappy" Gordon, a variation on the many flinty-commander-with-heart-of-gold characters he would play in films to follow like "Sands Of Iwo Jima" and "Fighting Seabees." Gordon is less flinty than most of them, maybe because his men are volunteers or maybe because his girlfriend Brooke (Anna Lee) is stationed on the same airbase. While the Japanese take their toll on his men, Gordon's toughest job may be keeping peace in his squadron when smug gloryhog Woody Jason (John Carroll) arrives.

When I first saw "Flying Tigers" as a boy, the on-screen gore made the strongest impression. In those days, before pay television, it was something to see a Japanese pilot grab his face, blood oozing through his fingers. Times have changed, of course, but one is still impressed by the well-rendered dogfight sequences, for which Ted Lydecker was nominated for an Oscar. Though it's troubling to be entertained by what amounts to real images of people getting killed, director David Miller manages to incorporate actual combat footage very well into battle sequences that alternate with Lydecker miniature work and shots of actors in their cockpits, better than the more acclaimed director Nicholas Ray later did in another Wayne air war film, "Flying Leathernecks."

"Flying Tigers" contains one key historical inaccuracy: While assembled in the months before Pearl Harbor, the Tigers didn't see action until December 20, 1941. This is an important caveat, but the inaccuracy allows for one of the very first and best examples of that classic movie cliché, where a dramatic scene ends with a glimpse of a desk calendar showing the date "Dec. 7." The scene that follows is one of those Wayne moments that resonated especially in theaters in 1942 and still packs a punch now: Pappy alone by a radio, standing expressionless while a cigarette smolders in his fingers, listening to President Roosevelt declare war.

Neither Wayne's iconographic stature or final victory against the Japanese were sure things when "Flying Tigers" came out in 1942; we tend to take more for granted and give films like this less credit. Wayne was 35 and not a real soldier, yet he came to define the war effort for many. Judging from the way some comments here attack him as a straw dog for present U.S. war policy in Iraq, Wayne's potency as a symbol remains undimmed.

Climbing off his P-40 after an early mission, Wayne is shown a row of bullet holes on his fuselage. "Termites," he says laconically, before striding away.

I give a lot of credit here to Miller, who knew what he had in Wayne before anyone else did, and uses the actor's terse authority to great effect. Miller was making propaganda, yes, but effectively and sensitively: We see Chinese children victimized by war, including one shot of a wounded child crying after a bombing clearly modeled on a famous war photo of the period. Unlike other wartime films which went heavy on ethnic stereotyping, the Japanese are seen as skilled, ruthless adversaries who require resolve to face down.

The film does lose altitude at the end, when Wayne goes off on a hare-brained bombing mission and Carroll has a "why-we-fight" epiphany that rings rather hollow. Maybe it's because he's playing a heel, but I find Carroll hard to take, with his Clark Gable mannerisms and the way he seems to always play to the camera rather than the other actors. There's also a little too much melodrama between Wayne and Lee that feels out of place in a war film.

But "Flying Tigers" has weathered the years better than most films of its kind, and is a historic landmark both for its effective action scenes and its pioneering use of Wayne as cultural touchstone. More than 60 years later, it still packs a punch.

Was the above review useful to you?
See more (34 total) »

Message Boards

Discuss this movie with other users on IMDb message board for Flying Tigers (1942)
Recent Posts (updated daily)User
Why 'Gordon' instead of 'Chennault'? mobile707
Airliner portrayed in Flying Tigers lilmarci
Yet another (dreaded) call for a REMAKE. kdmagnusson
God is My Co-Pilot (1945) eThink
Only Angels have Wings ? fonteius
Aircraft used in Flying Tigers joan.murphy
See more »

Recommendations

If you enjoyed this title, our database also recommends:
- - - - -
Pearl Harbor The Fighting Seabees Captain America: The First Avenger Empire of the Sun Australia
IMDb User Rating:
IMDb User Rating:
IMDb User Rating:
IMDb User Rating:
IMDb User Rating:
Show more recommendations

Related Links

Full cast and crew Company credits External reviews
News articles IMDb Action section IMDb USA section

You may report errors and omissions on this page to the IMDb database managers. They will be examined and if approved will be included in a future update. Clicking the 'Edit page' button will take you through a step-by-step process.