MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Up 23,568 this week

Thunder Birds: Soldiers of the Air (1942)

Approved  |   |  Drama, Romance, War  |  19 October 1942 (USA)
6.3
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 6.3/10 from 240 users  
Reviews: 11 user | 3 critic

A veteran American flyer trains new recruits, including the acrophobic son of his dead war buddy. Complications arise when the younger man falls in love with his mentor's girl.

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay), (original story) (as Melville Crossman) , 1 more credit »
0Check in
0Share...

On Disc

at Amazon

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 1342 titles
created 28 Mar 2011
 
a list of 6955 titles
created 01 Apr 2013
 
a list of 53 titles
created 14 May 2013
 
a list of 37 titles
created 29 Aug 2013
 
a list of 215 titles
created 9 months ago
 

Related Items

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: Thunder Birds: Soldiers of the Air (1942)

Thunder Birds: Soldiers of the Air (1942) on IMDb 6.3/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Thunder Birds: Soldiers of the Air.
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Certificate: Passed Drama | Romance | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Elderly schoolteacher Nora Trinell, waiting to meet presidential nominee Dewey Roberts, recalls him as her student back in 1916 and his relation to Dan Hopkins, the man she married and lost.

Director: Henry King
Stars: Claudette Colbert, John Payne, Shepperd Strudwick
War | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.4/10 X  

An American OSS agent and the French underground attempt to rescue a Nazi general, who is awaiting execution by the Germans, and help him escape to London.

Director: George Sherman
Stars: Van Johnson, Jean-Pierre Aumont, Dany Carrel
Roxie Hart (1942)
Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

To try and kick-start her show-business career, our heroine admits to a Chicago murder. But although Cook County don't seem to let dames swing, and even with top slippery lawyer Billy Flynn... See full summary »

Director: William A. Wellman
Stars: Ginger Rogers, Adolphe Menjou, George Montgomery
Swamp Water (1941)
Crime | Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A hunter happens upon a fugitive and his daughter living in a Georgia swamp. He falls in love with the girl and persuades the fugitive to return to town.

Directors: Jean Renoir, Irving Pichel
Stars: Walter Brennan, Walter Huston, Anne Baxter
Dragonwyck (1946)
Drama | Thriller | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

A simple Connecticut farm girl is recruited by a distant relative, an aristocratic patroon, to be governess to his young daughter in his Hudson Valley mansion.

Director: Joseph L. Mankiewicz
Stars: Gene Tierney, Walter Huston, Vincent Price
Crime | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Barbara Vining is 17 years old and living with her family in a 1950s postwar English village. Her father, Henry, is a newspaper journalist and mother, Vi, a homemaker; her maiden aunt, ... See full summary »

Director: Anthony Pelissier
Stars: Gene Tierney, Leo Genn, Glynis Johns
Lust for Gold (1949)
Certificate: Passed Adventure | Crime | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Fortune seeker Barry Storm stumbles onto some clues that may lead him to the fabulous Lost Durchman Mine, but others have tried and been murdered.

Directors: S. Sylvan Simon, George Marshall
Stars: Ida Lupino, Glenn Ford, Gig Young
Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Out on patrol in the war-time desert a Canadian corporal reminisces about the woman he has left behind in London and ponders whether she will fall for the charms of his rival in love. At ... See full summary »

Director: John M. Stahl
Stars: Henry Fonda, Maureen O'Hara, Thomas Mitchell
Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Newly remarried woman finds her businessman husband boring and runs into her wealthy playboy first husband.

Director: Walter Lang
Stars: Tyrone Power, Loretta Young, Stuart Erwin
War | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

Members of the French underground resistance, live their "normal" lives during the day, and fight the occupying Nazis in the war-torn Paris after dark. Some will end their lives fighting, and some will find purpose in life once again.

Director: Léonide Moguy
Stars: George Sanders, Philip Dorn, Brenda Marshall
Hudson's Bay (1941)
Adventure | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Highly fictionalized early history of Canada. Trapper/explorer Radisson imagines an empire around Hudson's Bay. He befriends the Indians, fights the French, and convinces King Charles II to sponsor an expedition of conquest.

Director: Irving Pichel
Stars: Paul Muni, Gene Tierney, Laird Cregar
Day-Time Wife (1939)
Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

When a young wife discovers her husband of two years is involved with his beautiful secretary, she applies for a job as secretary to a business rival.

Director: Gregory Ratoff
Stars: Tyrone Power, Linda Darnell, Warren William
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Preston Foster ...
Steve Britt
John Sutton ...
Peter Stackhouse
...
Colonel MacDonald
...
Lady Jane Stackhouse
George Barbier ...
Col. Cyrus P. 'Gramps' Saunders
...
George Lockwood
...
Barrett
Ted North ...
Cadet Hackzell
Janis Carter ...
Blonde Red Cross Nurse Trainee
C. Montague Shaw ...
Doctor
Viola Moore ...
Nurse
Nana Bryant ...
Mrs. Blake
...
Saleswoman
Bess Flowers ...
Nurse
Edit

Storyline

Technicolor tale of honor and romance. This drama from 1942 was directed by Oscar-winner William A. Wellman, and features stunning aerial photography, that was highly advanced for the time. John Sutton stars as Peter Stackhouse, a British aviophobe who is nonetheless determined to become a pilot. Stackhouse's resolution comes from his desire to serve his country, and his strength is recognized by Steve Britt (Preston Foster), who becomes his patient teacher. The two men's bond is tested, however, when they both fall for the same girl (Gene Tierney). Written by R. Alberts

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Romance | War

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

19 October 1942 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Thunder Birds  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The film takes place entirely in Arizona, but the theme running throughout the movie, including the party scene, is the song "Deep in the Heart of Texas." See more »

Quotes

Peter Stackhouse: I hope you're not angry?
Kay Saunders: That you were interested in my legs? Why not at all. That's what they're there for.
See more »

Soundtracks

People Like You and Me
(uncredited)
Music by Harry Warren
Played by the band at the USO dance
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Britt and the Brit
12 July 2011 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Though little remembered today and garnering only the briefest of mentions in Gene Tierney's own "Self-Portrait" autobiography, 1942's "Thunder Birds," the actress' ninth film, is assuredly deserving of a greater renown. In this one, Gene plays Kay Saunders, the granddaughter of an Arizona ranch owner whose property is adjacent to the U.S. Army flying school known as Thunderbird Field (at which the picture was partially filmed). Kay's life itself is thrown up in the air when her old flame, flying ace Steve Britt (played with an appealing mix of heart and toughness by Preston Foster), decides to become a civilian instructor at the school. It is made even more problematic when she falls in love with Peter Stackhouse (hunky John Sutton, who had been featured in Gene's second film, "Hudson's Bay"), a British doctor with a fear of heights who is determined to become a pilot under Britt's instruction. Thus, the "eternal triangle" is formed again, while Stackhouse learns that it might be easier to master his Stearman PT-17 biwing than his own physical and emotional responses....

Very much a product of its time and surely a live-action poster ad for our brave young men who would one day win WW2 for the Allies (although, back in 1942, that outcome, it must be remembered, was far from certain), "Thunder Birds" yet offers some very real pleasures for the audience of today. Shot in supersaturated Technicolor, the film looks marvelous, and features some truly eye-popping aerial cinematography. William A. Wellman, a veteran of WW1's Lafayette Escadrille who would go on to become a stunt pilot before embarking on a filmmaking career, was of course the perfect director to bring this film in for a safe landing. He had previously worked on such high-flying adventures as 1927's "Wings" (the first Oscar winner for Best Picture) and the almost-impossible-to-see "Central Airport," and would go on to direct the John Wayne pictures "Island in the Sky" and "The High and the Mighty," as well as his final film, 1958's "Lafayette Escadrille" (AND, parenthetically, the 1948 Tierney vehicle "The Iron Curtain"). Besides the eye-popping nature of the aerial cinematography, "Thunder Birds" features still another eye-popping aspect, and that is Gene Tierney herself, who has rarely looked more beautiful on screen. Gene made 20 films in the 1940s, and of those 20, only five were in color: "The Return of Frank James" (her first), "Belle Starr," "Thunder Birds," "Heaven Can Wait" and "Leave Her to Heaven," and other than "Leave Her to Heaven" (in which, gorgeous as she is, she is yet eclipsed, IMHO, by the vision that is Jeanne Crain), I have never seen her look more ravishing than here. Just look at her bathing in an outdoor water tank, her mouth still painted with bright-red lipstick; simply stunning! And Wellman, wisely, gives the 22-year-old Tierney any number of luminous close-ups; absolute heaven for all fans of the beloved actress. Throw in a compact story line (the whole film runs only 78 minutes) and fine supporting work from such wonderful character actors as Dame May Witty, Jack Holt, Richard Haydn and Reginald Denny and you've got yourself quite an entertaining package indeed; surely more than just some rah-rah wartime propaganda! This is a highly entertaining, time-capsule tribute to some very brave young men as well as to the beauty and talent of one very special actress: Miss Gene Tierney.


5 of 5 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
the 1942 movie Thunder birds danb_89
Thunder Birds & Pearl Harbor chaplinpricefan

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?