6.3/10
278
11 user 3 critic

Thunder Birds: Soldiers of the Air (1942)

Approved | | Drama, Romance, War | 19 October 1942 (USA)
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)
Reviews

Watch Now

From $1.99 (SD) on Amazon Video

ON DISC

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Tobacco Road (1941)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Hillbilly family life in 1941 rural Georgia.

Director: John Ford
Stars: Charley Grapewin, Gene Tierney, Marjorie Rambeau
Belle Starr (1941)
Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

At the end of the Civil War, Southern beauty Belle Shirley, indignant at the way Yankees treat the Southerners, marries Confederate guerrilla leader Sam Starr and continues to raid Union towns, becoming a symbol of Southern resistance.

Director: Irving Cummings
Stars: Randolph Scott, Gene Tierney, Dana Andrews
Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Susan Miller works behind the girdle counter in a department store and dreams about the beautiful clothes and glamour she can never hope to have. Enter May Worthington and Warren, a pair of... See full summary »

Director: Rouben Mamoulian
Stars: Henry Fonda, Gene Tierney, Laird Cregar
Sundown (1941)
War | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

In 1941, a mysterious Somaliland native woman helps the British against the Nazis.

Director: Henry Hathaway
Stars: Gene Tierney, Bruce Cabot, George Sanders
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A young woman, Poppy, out for excitement in Shanghai, enters a gambling house owned by "Mother" Gin Sling, a dragon-lady who worked herself up from poverty to buy the casino. Sir Guy ... See full summary »

Director: Josef von Sternberg
Stars: Gene Tierney, Walter Huston, Victor Mature
Biography | Crime | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

The story of Soviet cypher-clerk Igor Gouzenko who was posted to the Soviet Embassy in Ottawa,Canada in 1943 and defected in 1945 to reveal the extent of Soviet espionage activities directed against Canada.

Director: William A. Wellman
Stars: Dana Andrews, Gene Tierney, June Havoc
Comedy | Drama | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

An old roué arrives in Hades to review his life with Satan, who will rule on his eligibility to enter the Underworld.

Director: Ernst Lubitsch
Stars: Gene Tierney, Don Ameche, Charles Coburn
Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

In 1871 a convict escapes, with other prisoners, to kill the man that framed him, but has second thoughts after meeting the man's beautiful future wife.

Director: Michael Gordon
Stars: Glenn Ford, Gene Tierney, Ethel Barrymore
Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

When an heiress finds out that the friendly young man she's met at Sun Valley is really an investigative reporter, she ruins his career by falsely claiming they're married.

Director: Robert B. Sinclair
Stars: Tyrone Power, Gene Tierney, Reginald Gardiner
China Girl (1942)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

In November 1941, American news photographer Johnny 'Bugsy' Williams manages to escape from the Japanese and finds himself back in Burma where he meets the beautiful Miss Haoli Young. ... See full summary »

Director: Henry Hathaway
Stars: Gene Tierney, George Montgomery, Lynn Bari
Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

Senate investigation into the President's newly nominated Secretary of State, gives light to a secret from the past, which may not only ruin the candidate, but the President's character as well.

Director: Otto Preminger
Stars: Franchot Tone, Lew Ayres, Henry Fonda
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
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Steve Britt
...
Peter Stackhouse
...
Colonel MacDonald
...
Lady Jane Stackhouse
...
Col. Cyrus P. 'Gramps' Saunders
...
George Lockwood
...
Barrett
...
Cadet Hackzell
...
Blonde Red Cross Nurse Trainee
...
Doctor
Viola Moore ...
Nurse
...
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

Taglines:

For two pilots, one woman became a conflict of interest.

Genres:

Drama | Romance | War

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

19 October 1942 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Tommy in the U.S.A.  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The movie is set and second unit filming takes place at Thunderbird Field, later renamed Thunderbird Field No. 1 after completion of a second field with the same name. It was located on Greenway Road and 59th Avenue in Glendale, Arizona and is today home for the Thunderbird Global School of Management.

The field was built by Del Webb in 1939 and was a business investment for several actors and producers including Jimmy Stewart. 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

Deep in the Heart of Texas
(uncredited)
Lyrics by June Hershey
Music by Don Swander
Played when Steve tells Gramps he's going to be living right next door
Played often in the score
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Gene Tierney as a symbol of "what we fight for"
16 June 2010 | by (Padova, Italy) – See all my reviews

"Thunder Birds" is an innocuous movie of war propaganda, made by W.A. Wellmann, a first- rate director, with his usual professionalism. The locations are beautiful, the Technicolor is outstanding, and the flying scenes are accurately shot. The story is standard, a nice blend of adventure-action and comedy, with some good emotional scenes in the part placed in England, dominated by Dame May Witty.

What makes "Thunder Birds" special, and its message stronger, is the use of Gene Tierney as a symbol. Yes, she is called to represent exactly "what we fight for". We (the young men from America, Great Britain, China) fight for that dream of a girl, for her smile, for the hot dogs we devour with her, for her nylon stockings, for our freedom and prosperity that she embodies. And she doesn't leave us alone, like a damned arrogant European princess. She helps and supports us, with a merry smile and without any conceit. Here, among us, there's no room for the gruesome death-rhetoric of the barbarian killers we fight.

To be honest, I admit that anyone out of the mass of splendid American actresses of the 1940s could play the role of Gene Tierney in "Thunder Birds", with excellent results. But only with the Goddess of Beauty, shining on the screen, all the parameters go to infinity.


13 of 13 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?