Major Chick Davis proves to the U.S. Army the superiority of high altitude precision bombing, and establishes a school for bombardiers. Training is followed in semi-documentary style, with personal dramas in subplots. The climax is a spectacular, if somewhat jingoistic, battle sequence. Written by
Rod Crawford <firstname.lastname@example.org>
This film represents one of four movies made by Hollywood during the 1940s that were about or related to the US military's Dolittle Raid on Tokyo, Japan, during World War II. The four (the first three considered "fictionalized") are Destination Tokyo; The Purple Heart; this film; and Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo, the last being the most accurate and least fictionalized of the four. See more »
Near the end Randolph Scott drives a Japanese truck. The steering wheel should be on the right side of the truck since in Japan they drive on the left. See more »
"Song of the Bombardiers"
(1942) (published title)
On-screen title: "Song of the U. S. Bombardiers"
Music by M.K. Jerome (as M. K. Jerome)
Lyrics by Jack Scholl
Played during the opening and closing credits and often in the score
Sung by the audience at the magic show See more »
This 1943 film by RKO is among several that Hollywood and/or the War Department put out during the early months and years of World War II. It's a mix of genres. The war action comes at the end. A docu-drama style tells the story of the bombardier school and training. Hollywood adds its usual touch of romance, but lightly. The drama is there even in the training. And, of course, it's a propaganda film. Propaganda surely had its place in WWII to help sustain public morale, build support for the U.S. cause and efforts, and give the public a picture of some of the troops, training, and campaigns.
"Bombardier" tells and shows us the early days of training for this new position in the Army Air Forces precursor of the U.S. Air Force. As such, it's a good educational piece for the public, then and now. The men who went into combat in different roles weren't tossed together and sent into combat. They were trained first. And for some fields, the training was highly specialized and detailed. This film shows very well that detail, study and science that went into the training of bombardiers. These men indeed played a critical role in destroying enemy armament production, fuel depots and major supplies and in so doing, helped end the war much earlier than it would have otherwise concluded.
Many have said it since the first attribution to Civil War Gen. William T. Sherman, that "War is hell!" But once a nation is in a war, it should do everything possible to end it as soon as possible.
Many war movies have been made, especially about the two "great" world wars of the 20th century. They have variously focused on the action of troops in battles, assaults from the sea, naval engagements or air combat. Most give us a picture, however much Hollywood may "tweak" it, of the human conditions, relationships, and characters. Often times they include the strategic plans of real battle scenes. These are the things that most interest people, or "entertain" audiences for this genre. But films such as "Bombardier" add another value in educating and informing the public of what went into the readying of our nation for war, and our ability to win and end it as soon as possible.
As an Army paratrooper veteran, I enjoy learning about the "how-to" that men and women learn in the different combat and support specialties of our armed services. People who approach war movies in a similar frame of mind will be much more likely to enjoy them. I highly recommend "Bombardier" as an informative, action-filled and historical war movie.
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