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Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo (1944)

Passed | | Drama, History, War | November 1944 (USA)
In the wake of Pearl Harbor, a young lieutenant leaves his expectant wife to volunteer for a secret bombing mission which will take the war to the Japanese homeland.

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Writers:

(screen play), (based on the book) (as Captain Ted W. Lawson) | 1 more credit »
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Won 1 Oscar. Another 1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Tim Murdock ...
Dean Davenport
...
Charles McClure
Herbert Gunn ...
Bob Clever (as Gordon McDonald)
...
Ellen Lawson
...
'Doc' White (as Horace McNally)
...
John R. Reilly ...
'Shorty' Manch
...
Scott McKay ...
Davey Jones
...
Lieut. Randall
...
Lieut. Miller
William 'Bill' Phillips ...
Don Smith (as Wm. 'Bill' Phillips)
...
'Brick' Holstrom
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Storyline

The amazingly detailed true story of "The Doolittle Raid" based on the personal account by Doolittle Raider Ted Lawson. Stunned by Pearl Harbor and a string of defeats, America needed a victory - badly. To that end, Colonel Jimmy Doolittle, a former air racer and stunt pilot, devises a plan for a daring raid on the heart of Japan itself. To do this, he must train army bomber pilots to do something no one ever dreamed possible - launch 16 fully loaded bombers from an aircraft carrier! Remarkable in its accuracy, this movie even uses film footage from the actual raid. Written by KC Hunt <khunt@eng.morgan.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Heart-Warming Romance . . . Stark, Sensational Drama! Thrills! Action! Adventure! ...Ripped From The Heart!

Genres:

Drama | History | War

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

November 1944 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Trinta Segundos Sobre Tóquio  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Twice while the Ruptured Duck is flying over Japan the crew spots Japanese fighter planes and tenses for an attack, but both times the fighters ignore them. This is factual. In an unbelievable coincidence, the Japanese had planned a major air raid drill for the same time in Tokyo, and the fighters thought the American B-25s were part of the drill until the bombs started exploding. Also, according to the book upon which the movie is based the planes' crews were told prior to the mission that there was a slight chance that the Japanese would not recognize them and react because the Japanese air force had a bomber very similar to the B-25. See more »

Goofs

The leather flight jackets worn by most of the flying personnel in the film were close commercial copies of military A-2 flight jackets. Authentic military-contract A-2 jackets had a one-piece back, without a horizontal seam across the shoulders. Most of the jackets in the film have a seam across the back. See more »

Quotes

Lt. Bob Gray: [pensively] When I was a kid, I used to dream about going someplace on a ship. Well, here I am!
Lt. Ted Lawson: And out there is Japan. My mother had a Jap gardener once. He seemed like a nice little guy.
Lt. Bob Gray: You know I don't hate Japs yet. It's a funny thing. I don't like them, but I don't hate them.
Lt. Ted Lawson: I guess, I don't either. You get kind of mixed up.
Lt. Bob Gray: Yeah.
Lt. Ted Lawson: It's hard to figure, yet here we are.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Trumbo (2015) See more »

Soundtracks

Chattanooga Choo Choo
(1941) (uncredited)
Music by Harry Warren
Lyrics by Mack Gordon
Played on radio in the barracks
See more »

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User Reviews

Great WWII Flick!
12 August 2004 | by (San Antonio, Texas) – See all my reviews

I felt this was a great movie. Having read "I Could Never Be So Lucky Again" by Jimmy Doolittle, I am happy to report that the film's storyline is very much like the events actually unfolded. I thought that Vance Johnson did a great job with "Lawson" as well as his supporting cast. The special effects for the film seem to be ahead of their time. The flying, bombing, and ship sequences are very good for the 1940's. Although some of the characters may seem "campy" (especially Cpl. Thatcher) with today's movie characters, they do reflect the way that movies were made during WWII. It is nice just to see the B-25's that they used in the film since not many exist anymore. If you ever get a chance to see one in person I would suggest doing so; it really gives you a sense of what these brave men actually dealt with on a daily basis. This movie is a must see for any history buff.


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