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Flying Leathernecks (1951)

 -  Drama | War | Action  -  28 August 1951 (USA)
6.4
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Ratings: 6.4/10 from 3,025 users  
Reviews: 33 user | 15 critic

Major Kirby leads The Wildcats squadron into the historic WWII battle of Guadalcanal.

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Writers:

(screenplay), (story), 1 more credit »
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Title: Flying Leathernecks (1951)

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
Capt. Carl 'Griff' Griffin
Don Taylor ...
Janis Carter ...
Joan Kirby
...
MSgt. Clancy, Line Chief
William Harrigan ...
Dr. Lt.Cdr. Joe Curran
James Bell ...
Colonel
Barry Kelley ...
Brigadier General
Maurice Jara ...
Shorty Vegay
...
Lt. Bert Malotke
James Dobson ...
Lt. Pudge McCabe
Carleton Young ...
Col. Riley
Michael St. Angel ...
Capt. Harold Jorgensen, Ops. Officer (as Steve Flagg)
Brett King ...
1st Lt. Ernie Stark
Gordon Gebert ...
Tommy Kirby
Edit

Storyline

Major Daniel Kirby takes command of a squadron of Marine fliers just before they are about to go into combat. While the men are well meaning, he finds them undisciplined and prone to always finding excuses to do what is easy rather than what is necessary. The root of the problem is the second in command, Capt. Carl 'Griff' Griffin. Griff is the best flier in the group but Kirby finds him a poor commander who is not prepared to the difficult decision that all commanders have to make - to put men in harm's way knowing that they may be killed. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

From Guadalcanal to Okinawa...the Marine air-devils blazed a trail of glory...while the women they left behind fought battles of their own! (1956 reissue poster) See more »

Genres:

Drama | War | Action

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

28 August 1951 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Devil Dogs of the Air  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Color:

(archive footage)| (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film utilized actual color aerial battle footage. According to the book "Brassey's Guide to War Films", this movie utilized combat footage from newsreels of the Korean War [the Korean War was fought in its entirety between 1950-1953 but the footage would be circa 1950-1951 due to the production dates of the film]. Yet this is a World War II movie about the Battle of Guadalcanal which predates the Korean War. See more »

Goofs

Near the end of the movie, just prior to Kirby (John Wayne) boarding the plane to leave, we see a wounded soldier being loaded onto a 2 engine C-47. In the next scene as Kirby is boarding the plane and is saying farewell to Griff (Robert Ryan), at the ladder, the plane is a 4 engine C-54. See more »

Connections

Referenced in M*A*S*H: L.I.P. (Local Indigenous Personnel) (1973) See more »

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User Reviews

 
A hell of a way to run a war.
11 August 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

"Flying Leathernecks" takes an old theme, namely, a struggle between commanders and their subordinates about how to conduct a mission, but treats it rather lamely compared with other films. "Leathernecks" tries to cover too much territory in advancing the cause of air combat Marines as a documentary and establishing a personal story line within a Marine unit.

A subplot concerning one commander's over-identification with his men has resonances with "Twelve O'Clock High," but is not explored to the extent of the latter picture. Again, the result of trying to cover too much ground in one film.

Two Clark Gable pictures, "Command Decision" and "Run Silent, Run Deep," are much stronger in their depiction of such conflict. Even better still are films like "The Caine Mutiny" and "Crimson Tide."


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