Lt. Col. Robert (Dutch) Holland was a third baseman for the St. Louis Cardinals, not a pitcher. While at spring training a B-36 flew over the field and Dutch was standing on third base. Brewster was his third base replacement when he, Dutch was re-called to duty. The movie clearly depicts this. Written by
When Col. Holland can't move his arm when approaching Kadena, he has the co-pilot work the throttles for the landing. Earlier in the movie, he allowed Rocky to make a landing at MacDill from the back seat, so why didn't he let Leo make the landing at Kadena? Since they were on instruments anyway, it would not have been a problem for Leo to make the landing from the back seat. See more »
[Seeing General Hawkes speaking to the men on the flight line while smoking a cigar, whispering to Holland]
Sir, that cigar. Doesn't the general know that the aircraft might explode?
Lt. Col. Robert 'Dutch' Holland:
It wouldn't dare.
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I'll be very quick to admit that this is NOT a film that would appeal to everyone. In fact, those who love the film are probably in the minority. So why did I like the film so much and consider it among Jimmy Stewart's best films? Well, I love airplanes as well as history and this film is a great lesson about the beginnings of the Strategic Air Command that was created after WWII in response to Soviet expansion. From the historical standpoint and combined with some of the very best aviation footage ever created, it's a fantastic film. Just watching the B-36 and B-47s flying in very vivid color (VISTAVISION) on a large screen is very inspiring and breathtaking to air aficionados. About the only downside, and this is only a minor gripe, is that occasionally the story itself involving Stewart and his wife, June Allyson, seems a tiny bit hokey. However, overall, this is a wonderful film.
UPDATE--After doing this review, I later read some of the other reviews and was very surprised with one that said how unbelievable the older Jimmy Stewart was in the film! This was pretty funny, since Stewart was in the air force reserves and did fly these planes for real--even eventually retiring as a brigadier general well after this movie was made. So apparently, at least according to some, Stewart wasn't believable even though he DID fly SAC bombers in real life!
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