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Air Force Colonel Shannon is assigned to escort defecting Soviet pilot Anna. He falls in love with her, but she is scheming to lure him back to the USSR. But Shannon has a scheme of his own. Written by
Jim Beaver <email@example.com>
The F-86A Sabre jets depicted in the early sequences were actual operational aircraft of the 94th Fighter Squadron, the first unit so equipped in the U.S. Air Force, shortly after their conversion to the type in 1949. See more »
The aircraft making the night interception on the B-36 was an F-94C. In later scenes, doing the "break off" and turn away, it was clearly an F-80 or T-33. The empennages are much different as the F-94C had an afterburner configuration also. This was not seen markedly protruding as would be seen on an F-94C. See more »
Lt. Anna Marladovna Shannon:
[When asked why a fellow Russian has ejected from an aircraft sitting on the runway]
He made a mistake. He pulled the seat ejector instead of the seat adjuster.
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Advertising carried the credits "Starring John Wayne, Janet Leigh, and the United States Air Force." See more »
Gruff US pilot assists female Russian pilot to defect.
Howard Hughes produced this ahead-of-its-time film in the late 1940's, but couldn't get it released until US Air Force clearance was approved in 1957. It sat on a shelf in storage for 8 years until its release. John Wayne is his usual macho self, an American flyer, ladies man, infatuated with a Russian pilot who treats him like a spy. A very young Janet Leigh is the pilot who falls in love with tough-guy Wayne and agrees to defect to the US as his wife.
The special effects in this film are quite convincing in spite of its age. Of course, the US Air Force helped everywhere needed to make the picture seem real. Thought that the idea of a female Russian pilot was interesting since the movie was made long before women's lib.
John Wayne and Janet Leigh are especially good together as are the usual cast of colorful characters who help pad out the storyline. This is one of my favorite John Wayne pictures. He is surprisingly natural in his performance with a light touch of good humor thrown in for good measure. Most any John Wayne fan would enjoy this film heartily.
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