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The Wings of Eagles (1957)

6.8
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Ratings: 6.8/10 from 2,133 users  
Reviews: 28 user | 8 critic

A biography of Navy flier-turned-screenwriter Frank W. "Spig" Wead.

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Writers:

(screenplay), (screenplay), 1 more credit »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
'Jughead' Carson
...
Min Wead
...
...
John Dale Price
...
Adm. Moffett
...
Capt. Herbert Allen Hazard
James Todd ...
Jack Travis
Barry Kelley ...
Capt. Jock Clark
Sig Ruman ...
Manager
Henry O'Neill ...
Capt. Spear
...
Barton
...
Rose Brentmann
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Storyline

U.S. Navy pilot Frank 'Spig' Wead is a fun-loving and rowdy adventurer, but also a fierce proponent of Naval aviation. His dedication to the promotion of the Navy's flying program is so intense that his marriage and family life suffer. When an accident paralyzes him, Spig finds a new means of expressing his love of flying: screenwriting. Successful and acclaimed, he finds the U.S. entry into World War II to be an irresistible call. Pleading that he be reinstated in the Navy despite his paralysis, Spig finds he has an enormous contribution yet to make. Written by Jim Beaver <jumblejim@prodigy.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

A NEW TRIUMPH FOR WHAT-A-GUY WAYNE! (original print ad - all caps) See more »

Genres:

Biography | Drama | War

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

22 February 1957 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

L'aigle vole au soleil  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)|

Color:

(Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

After John Dodge (the fictional version of John Ford) gives Spig a job writing for his studio, he is led out to his new office to begin work and passes in front of numerous actors' head shots. John Wayne pauses for a beat in front of one of his earliest head shots before continuing. See more »

Goofs

When on board the aircraft carrier, as "Spig" Wead (John Wayne) is leaving the ship, a plane is being towed in the background. The national insignia on the side of the aircraft is incorrect. There was no red stripe in the white bars that bordered the star during WWII. This version did not come into being until after the war. See more »

Quotes

Min Wead: [Phones rings while their cuddling] Let it ring
Frank W. 'Spig' Wead: Why not, It probably just Washington, oh I forgot, you know you're in the arms of the new sergeant commander in the United States Navy.
Min Wead: Star Spangled Spad
Frank W. 'Spig' Wead: And a squad leader
Min Wead: All I know is I'm in the arms with a fellow name spig that I'm nuts about. Hey! How about getting back to your necking with a little more enthusiasm.
Frank W. 'Spig' Wead: Right!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in John Wayne: On Board with the Duke (1997) See more »

Soundtracks

Aloha Oe
(uncredited)
Written by Queen Liliuokalani
Heard as Spig leaves his carrier
See more »

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User Reviews

Touches Me
28 July 2002 | by (Memphis, TN, USA) – See all my reviews

I have two fav John Wayne movies and this is one of them. The other is "McLintock!"

Today is the first time I've seen "Wings of Eagles, The" for years and years. Probably because it's always been such an emotional movie for me. I always cry at the ending...most likely because the very thing Spig Wead wanted seemed to elude him. Perhaps because his desire was never really clearly defined, even to him.

As I sat watching it, I got the bright idea of looking it up in the "IMDB" movie database. I was curious about the writing that Wead did and also the timeline. I came across a couple of reviews and decided to add my two sense (sic) worth.

I realized today that the things I like about the movie were partially the things that one of the other reviewers didn't. I LIKE the way Wead's story is presented. It isn't neat and orderly. No cheating endings or story movement. It seems like he was very self-involved and dealt better with other men than with his wife. I suspect that both Spig and Min were trapped by their societal roles in a way that many others were at that time. They did't have that same open way of spilling their guts that we've all embraced in today's world.

Men were men and women...weren't! LOL!

Anyway, I was always crazy about John Wayne and had such a crush on him whenever he'd appear in Navy whites. Something about that craggy face and those blue eyes grabbed me every time. Plus, I share his birthday so that made him extra kewl in my eyes.

Ford was wise NOT to turn this into a typical John "Hero" Wayne vehicle. That was probably why they worked so well together in all of those films. He was no more snowed by Wayne's larger than life personna than Wayne was of Ford's. I would love to have been a fly on the wall when those two were goin' at it.

Although Wayne was fiftyish when he did this film, I think he displayed a good youthful Wead as well as the somewhat more mature one. A better, more subtle acting job than the other reviewer gave him credit for doing.

Time for Spig to bite it so I'm off now...

dmombit


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