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Tora! Tora! Tora! (1970)

A dramatization of the Japanese attack on the U.S. naval base at Pearl Harbor and the series of American blunders that allowed it to happen.

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(screenplay), (screenplay) | 3 more credits »
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Won 1 Oscar. Another 1 win & 7 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto (as Soh Yamamura)
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Admiral Chuici Nagumo (as Eijiro Tono)
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Lt. Commander Alvin D. Kramer
Shôgo Shimada ...
Ambassador Kichisaburo Nomura (as Shogo Shimada)
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Lt. Commander Thomas
Koreya Senda ...
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Jun Usami ...
Admiral Zengo Yoshida (as Junya Usami)
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Storyline

This dramatic retelling of the Pearl Harbor attack details everything in the days that led up to that tragic moment in American history. As United States and Japanese relations strain over the U.S. embargo of raw materials, Air Staff Officer Minoru Genda (Tatsuya Mihashi) plans the preemptive strike against the United States. Although American intelligence agencies intercept Japanese communications hinting at the attack, they are unwilling to believe such a strike could ever occur on U.S. soil. Written by Jwelch5742

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

From 20th Century Fox. The most spectacle film ever made. See more »

Genres:

Action | Drama | History | War

Certificate:

G | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

|

Release Date:

23 September 1970 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Тора! Тора! Тора!  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$25,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$14,500,000 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (Extended Japanese Edition 2009)

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System) (70 mm prints)| (some 35 mm prints)| (some 35 mm prints)

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Germany and Italy declared war on the US four days after the attack. Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini could no longer ignore the amount of economic and military aid being given by the US to the British Empire and the Soviet Union. The war declaration made it possible for German and Italian U-Boats to commence the "Second Happy Time" against American ships carrying war munitions and other supplies to the UK and the USSR. Under the terms of the Tripartite Pact, Germany and Italy would have been expected to declare war anyway when the US counterattacked Japan. See more »

Goofs

The USS Oklahoma switches back and forth from being completely upside-down with only her hull above water to being half-capsized, many times in the attack sequence. In fact, the film ends with the Oklahoma only partially capsized, while earlier in the film, she had already completely 'turned turtle' once. Furthermore, real photographs of the Oklahoma after it had capsized show her hull very low in the water with only one propeller partially out of the water, while in the film, the capsized battleship seems to be quite high over the water. See more »

Quotes

[Ramsey and Lieutenant Ballinger have dashed into Ford Island's administration building and over to a seaman manning the building's telegraph station]
Captain Logan C. Ramsey: Alert, all commands: Air raid. Pearl Harbor. This is no drill.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The 20th Century Fox logo does not appear on this film. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Säg att du älskar mig (2006) See more »

Soundtracks

At Last
Music by Harry Warren
Played during the cocktail party on Saturday night, Dec. 6.
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
A Date Which Will Live In Infamy
14 August 2007 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

The real story of Pearl Harbor may have begun in 1853 when a squadron of U.S. frigates under Matthew C. Perry forced open the isolationist Tokugawa shogunate that governed Japan to take a reality check and open trade with the outside world. In less than 100 years Japan became an industrial power, every bit as formidable as any western country and was able to attack the country that forced it open.

Our Far eastern foreign policy from then until 1941 was simply trading concessions with both Asian powers, Japan and China. When they became rivals in Asia we and other countries had to choose up sides. Alternately we favored China and Japan, but in 1941 U.S. sympathies in Washington and in public opinion was favoring China.

The island chain of Japan is notoriously lacking in natural resources. Even the United Kingdom which it is often compared to has deposits of coal and iron and that created the British steel industry. Japan has to import and in the age of imperialism, they became every bit as imperialistic as any of our western countries, maybe more so because their need was greater.

Note during the film of Tora Tora Tora it is remarked that the U.S. Fleet in Hawaii was like a dagger pointed at Japan. When the island country of Hawaii was formally annexed to the United States and the Phillipines acquired after the Spanish American War at the end of the 19th century we became rivals in the Pacific to the Japanese. And imagine if the Japanese who were most anxious to annex Hawaii themselves had done so. The dagger would have been at our West Coast. Of course the poor Hawaiians had little to say about any of this.

All that has to be factored into what you are seeing in Tora Tora Tora. That and more is what led up to the events that are meticulously recorded in documentary style. Unlike the later film Midway which spoiled a good account of the battle with a personal story, Tora Tora Tora does not waste any of the viewers time in that regard.

The participants are there in all their flaws. Admiral Husband Kimmel who made the fortunate choice of sending out the aircraft carriers which was an act that may have eventually won the Pacific War for America is played by Martin Balsam. Nevertheless he took the fall for the attack as did Chief of Naval Operations Harold Stark played by Edward Andrews.

One very luckless man was Army commander in Hawaii General Joseph Short played by Jason Robards, Jr. who was in real life in the Navy and at Pearl Harbor. Short made the fatal decision to put all the aircraft at Hickam field in the center of the field because he was afraid of saboteurs. The better to bomb them from the air.

Three members of FDR's cabinet are portrayed, George MacReady as Secretary of State Cordell Hull, Joseph Cotten as Secretary of War Henry L. Stimson, and Leon Ames as Frank Knox the Secretary of the Navy. Franklin Roosevelt being the wise leader he was and knowing that our eventual entry demanded bipartisan support chose a pair of Republicans in Stimson and Knox. Would that our current president had that kind of foresight.

George MacReady who usually portrayed polished villains is a good guy here and has one of his best screen moments as the Japanese envoys are ushered into his office AFTER the attack has begun to issue Japanese diplomatic demands.

Tora Tora Tora should be shown in schools as a great piece of well acted documentary film making if that's not a contradiction in terms. It won an Oscar for Special Effects which are out of date compared to the later Pearl Harbor movie, but still done well. Catch it if you can by all means.


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