A dramatization of the battle that was heralded as the turning point of the Pacific Theatre of World War II.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Capt. Matt Garth
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...
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Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto (as Toshiro Mifune)
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...
...
...
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Admiral Harry Pearson
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Christina Kokubo ...
Haruko Sakura
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Commander Max Leslie
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Captain Miles Browning
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Storyline

The summer of 1942 brought Naval stalemate to the Pacific as the American and Japanese fleets stood at even numbers each waiting for the other to begin a renewed offensive. "Midway" tells the story of this historic June battle where a Japanese carrier force, in an attempt to occupy Midway island and lure the American fleet to destruction, was meet valiently by US forces operating off of three aircraft carriers and numerous escort ships. It was the first battle in which naval air power was extensivly used, and at its conclusion the Japanese Carrier force had been completly destroyed which lead the way for the US 1943 and 44 offensives which would eventually bring the Pacific War to a close. Written by Anthony Hughes <husnock31@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The glory, the suspense, the spectacular drama of the men who won the most decisive naval battle in U.S. history. See more »

Genres:

Action | Drama | History | War

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

18 June 1976 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Battle of Midway  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Color:

(archive footage)| (archive footage)| (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Most sequences of the Japanese air raids on Midway are stock shots from 20th Century Fox's Tora! Tora! Tora! (1970) (for instance, the jeep thrown into a wall by a bomb blast). See more »

Goofs

As planes are taking off from Midway, mountains can be seen in the far background. There are no mountains on Midway, as it is a small atoll only 2.5 miles square miles. See more »

Quotes

Captain Vinton Maddox: Admiral, these enemy radio intercepts that your intelligence unit has been accumulating...
Admiral Nimitz: Very detailed, aren't they?
Captain Vinton Maddox: Too damned detailed, Admiral. Do you remember what happened just before December 7th?
Admiral Nimitz: The Japanese flooded the airwaves with fake messages.
Captain Vinton Maddox: Yes. These could be carbon copies. Washington's convinced that Yamamoto's feeding this stuff to you in order to cover his real intentions.
Admiral Nimitz: Very definite possibility.
Captain Vinton Maddox: Well then, sir, how can you still insist...
Admiral Nimitz: Because it is my judgement ...
[...]
See more »

Connections

Featured in The Making of 'Midway' (2001) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Torpid, Torpid, Torpid
18 September 2003 | by (Greenwich, CT United States) – See all my reviews

This has to be one of the slowest-moving war movies ever. And I was afraid of it back when it came out, because it was in Sensurround, which meant the woofers were tweaked low and you got to not only hear but feel every rumble as the bombs and torpedoes lit into the oil tanks and set the carriers ablaze. That was a pretty intimidating sound back in the day, lemme tell you. But that was a million years ago.

Midway was one of the greatest military battles ever, certainly the greatest naval contest of the greatest war ever, and as a conflict showcasing equal parts bravery, strategy, and luck. But this movie is a strange recreation that promotes aging 1970s star power over a coherent plot line. Most perplexing is the concentration on many over-the-hill American actors in telling the story of how the battle for Midway was won by the Red, White, and Blue. Charlton Heston carries much of the story, yet both his character and his actions are highly unrealistic. For a near-flag officer, we're asked to accept him called on in a pinch leading a dive-bombing squadron at such an advanced age. Henry Fonda scratches his head as Admiral Nimitz, stuck at Pearl Harbor as the war is fought hundreds of miles away, while Robert Mitchum's Admiral Halsey is confined to bed with a nasty skin condition, and Hal Halbrook as an intelligence chief seems to suffer from a bad case of BO. At least we were spared a John Wayne cameo, as an admiral who couldn't leave the john with a nasty case of hemorrhoids.

In movies about D-Day or Operation Market Garden, we got to see a little more of a few of the trenchline view, which enhanced our appreciation of what was endured as well as what was won (and lost). Here it's all a case of transferring flags and staring at maps by the highest commanders. Boardroom battles. Meanwhile, the Japanese high command seems populated exclusively by Arnold from "Happy Days," Jack Klugman's assistant in "Quincy," and assorted North and South Korean extras from "M*A*S*H." A nice sense of the decade, except that decade is the 1970s, not the 1940s.

It's a battle whose story deserves telling, but not with cutscenes from "Tora, Tora, Tora" and "The World At War." The tacked-on subplot with American-boy-loves-Japanese-girl feels suspect, like a politically-correct nod at inclusiveness at the expense of telling the story the way it happened. If they really wanted to be inclusive, it would have been a Zero pilot and his Yank girl, who swears she has nothing to do with awful FDR and his foul plans against Japan's Asian Co-Prosperity Sphere.

What else is there to lambaste? The ridiculous supers we get around various characters, including no less than three around the lone survivor and Kojak sidekick George Gay, as played by Kevin Dobson? The silly radio chatter among the American pilots, who sound more like American Top 40 DJs than warriors trying to sink the Imperial Navy? I like the occasional hints of verisimilitude we get, like the oil burns around the cowlings of Avengers about to launch, but the blue paint on the American jeeps and the Essex carriers that substitute for the Japanese fleet distract too much for any real enjoyment. Read Gordon Prange, and leave this be.


12 of 19 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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