6.7/10
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7 user 1 critic

Enola Gay: The Men, the Mission, the Atomic Bomb (1980)

Well-intentioned history lesson; the decision to drop the atom bomb, the secrecy surrounding the mission, and the men who flew it.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Lieutenant Jacob 'Jake' Beser
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Lucy Tibbets
...
...
Major Tom Ferebee
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Captain Bob Lewis
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Major Wiiliam 'Bud' Uanna
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Sergeant Shug Crawford
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Captain William 'Deke' Parsons
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Field Marshall Abehata
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Richard Venture ...
Alexander Sachs
...
...
Secretary of War Stimson
Stephen Roberts ...
...
Captain Claude Eatherly
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Storyline

Well-intentioned history lesson; the decision to drop the atom bomb, the secrecy surrounding the mission, and the men who flew it.

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Release Date:

23 November 1980 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Enola Gay  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Goofs

The other pilots refer to Captain Bob Lewis as having been Tibbets' "fair-haired boy on two continents." While Lewis was an experienced test pilot, he had not yet served overseas at that point. See more »

Quotes

Colonel Paul Tibbets: Improperly commandeered an airplane...
Captain Bob Lewis: I was on official business.
Colonel Paul Tibbets: Lost in the middle of a snowstorm...
Captain Bob Lewis: Do you expect me to control the weather?
Colonel Paul Tibbets: Didn't occur to you to use instruments...
Captain Bob Lewis: My compass was out, SIR.
Colonel Paul Tibbets: Set down in the middle of a corn field...
Captain Bob Lewis: It was on the approach to the airport.
Colonel Paul Tibbets: So why didn't you use the airport?
Captain Bob Lewis: Because I was out of gas! It was one gorgeous piece of flying.
[...]
See more »

Connections

Remake of Above and Beyond (1952) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Good movie, some inaccurate reviews.
27 June 2014 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Some of the reviews of this movie are more fabrication than fact. trimmerb's allegation that "the plane's intercom" caught co-pilot Robert Lewis saying, "My God, what have we done?" is a total falsehood. Lewis wrote "My God" in his journal when he saw the brilliant flash of light that filled the plane and felt the shock wave from the bomb 31 seconds later.

It was not until 1955 when Lewis, then an employee of a candy company, told a Japanese minister that he had written, "My God, what have we done?" in his journal. Lewis had only written "My God," but his attitude toward nuclear weapons had changed due to the daily fears of Americans during the Cold War that the Soviets were going to nuke a U.S. city. So he put an impromptu addendum on his written statement 10 years later.

Intercoms on a B-29 were used by pushing a button to talk and releasing it to listen. There was no recording of the crew's comments, and Lewis's "My God" was conveyed in written form only.

The movie was very interesting, although Lewis's asking "What is that funny name (Enola Gay) doing on my plane?" is shown in a more pleasant light than the actual incident, in which Lewis was very angry at Tibbets being named to take over the Hiroshima mission. Lewis had flown the first six missions of the previously unnamed B-29, but only Tibbets, the two flight weaponeers, radar countermeasure expert Jacob Beser and perhaps bombardier Thomas Ferebee knew what the bomb the Enola Gay was carrying was capable of. Lewis knew that the plane was carrying a powerful bomb but had no idea of the actual power that "Little Boy" had. No other regular crew member of the Enola Gay did either on that particular morning in August 1945.


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