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Memphis Belle (1990)

 -  Action | Drama | War  -  12 October 1990 (USA)
6.9
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Ratings: 6.9/10 from 20,620 users  
Reviews: 81 user | 24 critic

It's May 1943 at a US Army Air Corps base in England. The four officers and six enlisted men of the Memphis Belle - a B-17 bomber so nicknamed for the girlfriend of its stern and stoic ... See full summary »

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Title: Memphis Belle (1990)

Memphis Belle (1990) on IMDb 6.9/10

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Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Documentary about the 25th and last bombing mission of a B17, the "Memphis Belle". The "Memphis Belle" took part in a great bombing raid on sub-pens in Wilhelmshafen, Germany. On their way ... See full summary »

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For almost 60 years the B-17 bomber, the Memphis Belle, called Memphis, Tennessee home. In Oct. 2005, The U.S. Air Force removed one of the most famous aircraft in the world from the ... See full summary »

Director: Ken Axmaker Jr.
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
1st Lt. Luke Sinclair
...
...
Lt. Val "Valentine" Kozlowski
...
...
...
Sgt. Virgil Hoogesteger (as Reed Edward Diamond)
...
Sgt. Eugene McVey
...
Sgt. Jack Bocci
David Strathairn ...
Col. Craig Harriman
...
...
Faith
Mac McDonald ...
Les (as Mac Macdonald)
Jodie Wilson ...
Singer
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Storyline

It's May 1943 at a US Army Air Corps base in England. The four officers and six enlisted men of the Memphis Belle - a B-17 bomber so nicknamed for the girlfriend of its stern and stoic captain, Dennis Dearborn - will soon start their twenty-fifth mission, having completed their previous twenty-four successfully with nary an incident, while fewer and fewer other planes are coming back from their missions at all. If they complete their next mission successfully, they will be the first US Air Force squad to complete their tour of duty. Visiting communications officer Lt. Col. Bruce Derringer wants to publicize and highly tout their accomplishment, even before it happens, as a long term good news campaign at a time when there is little good news to report. Derringer's plan is against the wishes of the base commander, Col. Craig Harriman, who would prefer to treat the ten as any of his other hard working men. The previous success of the Memphis Belle is despite the disparate natures of the... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

mission | crew | bomber | bombing | b 17 bomber | See more »

Taglines:

Brave young men who rode on the wings of victory.

Genres:

Action | Drama | War

Certificate:

PG-13 | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

| |

Language:

Release Date:

12 October 1990 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Bela Memphis  »

Box Office

Budget:

$23,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$27,441,977 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(70 mm prints)| (35 mm prints)

Color:

(archive footage)|

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The Sally B, one of two B17s portraying the Belle in the film, is the last airworthy B17 in the UK. She is based at RAF Duxford, Europe's premier aviation museum, and is part of the USAAF WWII Memorial Flight making dozens of appearances across the UK and North Europe. She is maintained and run by volunteers and relies solely upon donations. See more »

Goofs

Features P-51 Mustangs in May 1943, several months before they were introduced into the European theatre. See more »

Quotes

Richard Rascal Moore: Hey is that your new plane out there?
Stan the Rookie: Yeah, Mother and Country.
Richard Rascal Moore: Mother and Country?
[everyone together]
Richard Rascal Moore: Awwww!
Stan the Rookie: We had our first practice today.
Richard Rascal Moore: Oh yeah? How'd it go?
Stan the Rookie: Well, we need a couple more. If you guys have any advice...?
Sgt. Jack Bocci: Yeah, get a gun, shoot yourself in the foot, and go home!
Eugene McVey: Now, that's good advice!
[...]
See more »

Connections

Featured in The 100 Greatest War Films (2005) See more »

Soundtracks

Greeneyes
Written by Nilo Menendez, E. Rivera and Eddie Woods
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

"MB" nay-sayers: ever been a bomber pilot at age 21?
13 November 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

No?? … then shut up.

My dad was. Didn't fly B-17s, but he was the PIC (pilot-in-command) of a crew of seven, all younger than he, of a B-26 Martin Marauder medium bomber (the Flying Prostitute – 'no visible means of support'; referred to the short wingspan and hot landing speeds) in the Mediterranean Campaign out of Corsica and Sardinia, bombing German-controlled ball-bearing factories in northern Italy at 10,000 ft. Lost his nose-gunner from "fright" - frozen to the gun – wouldn't bail out when they were shot down right after 'delivering the pizza' over Bergamo-Seriate airfield on my mom's birthday, Aug 08th, 1944…about 9 weeks before I was born. His story about getting out of that B-26 before it crashed would raise the hair on your young necks. Survived Stalag Luft III and the 500 mile foot-march – yes, in January, through snow – to Stalag Luft VII (Steve McQueen – "The Great Escape"). Gen'l Patton liberated all in April, 1945 – including my dad and five of his crew.

Dad didn't make furniture like Matthew Modine's character in "Memphis Belle". But he did pick and truck-haul tomatoes on HIS dad's farm in the Ohio River Valley around Racine, right out of the black river-bottom soil just above the banks; became a basketball hero in high school; then entered the Army Air Force at 19. Pilot training in Texas and Florida. I have the letters from him to my mom during all that...

And the dialog in the film? Pretty true-to-life, he said – everybody was young and talked and acted JUST LIKE THAT…

This review isn't meant to be about my dad. But I hope it says a little something about the producer's efforts for "Memphis Belle." Very young kids – normal Americans – tough (even impossible) duty – in advanced machines (then) – in hard times – in a country far from home – doing what they were trained for. Sound familiar even today?...

And don't be too hard on the details. Remember, this is a 'representative film' of what happened to many, many bomber crews in many, many different bombers during WWII. Many thousands of very young American air crews were lost in this effort to help keep America and our Allies 'free.' Think about that whole image, listen to the music score, cherish the action from a fresh perspective. TRY to put yourself in their shoes.

Then watch the film again…


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