A Navy navigator is shot down over enemy territory and is ruthlessly pursued by a secret police enforcer and the opposing troops. Meanwhile his commanding officer goes against orders in an attempt to rescue him.
During World War II when the Americans needed to find a secure method of communicating they devised a code using the Navajo language. So Navajos were recruited to become what they call code talkers. They would be assigned to a unit and would communicate with other units using the code so that even though the enemy could listen they couldn't understand what they were saying. And to insure that the code is protected men are assigned to protect it at all costs. One of these men is Joe Enders, a man who sustained an injury that can make him unfit for duty but he manages to avoid it and is told of his duty and that the man he is suppose to protect is Ben Yahzee. Initially there is tension but the two men learn to get along. Written by
Naval Air Weapons Station, Point Mugu, was used to film the Camp Tarawa portion of the film, the Marines pre-battle embarkation point. See more »
The start of the Camp Pendleton sequence opens with a closeup of a 50-star U.S. flag which is incorrect for 1943, the year of the action. The closeup dissolves to an establishing shot of the camp's parade square where a correct, 48-star flag is visible on the mast. The U.S. would not require a 50-star flag until 1959. See more »
[Showing a series of photographs]
Take a look. It's a Navajo... or was. Tortured to death by Japanese intelligence trying to bust our code. Fortunately, couldn't help them even if he wanted to.
Man's a Navajo, not a Code Talker. Code's based on their language, but it is still a code. Tojo'd like nothing more than to catch a live one.
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The boys over at Mystery Science Theater 3000 should have a crack at this mess.
What's that you say? "Windtalkers is a war movie, not science fiction!"
Let's see...Cage's character fires his pistol in no particular direction yet takes out large numbers of enemy soldiers who also seem compelled to present themselves as clear targets at the most inopportune moments during the countless firefights.
The bodies of enemy soldiers are hurled through the air in unbelievable symmetry as a result of conventional World War II ordnance detonations that contradict the laws of physics.
While under ferocious enemy attack, a Navajo code talker invokes the code (his native Navajo tongue) to request air strikes from the American battleships offshore. A less dramatic, more expedient request for assistance would have gone something like this: "Holy crap, we're getting pounded here on the island by the enemy! Anything you fellas can do to kill the Japanese soldiers who are killing us would really be helpful! Just look for the smoke, fire and bodies flying through the air!" No code needed, just plain old conversational (albeit very animated) english. No problem if the enemy hears the radio transmission because everything is ... what's the phrase?... happening right now!!!
I saw this movie a year ago during a pre-release studio screening in Laguna Hills, CA. John Woo and about 35 movie industry types (each armed with his or her own water bottle) were in the audience. When the movie ended and the audience members began filling out the obligatory evaluation forms (the price of admission) the stillness in the theater was deafening.
I assumed that the film would be severely re-edited. Apparently it wasn't.
"Windtalkers" was as much about the American Indian's (90% Navajo) unique contribution to our prevailing in World War II as Tom Sizemore's character -- collecting souvenir soil samples -- in "Saving Private Ryan" contributed to the study of geology.
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