Amazing Stories: Season 1, Episode 5

The Mission (3 Nov. 1985)

TV Episode  -   -  Adventure | Fantasy | Horror
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Ratings: 7.8/10 from 548 users  
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A courageous young World War II gunner and aspiring cartoonist, trapped in the belly of a B-17 aircraft, has only his imagination as a force that might be able to save him.



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Title: The Mission (03 Nov 1985)

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Episode complete credited cast:
Jake (as Jeffrey Jay Cohen)
Gary Mauro ...
Glen Mauro ...
Terry Beaver ...
David Grant Hayward ...
Mechanic #1
Mechanic #2 (as Anthony La Paglia)
Tail Gunner
Ken Stovitz ...
Nelson Welch ...
Father McKay


A courageous young World War II gunner and aspiring cartoonist, trapped in the belly of a B-17 aircraft, has only his imagination as a force that might be able to save him. Written by Anonymous

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Release Date:

3 November 1985 (USA)  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


This episode runs for 60 minutes, as opposed to the usual 30 minutes for the episodes in this series. (See also episode #2.8 "Go to the Head of the Class") See more »


The Army Air Corps Song
Written by Robert Crawford
Whistled by various cast members
See more »

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User Reviews

Stunningly directed piece of tease
26 July 2009 | by (Canada) – See all my reviews

I did not know if I should vote one star or nine out of ten. A stunning directorial tour-de-force on Spielberg's part. Spielberg made this seemingly on a dare, the way Hitchcock made Lifeboat. The whole episode is set inside a WWII bomber mission except for a few cut aways to the home field where a pregnant wife awaits anxiously for her husband's safe return.

Spielberg pulls out every piece of schmaltzy manipulation to bring the audience where he wants them and then drops a bomb of a twist ending in the final two minutes. In the two decades following the original broadcast, my friends and I were to use a two word catch phrase to describe a particularly debased kind of self-indulgent film making. I will not repeat it here in order to avoid spoilers but when you see the episode you will know what words we used.

At every commercial break my buddies and I were twisting our imaginations into knots trying to figure out how the cliff hanger was going to end. We were on the edge of our seats until the final scenes. It was the worst betrayal I ever experienced with a film maker (until Lucas' second Star Wars trilogy, that is.) This should be studied in film schools as one of Spielberg's seminal works, not because it is great, mind you, but simply because of its position in his filmography and because of the text-book way he uses his cinematic devices to heighten the tension.

A must see curiosity piece and one of the few episodes of this dreadful series that is beyond memorable.

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