6.5/10
1,234
31 user 6 critic

Captains of the Clouds (1942)

Inspired by Churchill's Dunkirk speech, brash, undisciplined bush pilot Brian MacLean and three friends enlist in the RCAF but are deemed too old to be fliers.

Director:

Michael Curtiz

Writers:

Arthur T. Horman (story), Roland Gillett (story) | 3 more credits »
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From $2.99 (SD) on Prime Video

ON DISC
Nominated for 2 Oscars. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
James Cagney ... Brian MacLean
Dennis Morgan ... Johnny Dutton
Brenda Marshall ... Emily Foster
Alan Hale ... Francis Patrick 'Tiny' Murphy
George Tobias ... Blimp Lebec
Reginald Gardiner ... Scrounger Harris
W.A. Bishop W.A. Bishop ... Air Marshal W. A. Bishop (as Air Marshal W.A. Bishop)
Reginald Denny ... Commanding Officer
Russell Arms ... Louis 'Alabama' Prentiss
Paul Cavanagh ... Group Captain
Clem Bevans ... Sam 'Store-Teeth' Morrison
J.M. Kerrigan ... Foster
J. Farrell MacDonald ... Dr. Neville (as J. Farrell Macdonald)
Patrick O'Moore Patrick O'Moore ... Fyffe
Morton Lowry ... Carmichael
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Storyline

Brian McLean is a ruthless bush-pilot in Canada. He offers some other pilots an opportunity of earning a lot of money, but he marries the girl-friend of one of them. After listening to Churchill's famous "Blood, Sweat and tears" radio address he and some other pilots decide to join the RCAF - and his superior is always the pilot who's girlfriend he has married. Due to this and the fact, that McLean doesn't like to obey he gets troubles. Written by Stephan Eichenberg <eichenbe@fak-cbg.tu-muenchen.de>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Action | Drama | War

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

21 February 1942 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Shadows of Their Wings See more »

Filming Locations:

Canada See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Warner Bros. See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (Turner library print)

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The graduation scene was an actual graduation ceremony of the R.C.A.F. with W.A. Bishop in attendance. He also attended the New York opening along with 200 R.C.A.F. cadets and other officials. See more »

Goofs

Considering that the bombers were gutted to lessen weight and add fuel tanks to maximize their range and endurance, flying from Canada would have had them arrive at England's west coast. In fact, they are shown flying over water. But they are attacked by a Messerschmitt Bf-109, which did not have the range to reach the west coast, let alone make several passes and then return to its base, even if it had drop tanks, and would not in any case risk time and fuel patrolling that area. See more »

Quotes

Emily Foster: Hey! What brought you back?
Brian MacLean: A whim.
Emily Foster: Well you can keep on going.
Brian MacLean: Oh you don't know me. I have a whim of iron!
See more »

Crazy Credits

Sincere appreciation is expressed to Major the Honorable C.G. Power P.C., M.C., Minister of National Defence for Air (Canada) and to Air Marshal L.S. Breadner D.S.C., Chief of the Air Staff, Royal Canadian Air Force, without whose authority and generous co-operation this picture would not have been brought to its splendid conclusion. We also wish to express our thanks to Air Marshal Bishop, V.C. and other officers and men of the R.C.A.F. who, in the making of the picture, are portrayed in the actual performance of their regular duties. See more »

Soundtracks

The Thin Red Line
(1925) (uncredited)
Music by Kenneth Alford
Played by the RCAF band at the Uplands wings ceremony
See more »

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User Reviews

A 'cut-and-shut' picture, but watch it again anyway.
26 February 2002 | by peterjamesyatesSee all my reviews

A number of sharp observations have already been made of this movie. Certainly, there do appear to have been two pictures which have been sliced in two and bonded together. I can't help wondering where the other film is - ie. the film which started out as a wartime RCAF flagwaver and ends as a mountains-and- lakes set movie with the love interest triangle, plus old Alan Hale.

As with so many old films, historical interest alone makes the picture worth seeing again and again; for its day, marks: 6.5 or 7 out of 10.

Certainly, there are one or two pretty corny scenes and fancy Michael Curtiz letting Cagney and D. Morgan get away with surely the least convincing fight ever filmed. He must have taken an early lunch that day.


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