7.1/10
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4 user 1 critic

Kato hayabusa sento-tai (1944)

Biographical movie about Colonel Kato, an officer serving with the Imperial Japanese Army Air Force in Southeast Asia, he was highly respected by his pilots for his fairness and excellent flying ability.

Director:

Kajirô Yamamoto

Writers:

Kajirô Yamamoto (screenplay), Kenta Yamazaki (screenplay)
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Cast

Cast overview:
Susumu Fujita Susumu Fujita
Minoru Takada Minoru Takada
Denjirô Ôkôchi
Takashi Shimura
Yatarô Kurokawa Yatarô Kurokawa
Katsuhiko Haida Katsuhiko Haida
Takuzô Kumagai Takuzô Kumagai
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Storyline

Biographical movie about Colonel Kato, an officer serving with the Imperial Japanese Army Air Force in Southeast Asia, he was highly respected by his pilots for his fairness and excellent flying ability.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

airplane | world war two | japan | See All (3) »

Genres:

Action | War

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Details

Country:

Japan

Language:

Japanese

Release Date:

9 March 1944 (Japan) See more »

Also Known As:

Colonel Kato's Falcon Squadron See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Toho Company See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

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User Reviews

 
"The War God Does Not Return"
5 January 2019 | by bobliptonSee all my reviews

This is a biopic of Lt. Colonel Tateo Kato of the Japanese Air Force, and his command, from his taking command of the 64th Sentai in 1941 to his reported death on 22 May of 1942. It was directed by Kajiro Yamamoto, now best remembered as Kurosawa's mentor; Kurosawa was an assistant director on 17 of his pictures. Ishiro Honda was the credited A.D. on this picture.

War pilot pictures were a frequent genre, both before the war and during it. This one partakes of many of the standard tropes of such: the victories, the high-spirited pilots, and the deaths of the pilots and the rituals of remembrance. Where this movie differs is in the lack of internal conflict. In American movies of the era, there would be the wise commander, and the insubordinate subordinate who wants to fight the war on his own terms and in his own way. In many ways, such films were frequently about the education of the younger man about th ways of war and his need to dedicate himself to the common good. There's none of that here. All of the flying officers are dedicated to the war, and there are frequent references to samurai. None of them resent Kato; they admire him and feel he is a caring, dedicated officer; one officer speaks of their need to "perfect" themselves in the manner of Kato.

One stylistic feature strikes me as old-fashioned. The battle sequences are titled, and the titles seem narrative, as if they were to be read by benshi.

Many of the cast and the crew would become better known in the West because they would appear in Kurosawa's pictures. Yamamoto had been writing and directing movies since 1924 and would continue to do so until 1967, seven years before his death.


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