In this story of the early days of daylight bombing raids over Nazi Germany, General Frank Savage must take command of a "hard luck" bomber group. Much of the story deals with his struggle to whip his group into a disciplined fighting unit in spite of heavy losses, and withering attacks by German fighters over their targets. Actual combat footage is used in this tense war drama.Written by
KC Hunt <firstname.lastname@example.org>
After the film was made, Gregory Peck became great friends with the character he had played, Gen. Frank Armstrong, who clearly approved of Peck's portrayal of him. See more »
Insignia incorrect for the period. The Schweinfurt ball bearing plant raids took place in 1943. By that time, the national insignia had the bars on each side of the round star background. Apparently the older star-on-blue with no bars was used to match documentary footage inserted into the movie. See more »
[addressing the 918th for the first time at 0800]
There will be a briefing for a practice mission at 1100 this morning. That's right, practice. I've been sent here to take over what has come to be known as a hard luck group. Well, I don't believe in hard luck. So we're going to find out what the trouble is. Maybe part of it's your flying, so we're going back to fundamentals. But I can tell you now one reason I think you've been having hard luck. I saw it in your faces last night. I can see it ...
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In writing reviews for IMDb, I have begun to notice just how many exceptional movies Gregory Peck did. Yes, I know he made a few stinkers (such as Days of Glory and Boys From Brazil), but look at all the great movies he did--3 of the best Westerns ever made (The Big Country, The Gunfighter and Yellow Sky), some dandy dramas (To Kill a Mockingbird, Cape Fear) and two of the best war pictures of all time (The Guns of Navarone and this movie, Twelve O'Clock High).
Twelve O'Clock High is exceptional in every way. It is very similar to the excellent movie Command Decision, but goes deeper into the emotional and psychological cost of commanding the bombing campaign against Nazi Germany. Whereas Gable is all alone and hated in Command Decision, Peck goes a step further and actually goes on bombing runs with his men--only to become deeply scarred emotionally in the process. As a result, this movie is a fantastic look at the psychological effects of war--something that only rarely gets addressed in war movies.
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