6.9/10
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The Court-Martial of Billy Mitchell (1955)

Approved | | Biography, Drama, War | 31 December 1955 (USA)
A dramatization of the American general and his court martial for publically complaining about High Command's dismissal and neglect of the aerial fighting forces.

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Writers:

(story and screenplay), (story and screenplay)
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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Col. Billy Mitchell
... Gen. Jimmy Guthrie
... Congressman Frank R. Reid
... Maj. Allan Guillion
... Margaret Lansdowne
... Col. Moreland
... Lt. Col. Herbert White
... Lt. Cmdr. Zachary 'Zack' Lansdowne
... Capt. Bob Elliott
... Capt. Russ Peters
... Adm. Gage (as Robert Simon)
... Sen. Fullerton
Dayton Lummis ... Gen. Douglas MacArthur
Tom McKee ... Capt. Eddie Rickenbacker
Stephen Roberts ... Maj. Carl Spaatz (as Steve Roberts)
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Storyline

The true story of General Billy Mitchell, a pioneering crusader for the Army's fledgling air corp. In spite of an impressive performance during the First World War, the commanders of America's armed forces still think of the airplane as little more then a carnival attraction. Even after sinking an "unsinkable" captured German battleship from the air, Mitchell sees funds dry up and friends die due to poor equipment. He is court-martialed after questioning the loyalty of his superiors for allowing the air corp to deteriorate. Written by KC Hunt <khunt@eng.morgan.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

He defied the army and navy . . . and they gave him a Court Martial!

Genres:

Biography | Drama | War

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

31 December 1955 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Condamné au silence  »

Filming Locations:

 »

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Box Office

Gross USA:

$3,000,000, 31 December 1955
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(optical prints)| (RCA Sound Recording) (magnetic prints)

Color:

(WarnerColor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.55 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The appearance of Major H. H. ("Hap") Arnold, played by Robert Brubaker in the film, is significant, for it was he who would authorize the famed Doolittle air attack on Tokyo in April 1942. The raid consisted of B-25 Mitchell bombers - named in honor of Billy Mitchell. See more »

Goofs

In the opening sequence Colonel Mitchell arrives for the test he is flying a Grumman JF "Duck". This airplane was not first flown until 1932 when the date of the scene is 1921. See more »

Quotes

Admiral William S. Sims: Just because you read a lot of books about golf, doesn't make you a good golfer.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in M*A*S*H: 5 O'Clock Charlie (1973) See more »

Soundtracks

The U.S. Air Force
(uncredited)
Music by Robert Crawford
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User Reviews

Good Intro for the Air Force
15 December 2004 | by See all my reviews

In the USAF we were taught about Billy Mitchell as being the "Father of the Air Force", and how he sacrificed his career to bring attention to his points.

What a good movie. Rod Steiger did steal the scenes, and I suspect that James Cagney would have made a better movie... but I found myself becoming drawn in by Gary Cooper's portrayal of Billy Mitchell. He might have been a bit long in the tooth, but remember, the real Billy Mitchell was 46 years old at the time of his Court Martial, at about the age when he should start thinking about retirement anyhow.

It plays like a stage play; the story is enough to make a powerful punch.

2 Thumbs Up. See it. Get it on DVD if you can, so you can read the subtitles and not miss a thing.


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