6.8/10
3,256
31 user 11 critic

The Wings of Eagles (1957)

Approved | | Biography, Drama, War | 22 February 1957 (USA)
A biography of Navy flier-turned-screenwriter Frank W. "Spig" Read.

Director:

John Ford

Writers:

Frank Fenton (screenplay), William Wister Haines (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
Reviews

Watch Now

From $2.99 (SD) on Prime Video

ON DISC

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Action | Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Major Kirby leads The Wildcats squadron into the historic WWII battle of Guadalcanal.

Director: Nicholas Ray
Stars: John Wayne, Robert Ryan, Don Taylor
Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

During WWII, a submarine's second in command inherits the problem of torpedoes that don't explode. When on shore, he is eager to win back his ex-wife.

Director: George Waggner
Stars: John Wayne, Patricia Neal, Ward Bond
Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

The PT boat unit Motor Torpedo Boat Squadron Three defends the Philippines from Japanese invasion during World War II.

Directors: John Ford, Robert Montgomery
Stars: Robert Montgomery, John Wayne, Donna Reed
Adventure | Romance | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

In 1863, a Union outfit is sent behind Confederate lines in Mississippi to destroy enemy railroads but a captive southern belle and the unit's doctor cause frictions within ranks.

Director: John Ford
Stars: John Wayne, William Holden, Constance Towers
3 Godfathers (1948)
Certificate: Passed Drama | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

When 3 outlaws on the run find a dying woman and her newborn baby in the desert they vow to save the child.

Director: John Ford
Stars: John Wayne, Pedro Armendáriz, Harry Carey Jr.
Adventure | Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Comedy subtly dealing with moral issues such as racial bigotry, corporate greed, American belief of societal superiority and hypocrisy.

Director: John Ford
Stars: John Wayne, Lee Marvin, Elizabeth Allen
The Sea Chase (1955)
Action | Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

As World War II begins, German freighter Captain Karl Ehrlich tries to get his ship back to Germany through a gauntlet of Allied warships.

Director: John Farrow
Stars: John Wayne, Lana Turner, David Farrar
Blood Alley (1955)
Action | Adventure
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

His ship seized by the Chinese Communists, American Merchant Captain Tom Wilder languishes in prison but Chinese villagers help him escape to sail them to Hong-Kong.

Directors: William A. Wellman, John Wayne
Stars: John Wayne, Lauren Bacall, Paul Fix
Rio Grande (1950)
Certificate: Passed Romance | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A cavalry officer posted on the Rio Grande must deal with murderous raiding Apaches, his son who's a risk-taking recruit and his wife from whom he has been separated for many years.

Director: John Ford
Stars: John Wayne, Maureen O'Hara, Ben Johnson
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Struggling to retain custody of his daughter following his divorce, football coach Steve Williams finds himself embroiled in a recruiting scandal at the tiny Catholic college he is trying ... See full summary »

Director: Michael Curtiz
Stars: John Wayne, Donna Reed, Charles Coburn
Tycoon (1947)
Adventure | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

In South America, an American engineer is asked by his boss to build a mountain railroad tunnel following a shorter but more dangerous route.

Director: Richard Wallace
Stars: John Wayne, Laraine Day, Cedric Hardwicke
Action | Adventure | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

When a commercial airliner develops engine problems on a trans-Pacific flight and the pilot loses his nerve, it is up to the washed-up co-pilot Dan Roman to bring the plane in safely.

Director: William A. Wellman
Stars: John Wayne, Claire Trevor, Laraine Day
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
John Wayne ... Frank W. 'Spig' Wead
Dan Dailey ... 'Jughead' Carson
Maureen O'Hara ... Min Wead
Ward Bond ... John Dodge
Ken Curtis ... John Dale Price
Edmund Lowe ... Adm. Moffett
Kenneth Tobey ... Capt. Herbert Allen Hazard
James Todd James Todd ... Jack Travis
Barry Kelley ... Capt. Jock Clark
Sig Ruman ... Manager
Henry O'Neill ... Capt. Spear
Willis Bouchey ... Barton
Dorothy Jordan ... Rose Brentmann
Edit

Storyline

U.S. Navy pilot Frank 'Spig' Wead is a fun-loving and rowdy adventurer, but also a fierce proponent of Naval aviation. His dedication to the promotion of the Navy's flying program is so intense that his marriage and family life suffer. When an accident paralyzes him, Spig finds a new means of expressing his love of flying: screenwriting. Successful and acclaimed, he finds the U.S. entry into World War II to be an irresistible call. Pleading that he be reinstated in the Navy despite his paralysis, Spig finds he has an enormous contribution yet to make. Written by Jim Beaver <jumblejim@prodigy.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

WAYNE AS YOU WANT HIM...Reckless, Devil-May-Care -- as "Spig" Wead, Navy Flyer! See more »

Genres:

Biography | Drama | War

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

22 February 1957 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Alas de águila See more »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$2,644,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$2,300,000, 31 December 1957

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$3,650,000, 31 December 1957
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM) See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)| Perspecta Stereo

Color:

Color (Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Frank and Min's infant son is buried at St. Michaels Cemetery in Pensacola, Florida. According to the state's death records, he died on Feb. 28, 1920, just a little over two weeks after his first birthday. See more »

Goofs

Spig Wead was not transferred off the carrier at sea as shown at the end of the film. He actually remained aboard USS Essex until it docked at NAS Alameda in San Francisco Bay. He was given his official send off on the pier alongside Essex. See more »

Quotes

Min Wead: I'm not going
Frank W. 'Spig' Wead: Stay broke and keep moving, that's the story of our lives.
Min Wead: Spig, you've got two daughters and they've lived in seven different houses and seven seven states and seven different years back and forth across the country and out of it, too. Well, I'm just not going to move them anymore.
Frank W. 'Spig' Wead: Well, have a drink
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Kill Bill: Vol. 1 (2003) See more »

Soundtracks

Anchors Aweigh
(uncredited)
Music by Charles A. Zimmerman, lyrics by Alfred Hart Miles and George D. Lottman
Used as a theme throughout the film
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Touches Me
28 July 2002 | by dmombitSee all my reviews

I have two fav John Wayne movies and this is one of them. The other is "McLintock!"

Today is the first time I've seen "Wings of Eagles, The" for years and years. Probably because it's always been such an emotional movie for me. I always cry at the ending...most likely because the very thing Spig Wead wanted seemed to elude him. Perhaps because his desire was never really clearly defined, even to him.

As I sat watching it, I got the bright idea of looking it up in the "IMDB" movie database. I was curious about the writing that Wead did and also the timeline. I came across a couple of reviews and decided to add my two sense (sic) worth.

I realized today that the things I like about the movie were partially the things that one of the other reviewers didn't. I LIKE the way Wead's story is presented. It isn't neat and orderly. No cheating endings or story movement. It seems like he was very self-involved and dealt better with other men than with his wife. I suspect that both Spig and Min were trapped by their societal roles in a way that many others were at that time. They did't have that same open way of spilling their guts that we've all embraced in today's world.

Men were men and women...weren't! LOL!

Anyway, I was always crazy about John Wayne and had such a crush on him whenever he'd appear in Navy whites. Something about that craggy face and those blue eyes grabbed me every time. Plus, I share his birthday so that made him extra kewl in my eyes.

Ford was wise NOT to turn this into a typical John "Hero" Wayne vehicle. That was probably why they worked so well together in all of those films. He was no more snowed by Wayne's larger than life personna than Wayne was of Ford's. I would love to have been a fly on the wall when those two were goin' at it.

Although Wayne was fiftyish when he did this film, I think he displayed a good youthful Wead as well as the somewhat more mature one. A better, more subtle acting job than the other reviewer gave him credit for doing.

Time for Spig to bite it so I'm off now...

dmombit


18 of 23 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 31 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page



Recently Viewed