6.8/10
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32 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 »
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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
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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:

A NEW TRIUMPH FOR WHAT-A-GUY WAYNE! (original print ad - all caps) See more »

Genres:

Biography | Drama | War

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

22 February 1957 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Alas de águila See more »

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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

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 »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

According to director John Ford, "Everything in the picture was true. The fight in the club--throwing the cake--actually happened. I can verify that as an eyewitness. I ducked it. And the plane landing in the swimming pool right in the middle of the Admiral's tea--that really happened." See more »

Goofs

Shortly after Spig rejoins the navy, he is shown reporting on the sinking of the USS Hornet. Later, just before Spig gives a brief overview of the "jeep carrier" idea, the admiral is briefed on the Japanese carriers Akagi, Kaga and Soryu. Clearly he is being informed on the Battle of Midway, where those carriers were sunk. The Hornet had yet been sunk at that tine. It did in fact take part in the Battle of Midway and came through unscathed. See more »

Quotes

'Jughead' Carson: [the General has just given him some whiskey for Spig] Well, thank you sir!
'Jughead' Carson: [he chugs it and throws the bottle behind the mirror] They can make better booze in a bathtub!
See more »


Soundtracks

The Wearing of the Green
(uncredited)
Traditional
Heard when the police arrive to break up the fights
See more »

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User Reviews

 
A nice biographical film about Naval Commander Frank "Spig" Wead, credited with starting the air wing of the US Navy
2 July 2002 | by Mickey-2See all my reviews

"The Wings of Eagles" starred John Wayne and Maureen O'Hara and was directed by John Ford. While not a blockbuster by any stretch of the imagination, the film nevertheless has some great touches that would make a viewer wish to see the film again. Wayne played Lt. Commander Frank "Spig" Wead, the man credited with getting the Navy an air wing to support its military ships, and Maureen O'Hara plays the wife that has to contend with Spig's love of country first and family second. Dan Dailey has a good role as Wead's best friend in the military, while other members of the John Ford company of players contribute their talents to the film. Ken Curtis shows up a good bit, and Ward Bond has a role as a film director that smacked of a caricature of John Ford. Bond plays this to the hilt, and seemed to enjoy the chance to show Ford how he came off, at times.

The scenes that were very watchable could include several fight scenes between members of the Army Air Corps and their Naval counterparts, plus a very heart rending view of Wayne's efforts to rehabilitate himself, following a fall down a flight of stairs at his house. Good, but not great, an 8/10.


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