6.7/10
3,516
38 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" Wead.

Director:

John Ford

Writers:

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

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 7.2/10 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
Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 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
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
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
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Three vignettes of old Irish country life, based on a series of short stories. In "The Majesty of the Law," a police officer must arrest a very old-fashioned, traditional fellow for assault... See full summary »

Director: John Ford
Stars: Tyrone Power, Noel Purcell, Cyril Cusack
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
Biography | Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

In 1898, Irish immigrant Martin Maher is hired as a civilian employee at West Point where, during a 50-year career, he rises to the rank of NCO and instructor.

Director: John Ford
Stars: Tyrone Power, Maureen O'Hara, Robert Francis
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
3 Godfathers (1948)
Certificate: Passed Drama | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Three outlaws on the run find a dying woman in the desert who gives birth to a baby. The mother entrusts the care of the child to the three men.

Director: John Ford
Stars: John Wayne, Pedro Armendáriz, Harry Carey Jr.
The Quiet Man (1952)
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

A retired American boxer returns to the village of his birth in Ireland, where he finds love.

Director: John Ford
Stars: John Wayne, Maureen O'Hara, Barry Fitzgerald
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Frank Skeffington is an old Irish-American political boss, running for re-election as mayor of a U.S. town for the last time.

Director: John Ford
Stars: Spencer Tracy, Jeffrey Hunter, Dianne Foster
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)
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 »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

There is a scene in the movie where we see the director, played by Ward Bond, looking at a clip of a film written by the main character. The clip is from the film Hell Divers (1931), which was actually written by Frank Wead. In the same scene, Bond asks one of the producers, "How'd you like that kid with Beery (Wallace Beery)?" The producer says, "Great. Sign him up." The actor they are talking about is Clark Gable. See more »

Goofs

During Spig's first solo flight, the aircraft markings are wrong for Pensacola in 1920. The white-blue-red roundels were correct for WWI years but only in the European combat theater. The stateside markings did not change during the war. In Pensacola in 1920, the markings should have been white stars on blue discs with a circular red spot in the center of the star. See more »

Quotes

Min Wead: Why don't you!
Frank W. 'Spig' Wead: Alright, I been thinking what a heel I been about you and my own kids, I do something I go all the way - living, gambling, flying, tap myself out I guess. That's what I wanted to be. Maybe the way I am.
Min Wead: Star-Spangled Spig - damn the marguritte and full speed ahead and don't give up the ship.
Frank W. 'Spig' Wead: Have a drink. Listen, Min, I'm trying to say I been a fool, first grade gold brand
Min Wead: So have I!
Frank W. 'Spig' Wead: [Grabs her] Okay, let's change it. Lets grow up before our kids do
Min Wead: We better hurry up.
[...]
See more »

Connections

References Citizen Kane (1941) See more »

Soundtracks

Song of the Islands
(uncredited)
By Charles E. King
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
Hollywood biography based on a Air hero named Frank Wead with sterling performance by John Wayne
5 July 2011 | by ma-cortesSee all my reviews

Wonderfully shot Ford film with a lively look at the spirit of Navy , including glorification of military life , familiar drama , love and sentimental nostalgia with interesting character studio of a varied assortment of individuals . It's a first-rate war melodrama , including comedy , and masterfully directed by the great John Ford . It's based on the life of one of America's greatest air heroes , Frank ¨Spig¨Wead , an Air hero who wrote plays about the war . He starred some rousing exploits in the ¨Schneider Cup Air Races¨. But he suffers a home accident and is interned in ¨San Diego National Hospital¨, and despite being crippled and wheel-bound he subsequently made a substantial contribution to America's war effort in the Pacific during WWII. He was a famous aviation pioneer become Hollywood screenwriter and one of them was ¨They were expendable (1945) ¨ directed by the same Ford and also with Wayne in the main role . This is a great and stolid drama, a John Ford's lusty realization and marvelously constructed.

This classic picture ranks as one of the best of John Ford's work. It contains Ford's usual themes as familiar feeling , a little bit enjoyable humor, friendship and and sense of comradeship among people . Multiple highlights as the fights between Air and Army soldiers and of course the sensible final farewell on the carrier . Interesting screenplay portraying in depth characters and brooding events with interesting issues running beneath script surface is written by Frank Fenton, John Ford's habitual, and based on the life and writings of Commander Frank W. 'Spig' Wead .

This excellent film featuring a magnificent performance by whole casting . Awesome John Wayne in a larger-than-life character . Enticing and intimate Maureen O'Hara in a sensible role with sensational acting . Excellent co-starring cast as War Bond as John Ford-alter ego, including pipe-smoking and hat . In the film appears , as usual , Ford's favourite actors as Ken Curtis , Mae Marsh , Kenneth Tobey, Willis Bouchey, Jack Pennick , some of them are uncredited . Good cinematography by Paul Voguel and jingoist musical score by Jeff Alexander. Rating : Better than average . Worthwhile watching .


9 of 11 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 38 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Free Movies and TV Shows You Can Watch Now

On IMDb TV, you can catch Hollywood hits and popular TV series at no cost. Select any poster below to play the movie, totally free!

Browse free movies and TV series



Recently Viewed