The Tuskegee Airmen (TV Movie 1995) Poster

(1995 TV Movie)

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9/10
A story that should have been told long before...
Gavno14 March 2005
THE TUSKEEGEE AIRMEN is a film that I tend to get very emotional about. I can never see the ending without tears of appreciation, joy and intense pride.

It all comes home for me as a self admittedly rednecked White bomber pilot says in the final briefing: "I have a crew whose lives are my responsibility. If it's all the same to you Sir, I want the 332nd to take me to Berlin and back".

That cinematic statement is a long overdue Thank You from America to the pilots of the 332nd Fighter Group, both the living and the dead, for a job well done.

I personally owe the Tuskeegee Airmen a sincere vote of thanks, as does EVERY Black person who has ever had the honor of having flown a military aircraft for the United States. The Tuskeegee Airmen blazed the trail that made it possible for others to follow.

I've met a couple of the original Tuskeegee pilots, and I've heard their stories. The discrimination and bigotry shown in the film was NOTHING compared to the realities that they faced day after day. Even after the war, as decorated fighter pilots, the bigotry they faced on their return to the US was unbelievable.

One old fighter pilot told me of how he had just come ashore from the troopship in full uniform, and was almost immediately arrested by the military police in New York City on a charge of impersonating an officer and wearing unauthorized decorations; the MP just KNEW that there was no such thing as a Black fighter pilot.

Another told me of his postwar attempts to gain employment as an airline pilot as the lines geared up for the bright future that they saw coming. Ex military pilots with half his experience who were White were being snapped up without question... but after much beating around the bush, he was finally told that even as impressive as his credentials were, there was no place for him in the industry. He recalled that the airline representative that told him was so ashamed that he couldn't look him in the eye as he said it.

Lawrence Fishburn's portrayal of Lt. Hannibal Lee is probably typical of the men who were part of this, the SECOND "Tuskeegee Experiment". They were college graduates, the best of the best, who had survived a system deliberately designed to eliminate them from flight training.

Andre Braugher's testimony (as Col. Ben O. Davis Jr.) before the Congressional committee says it all when he asks what he, as a Black soldier, should think of a nation that despises him even as he lays down his life to defend it... a nation that asks him to fight for principles that don't apply to HIM personally.

The film has technical flaws... every film does... but beyond them it tells a story that, by design or negligence, has been ignored by American history for almost a half century.
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8/10
I enjoyed this movie for its historical detail.
ruby2andor2 October 2004
I enjoyed this film a lot, both for the drama and the action. I watched it on the History Channel where scenes from the film were intercut with commentary from surviving Tuskegee airmen. It made the film that much more fascinating.

As one of the other reviewers mentioned, there is one scene where a pilot sinks a German destroyer using only this guns. This is a true event. From the "Tuskegee Airmen" site: "The 332nd Fighter Group also distinguished themselves in June 1944 when two of its pilots flying P-47 Thunderbolt aircraft discovered a German destroyer in the harbor at Trieste, Italy. One of the pilots, Lieutenant Gynne Pierson of the 302nd Fighter Squadron, using only the aircraft's 50-caliber machine guns, strafed the destroyer, causing it to explode and sink."

The statement that the 332nd did not lose a single bomber to enemy action is also true. To qualify that, some of the bombers were lost in other ways, but never to enemy planes. In fact, under Benjamin O. Davis' command, the group flew more than 15,000 sorties against the Luftwaffe, shot down 111 enemy aircraft, and destroyed another 150 on the ground, while losing only 66 of their own aircraft to all causes.

I am not sure they shot down the FIRST German jet, but they did receive a citation after shooting down some German jets. Again, from the TA website: "The 332nd Fighter Group received the Presidential Unit Citation for its longest bomber escort mission to Berlin, Germany, March 24, 1945. They destroyed three German ME-262 jet fighters and damaged five additional jet fighters without losing any of the bombers or any of its own fighter aircraft to enemy aircraft."

Although there were no "aces" that came from the 332nd, this was probably because pilots were told not to pursue German planes for the kill once the planes were far enough away that they no longer posed a danger to the bombers.

The Tuskegee airmen who commented on this film said that the racism they encountered in real life was much worse than was depicted in the film, but much of the rest of the film was realistic.

I found it especially interesting that Benjamin O. Davis, Jr. (played by Andre Braugher) was depicted in this movie. He was a real person who was one of only two black line officers in the U.S. Army at the time--the other was his father. He was one of the first recruits trained at Tuskegee and received his wings in March 1942, after becoming the first black officer to solo an Army Air Corps aircraft. After flying in the Mediterranean, he returned to the US, and took command of the 332d Fighter Group. Eventually, he was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross. Following the War, he commanded the 477th Composite Group and the 332d Fighter Wing. In 1953 he again saw combat when he assumed command of the 51st Fighter-Interceptor Wing and flew the F-86 in Korea. With his promotion to brigadier general, Davis became the first black man to earn a star in the US Air Force. He retired as a lieutenant general in 1970, and died in 2002, ironically on July 4, at age 89.
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10/10
If this movie doesn't make you angry and then cheer something is wrong with you
andrew-richards3 August 2005
I was 17 years old when I first saw this movie on HBO. I was enthralled by WWII history already at this point. This movie opened my eyes to a whole other area of history that was missing in the history books of the small 99.5% white town I grew up in. The challenges these hero's faced just to serve their country they so loved while a good percentage of the country loathed them is deserving of a decoration in and of itself. This is mostly what the movie focuses on. However, the record of the men of 332d is second to none; no other unit in WWII could boast that while escorting, they never lost a bomber. John Lithgow also plays a good bit-part in the movie. He is a much better actor than I because I could never play a part where I had to utter such bigoted garbage as he did in this movie. Laurence Fishburne and Andre Braugher deliver stellar performances as Hannibal Lee and the great military leader Benjamin O. Davis. This film is a definite must see for any WWII history fan and a great movie for everyone else. Too bad it was never released in the box office I think it would have faired well.
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9/10
An Emotionally Charged Look at the African-American History
jeaboo22 May 2000
This is a movie that should be viewed by all Americans interested in seeing a slice of Americana which has for so long been ignored. Most will identify with the raw emotion evoked by the plight of these brave and talented men. Black Americans will be moved to tears as we are reminded of what those trailblazers overcame so that future Black soldiers, airmen and every day citizens could take their rightful place in American society, proud of their past and heritage. We all owe a debt of gratitude to the Tuskegee Airmen. This movie makes it clear why.
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9/10
an excellent tribute to some brave men
MartinHafer6 February 2006
I am an American History teacher and I really appreciate this film. While for me, I prefer some of the documentaries featuring the actual airmen, this is a great movie for teens and adults (despite the LARGE amount of swearing you'll hear throughout the film). It takes the true story of these pilots and creates a a fictionalized story--changing names as well as taking a bit of a creative license in telling the story. However, in spirit it is very accurate and is an excellent history lesson. What I particularly like is how blunt and directly it deals with prejudice--it doesn't pull punches or take the politically correct route.

The movie itself is well-written, directed and acted. In fact the film has an excellent ensemble cast--complete with some famous names (such as Lawrence Fishburn and Cuba Gooding) and lots of faces you'll recognize from TV and movies.

Another HBO Production about the Black-American experience that I STRONGLY recommend is MISS EVERS' BOYS. Once again, top-notch production values and an important film for our history.

NOTE: The DVD for this film is pretty poor. While all the content of the movie is there, there is little else. A documentary about the pilots and other background information is conspicuously absent. It's a real shame.
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10/10
HBO never ceases to impress me.
Fishbone-230 August 1999
HBO is by far the best at making original movies and shows. Tuskeegee Airmen is no exception, in fact it's my favorite movie from HBO pictures to date. Stunning acting and a fantastic script. My praise goes out to all involved in this film and I definately hope HBO continues it's long trend of fantastic films and series.
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7/10
A long, hard trip from Alabama to Hitler's Germany.
michaelRokeefe1 January 2001
This movie gives a good look at the first all black squadron of fighter pilots trained in Tuskegee, Alabama. The trials and tribulations of the "Fighting 99th" as they join the 332nd Fighter Group. They gained respect and much deserved recognition by escorting bombers over Germany. The Tuskegee Airmen received over 800 medals for their collective war efforts and never lost a single bomber under their protection. A standard, but memorable WWII flick with its share of 'dog-fights'.

The hard working cast includes: Laurence Fishburne, Cuba Gooding Jr., John Lithgow, Christopher McDonald and Malcolm-Jamal Warner.

NOTE: parts of the movie were filmed in Muskogee, Oklahoma at Davis Field. Local EMTs and firefighters were used as extras.
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HBO continues its role as educator.
Doctor_Bombay16 April 1999
I love these World War II docudramas, and no one does them better than HBO. They take an important, but little known piece of the war, the focus on an individual, a group, or an action, where heroism, personal fortitude, or some other extremely admirable qualities have prevailed, but sadly overlooked, and build a story around the theme.

They get some great actors, many who have some sort of direct or distant connection to the cause, to contribute. The Tuskegee Airmen loads Larry Fishburne, Cuba Gooding Jr., Courtney B. Vance, Allen Payne, Malcolm Jamal Warner, and Andre Braugher all onto the same plate, and there's plenty of room for great performances from each of them.

The story is a little predictable, a little melodramatic, but no less inspirational.

After you see Tuskegge Airmen check out another HBO movie in this vein (Against the Wall, Rat Pack, Stalin, And the Band Played On, Citizen X, Gotti, Indictment:The McMartin Trial, When Trumpets Fade are some examples) once a week, it's educational, and tonic for your soul.
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10/10
Surprisingly good movie
kennethn10 August 2001
Don't think this movie was ever very big in Europe, hadn't even heard the title of the movie before I saw it. I noticed Fishburne and fingured out it would be a movie worth watching. And I was not disappointed. The plot is excellent, taking place in a black pilot group during the World War. I think this might film gets a bit more realistic view on the not so glory sides of the US military, while still the 'weak' win. Excellent plot, excellent acting, definitly worth seing.
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Powerful Historical drama about the first squadron of negro air pilots during WW2.
mdeasy21 February 2000
Tuskegee Airmen is a timeless movie. Lawrence Fishburn plays the role of grudging hero to its maximum potential. The bad guys are racist and ignorant, but they are consistently confronted with the truth of their stupidity. This movie tells the tale, without an overtly biased point of view. There are certainly black men who failed to qualify as pilots during WW2, just as there were white. The racial struggle is brought to light without alienating anyone. The acting is extraordinary, the air fight scenes are power packed and the story is life itself. You must see this film.
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5/10
Very shallow and even laughable bad at times.
Boba_Fett113814 April 2011
Normally I'm quite fond of movies featuring underdog stories, so to speak. The type of movie and story in which a persons or persons against all odds achieve great things. And to be honest I also really expected to like this movie, since it has a good reputation, features lots of great actors and had the type of story I expected to love. But it instead turned out to be a very shallow and melodramatic piece.

The story of the movie sounds so great on paper and also seems like one that needs to be told and heard, about a group of Afro American fighter pilots who served and fought during WW II, despite of all the prejudices and racism they had to face. But I'm sorry, I just never felt like they were having a hard time getting their training, getting accepted and simply get to do everything a Caucasian fighter pilot was also allowed to do. Nobody is really holding them back or trying to work against them from achieving anything and to just simply do their part and as far as the racism in this movie goes; it comes across as simply stupid and something that got forced in. It's very unrealistic honestly. I'm not saying that this never happened and it most likely did but the way it got presented in this movie made it seem very unlikely though. It made the story and just overall important message of the movie very shallow. So I just can't say that the film-makers are doing much justice to the true story and heroes.

And there is also really far too little happening in this movie and everything was extremely predictable, to be honest. First half hour of the movie is being very blah blah but once the action kicks in it becomes painfully apparent why they didn't featured any from the start on. The action is absolutely horrible! First of all the editing is extremely weak and the air fights don't even get resolved properly but what is actually laughable is that for all of the true dock fighting and stuff blowing up they used actual war footage from WW II. So just imaging, a modern 1995 movie, featuring grainy WW II footage from the '40's, right in the middle of the action sequences. At first I was honestly thinking it was some kind of editing trick and the air men were still in the middle of their training, pretending to be attacking ground targets, with WW II footage put in as sort of training for the viewers to see what they are pretending to hit. But the movie is not doing it once, not twice but ALL THE TIME during all of the battle sequences.

The movie also just never gave me the feeling that it was supposed to be a war movie. The movie looked like it was set at the same place, all the time and there is never any sense of danger of an ongoing war, even though people of course get killed in this. This seems to happen very randomly though and without ever an epic battle or heroic action. Stupidity is most often what kills the characters in this movie and this really doesn't seem very respectful to any of those who truly flew and fought in WW II.

Yes, this all is of course really due to the fact that this movie didn't had a big budget behind it but can this really serve as an excuse? I mean, when something is bad and it doesn't work out it is simply bad. This movie simply shouldn't ever had been made with such a small budget behind it.

Not even all of the fine actors that are in this can spice up things. I mean it has Oscar nominees Laurence Fishburne and John Lithgow and Oscar winner Cuba Gooding Jr. in it, among many other great actors. Their characters all remain extremely shallow, as does the rest of the story. It's really not a powerful or emotional movie to watch but more one that forces stuff upon you with its melodramatic elements and very stereotypical characters. Such a waste of all the talent involved with this.

But honestly, it's not an horrible movie to watch. I'm making it sound much worse than it is to watch actually but I just can't think of any reason though why anyone should ever watch this in the first place, even though it features an important historical story. You are better off reading a book about it I guess, also since this movie actually takes lots of liberties with the truth as well.

5/10

http://bobafett1138.blogspot.com/
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So Much Talent. So Much Wasted.
hlcepeda7 April 2004
Consider this scenario: The powers-that-be (ostensibly with every good intention), having offered a select group of talented African-Americans the vehicle by which they could prove themselves, then proceed to undermine the laudable efforts of those very same African-Americans. What I have described is one of the major underpinnings of The Tuskegee Airmen.

Sadly, I have also described what occurred in said film's creation and production process.

Thwarted and hobbled by truncated events, a rather thin, basic script, embarrassingly cartoonish air combat dialogue, pedestrian direction, dicey editing, some poor continuity, and a woefully anemic budget, this HBO attempt never reaches the lofty heights that it otherwise could have attained, never realizes what should have been - and what history deserved. The acting notwithstanding, the end result of this unpolished affair amounted to nothing more than an errand list being checked off; such was the quality of the production value. Apart from the "live" air-to-air action, the battle scenes are populated by enough unrestored and colorized WWII stock footage to have temporarily drained the National Archives. Adding further insult, the production elves carelessly managed to drop in approximately five seconds of Vietnam carpet-bombing footage; no excuse here could ever suffice.

Only the impassioned performances of key cast members truly propel this film - at least getting it off the sticky tarmac, but not far enough to fully complete its mission. Noteworthy, though, is Laurence Fishburne as the crazy-for-flying Hannibel Lee Jr., Christopher McDonald as the racist major, dubiously named Sherman Joy, Courtney B. Vance as the pragmatic Lt. Jeffrey Glenn, and - most noteworthy of all - Andre Braugher as Lt. Col. Benjamin O. Davis. I dare anyone to ignore Mr. Braugher when he is running at full-throttle. He is, arguably, this country's best actor, and it is impossible to take your eyes off of him. What a waste of talent!

This tragic squandering is compounded by the fact that a feature drama - anything other than a documentary - was 50 years in coming; now that it has been made, its very existence may defer a proper telling for a long time to come. The significance and gravity of the subject matter deserved a rousing, blockbuster treatment - which broaches this question: why would an unmitigated disaster (both historically and in film content) such as 2001's Pearl Harbor warrant such a great influx of attention and funding, while a story of victory on all levels be denied so much? Anyone interested in answers should look to Hollywood, the almighty marketing and demographics gods, and maybe the other Maj. Joys still out there.

My personal peccadillos aside, in first approaching The Tuskegee Airmen, I feared my penchant for military aviation and historical fairness would pervert my (hopefully) objective critique and unduly merit this HBO effort. On both points, my fears were far off-target. Performances? Within effective range! A good hit! 9 out of 10. Production? A dud! Call out the bomb squad! 3 out of 10. Overall Rating: 6.0
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1/10
The worst movie I´ve seen for a long time..
I.K6 January 2000
I dont think this movie is anything special, there have been a dozen other movies on "Racism" and many other movies on WW2 air combat which have been better.

The one thing that caught my attention are the horrible aerial scenes which lack realism, for example the laughable scene in which one of the pilots sinks a destroyer with his six .50 caliber machine guns, was that for real?

Another thing is how the same guy destroys a Me-109 fighter, In one scene the guy is on the same altitude with the german on the next scene he´s above the enemy and on his six o'clock.

In the end of the film there´s a lot of talk how these guys did not lose a single bomber to enemy action and how they shot down the first German jets etc..

Wrong again, I have not heard anything about the 332nd Fighter Groups jet kills, the first jets were shotdown by the British Mosquito fighters in France. Secondly I dont think there´s any big deal on how the group did not lose any bombers, if one knows anything about WW2 aerial combat history one would know that there was very little Axis aerial activity in the Northern Italy where the 332nd operated, the main forces of the Luftwaffe were set against the 8th AF in Germany.

From what I´ve read this FG did not produce a single ace (a pilot with five kills) when for example the 20th FG in England had 42 aces in its ranks.

Instead of this outrageous "movie" Mr. Markowitz could have made a film on a subject which deserves one, the best fighter pilots the world has known; Erich Hartmann, the man who shot down 352 planes (more than the whole 332nd FG) or maybe Hans-Joachim Marseille, the man who shot down 17 planes in one day, or a movie on Georg-Peter Eder a Luftwaffe ace who who escorted a shot up B-17 to its base, refusing to shoot down the helpless men.
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9/10
History
Rudest16 June 2005
Warning: Spoilers
There is not enough history out there of what really occurred with our black soldiers during WWII. This is a wonderful account of overcoming discrimination when there should not have been any; when we should all have been working together towards defeating a common enemy.

The actors did an excellent job of portraying the conditions under which they were treated. They were treated almost as poorly as Japanese Americans were treated at that time. It was sad that we had not come farther since the Civil War in our attitudes towards our black brothers and sisters. Underneath our skin we are all the same. We should be thankful for all they did for us no matter how poorly we treated them.

We should also be thankful to HBO for bringing us this excellent movie so that we could see what this truly heroic group of soldiers did for us during WWII.
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6/10
Off We Go....
rmax3048237 March 2017
Nice flight scenes. We follow the first "Negro" pilots through their training in Alabama, where they suffer the usual insults and some of them are washed out or die. They begin in Boeing biplanes and in advanced training use T-6 Texans. Want to see what a Texan looks like? Watch any movie before CGI, when they invariably impersonated Japanese Zeros. Some of the footage is from gun cameras inserted into the movie, as is some footage from "The Battle of Britain". At one point, attacked by Me-109s, they shoot down a Focke-Wulf 190. And they blow up a Japanese destroyer off Italy.

None of this is irritating because the narrative is so strong and the performances are mostly very good, despite the required stilted speeches about whose country are we fighting for. Andre Braugher plays the real-life Benjamin Davis -- and he does it to a T, with little drama and maximum effectiveness. He's an exceptional actor.

John Lithgow plays a dilatory senator who has absolute proof that the Negro brain is different from the white brain in a way that makes them sluggish and unfit for aerial combat. It seems crazy now but, difficult as it is to believe, whole swaths of the country felt the same way in 1943. Hell, into 1953 and later.

It's not a subtle movie. Nothing is much hinted at or suggested. If there's an emotion it's all spelled out for the view in the dialog "E-M-O-T-I-O-N." And in fact the movie itself, pregnant with promise, is almost ruined by the dialog during dogfights. "Take that, Kraut, and say hello to Hitler for me." That's verbatim and it's straight out of a flag-waving martial movie from the early war years, or out of some comic book.

It's well worth catching, especially if you like airplanes as much as I do -- although I must say they haven't treated me well over the years. Just shut your ears through some of the shouting, which falls just short of Henry V's "Once more unto the breach."
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9/10
What a movie!
thejoo0511 January 2007
So this is an HBO special movie about the true story of the Tuskegee Airmen in WWII. I first saw this movie when I was younger and fell in love with it. I thought it sends a great message to the people who watch it. Such as the understanding that no matter if your black or white, you are still a person who can do anything as good as anyone else.

The only real downfall is that the ending is kinda cheesy, like the one white pilot learns the real value of the message. But in all, its very entertaining, and well worth giving it a watch.

If you like WWII movies and/or into Air Force movies, I strongly recommend that you add it to your library. If not, give it a watch, you might be surprised.
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10/10
Tuskegee
morgan_lefaye30 July 2006
Warning: Spoilers
I believe that this movie tells the story of the brave, the proud and the true, no matter their race. When the men were shot down, I cried, both because it was an emotional thing, and because I knew the real men these actors portrayed died fighting for our country, and their country, despite what others said.

I don't know if the part when Peoples killed himself was true, but I know that he wanted to fight for his country more than anything, and they wouldn't let him. They took away his life. He just finished the job.

When that white bomber pilot REQUESTED the 332nd, even after he spat at their feet(figuratively speaking of course), that made my heart soar. He was the best man in the tent, just because he didn't care if blacks were escorting them, as long as they were escorting them safely.

If I sound cheesy, I don't care, because this movie made my day.
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9/10
Excellent, should be compared to Go For Broke
Starry-410 June 1999
This is an important movie that needs to be seen by people of all colours. It's one of those movies that should be shown in school because it shows a little known but important facet of the history of WWII.

The movie is a bit slow in places, but the heartfelt, understated performances by the all-star cast more than makes up for it. After all, it's their characters that we are interested in, so you enjoy spending time with them. There are some straightforward scenes in this movie, such as when the trainees set a damaged plane down by a chaingang in Alabama, and you see the look of astonishment in the eyes of the all African-American chaingang and their white "bosses". But it works due to the honesty of the performances, and the knowledge that things like this really happened.

This movie, which I believe is little-known, should be compared to another forgotten movie, Go For Broke, a superb 1950s production about the only Japanese-American unit fighting in WWII. Like the real life African-American airmen, the real life Japanese-American unit racked up an absolutely astonishing record of service. I thought the Go For Broke story to be more involving due to the range of experiences and emotions displayed, plus more evident bitterness towards how they are treated (eg. Go For Broke deals with how Italian-American servicemen are treated much better than the Japanese-Amercans) but I hold more movies - and the servicemen of non-white descent portrayed - in equally sky-high esteem. Both movies make you want to seek out the surviving servicemen of these groups and shake their hands.
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HBO upholds its role as educator.
Doctor_Bombay30 April 1999
I love these World War II docu-dramas, and no one does them better than HBO. They take an important, but little known piece of the war, the focus on an individual, a group, or an action, where heroism, personal fortitude, or some other extremely admirable qualities have prevailed, but sadly overlooked, and build a story around the theme.

They get some great actors, many who have some sort of direct or distant connection to the cause, to contribute. The Tuskegee Airmen loads Larry Fishburne, Cuba Gooding Jr., Courtney B. Vance, Allen Payne, Malcolm Jamal Warner, and Andre Braugher all onto the same plate, and there's plenty of room for great performances from each of them.

The story is a little predictable, a little melodramatic, but no less inspirational.

After you see Tuskegee Airmen check out another HBO movie in this vain (Against the Wall, Rat Pack, Stalin, And the Band Played On, Citizen X, Gotti, Indictment:The McMartin Trial, When Trumpets Fade are some examples), it's educational, and tonic for your soul.
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Excellent Movie
jlclinkenbeard4 March 2002
I love this movie. Right now my History teacher is showing it to us to talk about how the African-American men in Tuskegee were treated. It's very close to the real thing. I did research after I saw the movie and it was really close. It's a great film that I think everyone should see.
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Uplifting Movie
badoobie4 October 1998
Tuskegee Airmen is a movie I would recommend to anyone. I have probably seen this movie about 10 times and never get tired of it. If you are into WWII movies this is one you want to see. Not only is it based on a true story, but it will lift your spirits and has superb acting.
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10/10
Great story, done extremely well; I love this movie.
reganlaptop13 May 2003
I watch this movie about once a year, and always find it uplifting even though I can almost recite all of the dialogue. When the racist bomber captain asks for the 337th "to take me to Berlin and back", and Col. Davis later tells Hannibal that they were "not assigned; we were requested" for the first bombing of Berlin, it is just incredible. This movie is the story of people who overcame incredible adversity, under the most stressful of conditions (war and racism) and persevered, accomplishing a great good. It is a poignant reminder that persistence and determination alone are vital elements of success.
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A powerful movie with a realistic balance of good and bad
NonnaYobidness19 July 2002
7/17/2002: Benjamin O. Davis, Jr., leader of the Tuskegee Airmen and the Air Force's first black general, was laid to rest at Arlington National Cemetery.

I haven't seen any original HBO programming in a few years, but it sounds like it may have gone a bit downhill. The Tuskegee Airmen, though, is a prime example of the kind of great movie HBO is capable of producing.

The Tuskegee Airmen tells that story of the first black American fighter pilots. The movie is packed with everything you would expect from a World War Two movie about black pilots: racism, failure, triumph, death, fear, courage, joy, grief and a fair amount of aerial combat. Many movies lean too far to one side or the other of the joy/depression spectrum. The Tuskegee Airmen does a great job of bringing realistic balance to real-life experience. The characters experiences are neither completely wonderful nor completely awful. Bad experiences are tempered by good and vice-versa.

If you watch this movie with no preconceived notions about the content and no agenda, you will likely come away with a new appreciation for the struggles faced by those who, through design or by accident, become the first to break through an established barrier. Even if you take away the actual premise of the movie and forget that it is about black or white and forget that it is a war movie, it still stands strong on the quality of the acting and the great story telling. We've all succeeded and we've all failed and, like it or not, you share that with every person on this planet regardless of their skin color, religion, sex or nationality. It is very easy to put yourself in the place of any character in this movie because they are all so nakedly human, and that's what makes it great to watch.

Finally, this film is based on a true story and that always adds a little something to a movie.
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9/10
Wow
harperdk27 February 2002
This movie is great, but at times hard to watch. I cannot believe people do exist present/past that actually thought this way. It was amazing to see how the Airmen had to OVERCOME a bevy of obstacles, just to FIGHT for the country that HATES THEM. There were a few scenes were I had to cry, it was heavy on me! The landing in the country w/ the prisoners... The hearing before the Special Committee.... And finally when the white pilot requests the 332nd.

The facts of Airmen ordeals is riveting, I hope in life it doesn't take this type of example to prove to other ignorant people that African Americans, and minorities as a whole have something of value to offer. I often wonder to myself, 'Could White America, deal with the oppression, that they have dealt out, if the script was reversed?' I know for a fact they would have a REAL SERIOUS problem with it!
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7/10
Is Sen. Conyers fictional???
raul150526 December 2006
Good movie, Laurence Fishborne is pretty damn good. My brother pointed out that he plays alongside Cuba Gooding in Boys in the Hood. Almost forgot. Anyways...I can't for the life of me find a US Senator named Conyers...is John Lithgow's character based on another Senator? I've looked up the US Congressional Biographical Database and nothing...zilch. Does anyone have any clue who he's portraying...or was it a fictional character. Just wondering. Was it instigated by that character's real life family members. OK now I'm just writing to fill in the blanks. Since this damn thing says it needs a minimum lenght of 10 lines. Now I'm regretting that I even started to write. But I'm curious. Very curious. Kinda mad, but curious...wait, now I'm furious.
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