Only six months after the attack on Pearl Harbor, The US Navy decisively defeated an attack by the Imperial Japanese Navy at the Battle of Midway (June 4-7, 1942) inflicting irreparable damage on the Japanese fleet. This was Japan's first naval defeat since the Battle of Shimonoseki Straits in 1863. Military historian John Keegan called it "the most stunning and decisive blow in the history of naval warfare."
Sounds like a big deal, huh? Well, Hollywood responds in a big way with this week's feature Midway. Directed by Jack Smight the film features an international cast of superstars including Charlton Heston, Henry Fonda, James Coburn, Glenn Ford, Hal Holbrook, Toshiro Mifune, Robert Mitchum, Cliff Robertson, Robert Wagner, James Shigeta, Pat Morita, Robert Ito and Christina Kokubo, among others. John Williams supplied the musical score and Harry Stradling, Jr. the acclaimed cinematography.
One of the movie's big "pros" or "cons" depending who you talk to are all the action/combat sequences. Do they intensify the story or drag the movie out. Many are stock footage from the 1970 film Tora! Tora! Tora! and 1942 newsreels that seem to downgrade the overall quality. Regardless, this classic harkens back to a time of heroic American made war epics with large ensemble casts that are rarely seen today.
Please note: As I've mentioned before (WMW intro post) these features are not necessarily meant to "the best" war movies or even all considered high quality films. What I hope to offer here is something interesting and entertaining enough to watch during hobby time at least. Something that can be found for free on YouTube and played on your computer or similar gadget sitting by your hobby area. Unfortunately these posts are also limited in choice and quality by what I can find on YouTube, which also includes putting up with subtitles from time to time. Anyway, I hope you enjoy the movie!
Nine members of the cast near a Wildcat fighter on the flight deck of the
USS Lexington, which was used for shooting and today is a museum ship.
Battlefield: The Battle of Midway (Documentary)