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Movies where you can see classic aircraft

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posted on Mar, 30 2006 @ 06:43 AM
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This thread is inspired by Browno's 'first gen jets' thread below and is intended as a reference where us plane buffs might find footage of aircraft in flight.

That you can see Spitfires in 'The Battle of Britain' and Lancasters in 'The Dambusters' may be a bit obvious, but may be worth noting to our overseas members, however I also want this to be a source of the less obvious and more obscure gems of aerial footage. Maybe a few people don't know that stunning footage of Mosquito's is available in '633 SQUADRON' but surely everyone knows about the Tomcat footage in Top Gun


Maybe less well known is the brilliant footage in the 'The Final Countdown' starring Kirk Douglas and Martin Sheen, this incudes a dogfight over Pearl Harbour between Mitsubishi Zero's and F-14 Tomcats! Guess who wins that! This movies costs £4.99 in the UK on DVD and is well worth a look.

However other films show rare types that plane spotters will drool over.

'The Sound Barrier' by David Lean even includes 'Starring the De Havilland Comet, De Havilland Vampire Supermarine Attacker and Supermarine Swift' writ large on the credits along with the actors names! Is this star billing worth it? YOU BET! Get this on DVD for some classic jet action, including the Romantic hero lead taking his wife, on her first ever flight, to Egypt for a weekend Jaunt in a Vampire trainer he is delivering to the Egyptian Air Force, the old smoothy! In the UK it is double billed with a John Mills comedy on the same disc, this is nothing to do with aviation and I'd never heard of it but I enjoyed it.

Another unusual film from the same time is 'No Highway In The Sky' starring James Stewart as a Farnborough boffin who works out that the design of a new airliner is flawed, this was made years before the Comet disasters occurred but yet is spookily prescient of that catastrophe. The airliner is completely fictional but there is some footage of the Gloster Ace in it that must be completely unique. Oh yes, and a classic shot of Jimmy Stewart emerging from an RAF Lancaster after the airline refused to fly him home because they thought he was mental.

Please feel free to add more interesting movie 'spotters guides'


[edit on 30-3-2006 by waynos]




posted on Mar, 30 2006 @ 07:10 AM
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Nice list. I'm a bit of an aircraft enthousiast myself.

But, Mitsubishi Zero's dogfighting F14 Tomcats?...
Is "The Final Countdown" a time travel movie?



posted on Mar, 30 2006 @ 07:20 AM
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Yes, the USS Forrestal goes through a rip in time and ends up in Dec 1941, its a cracking story and with a nice little twist at the end.



posted on Mar, 30 2006 @ 08:09 AM
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Don't forget the B-17 's in the Memphis Belle,

Midway with Charlton Heston, Henry Fonda and Robert Mitchum,

And one of my favourites TORA! TORA! TORA! thats got brilliant effects for its time period(think its early 70 's) very balanced portrayl of both sides , great aerial scenes , no actual Zeros were used as there are none flying (don't know if that s still true today) so North American AT-6 trainers were modified to look like them .


The twelve Zeros (fighters) were North American AT-6 or SNJ trainers with cockpits, fins, wingtips and some other parts modified.
The nine Vals (dive bombers) were Vultee BT-13 or BT-15 trainers with lengthened fuselages, new engines, undercarriage-fairings and reshaped fins and wingtips.

The nine Kates (torpedo- and level bombers) were a composite of AT-6/SNJ front end and wings, and BT-13/15tails. Plus lengthened fuselages and new cockpits with an extra seat added.

For most scenes, dummies, dressed in Japanese flying uniforms, occupied the seats behind the pilots.

The cost for the conversions was about $ 30.000 each. After the movie was finished, the planes were sold for around $ 1.500 each.

rest of article on Tora! Tora! Tora! www.saunalahti.fi...



posted on Mar, 30 2006 @ 08:17 AM
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I think the zero's in the film I was talking about earlier were these self same converted T-6's that were made for Tora Tora Tora, I'm sure I read that somewhere.



posted on Mar, 30 2006 @ 08:38 AM
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Originally posted by waynos
I think the zero's in the film I was talking about earlier were these self same converted T-6's that were made for Tora Tora Tora, I'm sure I read that somewhere.


they were the same ones (some of them any way) used in midway .



posted on Mar, 30 2006 @ 09:12 AM
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"Wings" (1927).... great footage of WWI place... and a look at a VERY young Gary Cooper.
"The Blue Max" (1966 - I think) more WWI German and Allied aircraft.
"A Wing and a Prayer" (1943?)...aircraft carrier warfare... TBF Avengers, Hellcats... etc.



posted on Mar, 30 2006 @ 09:26 AM
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What about that zeppelin in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade



posted on Mar, 30 2006 @ 10:03 AM
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12 O'clock high is apersonal favorite
Tuskegee airmen, The flying tigers,flying leathernecks, Midway. They are all good movies.



posted on Mar, 30 2006 @ 10:09 AM
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The film Strategic Air Command starring James Stewart features a great many interior and exterior scenes of the B-36 Peacemaker as well as the B-47 Stratojet. The sound of a B-36 flying overhead is amazing.

Also the carrier in The Final Countdown is the USS Nimitz.



posted on Mar, 30 2006 @ 10:18 AM
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"The Right Stuff" has got some great scenes with the Bell X-1 and B-29, as well as a beautiful F-104



posted on Mar, 30 2006 @ 10:28 AM
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"the great waldo pepper" with robert redford...wwI aircraft. "jet pilot" with john wayne....mediocre story, but great flying done by chuck yeager.

my personal favorite is already listed above: "strategic air command." jimmy stewart did his own flying in that one.



posted on Mar, 30 2006 @ 10:30 AM
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Waynos, I don't know if you're old enough to recall this, but do you remember a BBC kid's show called "The Aeronauts"?
It ran during the early 70's, usually during school holidays. It was an over-dubbed French series, showing the exploits of a couple of Armee De L'Air pilots. Loads of great footage of Mirage 111s and Super Mysteres!

No-one that I know remembers this, but I'm sure I'm not going mad...



posted on Mar, 30 2006 @ 11:03 AM
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Also the carrier in The Final Countdown is the USS Nimitz.


Yes it is, my mistake. I knew it was big one





Waynos, I don't know if you're old enough to recall this, but do you remember a BBC kid's show called "The Aeronauts"?


Yes I do! I never understood what was going on but I loved the jets


Amazingly I was thinking about this show only this morning and was trying to remember whether they used Mirages or Super Mysteres! So it was both then


There is another one in which I seem to be alone remembering it, about 1978 there was a series called 'Wings' on Sunday nights on BBC1 about a group of RFC recruits and it followed them through training and onto the front line, I remeber one of the main characters was called 'Charles Gaylion' while the main lead character was called Alan Farmer and I also rememebr them trying to attach machine guns to the wing struts of their BE.2's but the wings collapsed when they test fire them. Does anyone else remember this show?



posted on Mar, 30 2006 @ 11:32 AM
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"The Flying Tigers" - P-40
"Black Sheep Squadron" - F4U Corsair (Japanese Zeros were SNJs)
"The Tuskegee Airmen" - P-51 Mustang
"Sink the Bismark" - Fairly Swordfish
"The Battle of Britain" Spitfires, Hurricanes and Me-109's (most dogfight footage was R/C models but plenty of actual footage)

"The Dam Busters" - Lancaster
"Midway" - previously mentioned planes and the PBY Catalina
"Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo" B-25 Mitchell



posted on Mar, 30 2006 @ 11:44 AM
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"The Battle of Britain" Spitfires, Hurricanes and Me-109's (most dogfight footage was R/C models but plenty of actual footage)


not most of it, only the mid air explosions and collisions plus all the stuka footage (because none exist) was with R/C Models, the rest of it is all genuine, about 80% of it, including dogfights flown by Confederate Air Force pilots..

[edit on 30-3-2006 by waynos]



posted on Mar, 30 2006 @ 12:24 PM
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Of coarse if you ever wanted to buy a classic, I would try these guys

They recently sold the B-17(3 million USD) N9563Z"Fuddy Duddy" used in the 1961 movie "The War Lover"

[edit on 30-3-2006 by uuhelpus]



posted on Mar, 31 2006 @ 03:36 AM
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I do vaguely remember the TV series "Wings" being on, but I don't recall ever watching it.
There was also a 70's ITV series called "The Pathfinders", about a wartime Lancaster Pathfinder (Oddly enough...
) Squadron. All R/C models IIRC.



posted on Mar, 31 2006 @ 05:34 AM
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Originally posted by waynos

That you can see Spitfires in 'The Battle of Britain' and Lancasters in 'The Dambusters' may be a bit obvious,...

[edit on 30-3-2006 by waynos]


I used to live next door to an arms dealer who specialised in antique weapons. He mixed in some very interesting circles. One of his friends collected military vehicles and was contacted by the makers of 'The Battle of Britain' to ask if they could use his German army vehicle. He agreed on condition that he was allowed to appear as the driver in the film, which he did.

As a matter of interest, I was advised that the Messerschmitt Bf 109s that appeared in the film were all ex Spanish air force and were actually fitted with Merlin engines, not the original radial engine.

Apparently the giveaway is the extra bulge underneath the nose if you look closely at the film. The Merlins could not be accommodated in the original engine space.

[edit on 31-3-2006 by Englishman_in_Spain]



posted on Mar, 31 2006 @ 05:34 AM
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MODS please delete, duplicated posting.

Thanks.

[edit on 31-3-2006 by Englishman_in_Spain]



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