Synopsis: Loosely based and inspired by true events and individuals, a group of young American join the Lafayette Escadrille, a French squadron of flyers in the First World War. This film follows a group of pilots from signing up to becoming experienced airmen with multiple kills.
Main Cast: James Franco, Jean Reno, Abdul Salis, Tyler Labine, David Ellison, Martin Henderson, Philip Winchester, Jennifer Decker
The Hype: Absolutely none. I never heard of this movie until coming across it by chance the other day. It was a total disaster at the cinema and made its way to DVD very quickly to try to recoup some of the massive losses the film made. I reckoned it looked decent enough for me to watch from the trailer and so I did.
What I Thought: I really enjoyed this movie. I think its performance at the box office is a huge pity. OK, so it is inspired by real life people and events, which means that most of it is fiction, but some things are relatively true, but that should not let it be judged in such a harsh way as it was upon its release. The dogfight scenes are exiting and pretty realistic by all accounts and the effects are nicely done. Some of the actors even took flying lessons including James Franco who at the time was just making the breakthrough as a big name in Hollywood. With the culmination of some aspects of history and some fictitious times, the story is nice and I thought it flowed quite well. There are some errors with the planes being used, but I think that is just a bit of artistic license to differentiate between the goodies and the baddies so not a big deal.
Conclusions: Ignore the petty small mistakes and just watch it as a story film without too much thought and you should enjoy this movie. Its slick in its production, the acting ain’t too shabby and the dogfights are pretty tense when they start. Definitely worth a look. I think I preferred this movie to Red Tails which had better success and marketing.