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Nightfighters: The story of the 332nd Fighter Group, Tuskegee Airmen

4.5 out of 5 stars 42 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Nightfighters tells the story of the Tuskegee Airmen, a group of elite black pilots who distinguished themselves during numerous World War II combat missions, despite the segregation and racism that existed in the U.S. military at the time. In 1942, President Franklin Roosevelt set up a flight training program for a small group of black pilots at an airbase in Tuskgee, Alabama. It was widely believed that the "Tuskegee Experiment," as it was called, would confirm a document released years earlier by the American War College, which concluded that African Americans were congenitally incapable of excelling as pilots and in positions of authority in the U.S. military. Under the watchful eye of Lt. Col. Benjamin Davis, West Point's second-ever black graduate, the 332nd Fighter Group never lost a plane during hundreds of missions over Italy and North Africa. Yet as pilots who shielded white-operated American planes from enemy fire, the Tuskegee Airmen and their all-black surgical and support crews were still segregated from their white countrymen and saw their accomplishments largely ignored by the military's establishment. Nightfighters introduces the viewer to many of these extraordinary men including Spann Watson, Woodrow Crockett, Alfred "Chief" Anderson, Louis Purnell, Harry Sheppard, and Dr. Roscoe Brown, among others.

Special Features

None.

Product Details

  • Format: Multiple Formats, Black & White, Color, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    NR
    Not Rated
  • Studio: Xenon
  • DVD Release Date: January 14, 2003
  • Run Time: 52 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (42 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0000714F0
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #64,490 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD Verified Purchase
This DVD covers the origins of the Tuskegee group through interviews of the pilots. How they were loved aircraft before WWII and the politics of black airmen at the time. The interviews started with Chief Charles Alfred Anderson interview while flying a cessna172RG. Harry Sheppard, Spann Watson, Woodrow Crockett, Luke Weathers, Louis Purnell, & DR. Brown were some of the others interviewed through out the DVD, starting with telling their feelings on Davis and expectation from Davis during the training period. The 99th went to North Africa for first deployment, then onto Italy and Cicely missions. Mostly showing P-51B's on the clips with once and awhile a P-40 with no regard to time frame. Next they talk about the addition of more aircraft and the beginning of the 332nd. Not many shots from P-47's and no story of the P-47 group that I was hoping for. They talked about the success of bomber protection and the disappointment of the end of the war to what they had to return to. Two big signs, colored this way, whites that way. This makes for a good PBS show.
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This documentary is extraordinary in that it includes interviews from not only the fighter pilots but the bomber airmen they protected. Further, it highlights the talented, dedicated and successful black Americans who fervently wished to help win the war. I couldn't wait to share this video with my pilot friends. Well done.
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Format: DVD
THIS WAS AN AWESOME STORY. IT WAS VERY INFORMATIVE AND HOPEFULLY HELPFUL IN REMEMBERING OUR HISTORY. THESE MEN FOUGHT WITH GREAT SKILL AND COURAGE.
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Being a WWII buff this is a great addition to my collection for its historical value. I knew a little about the Tuskeegee Airmen but it jumps to life when being told by the actual people.
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A Kid's Review on February 14, 2002
Format: VHS Tape
African Americans receive the opportunity to fly fighter planes in the Air Force. Night Fighters show how African Americans were on their own and that no one would cooperate with them. Some had to learn how to fly, without any help whatsoever. Still, whether they were trained or not, they were segregated from the whites in the Army. While watching this movie, I felt that this was unjust because any whites who would've asked, would have been granted these flying lessons. It also turned out that these African American flyers had more skill than their white counterparts. This movie is educational and informative in the history of America, and what our country went through during World War ll.
-Barry
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Grossly inaccurate and politically correct "affirmative action" driven. The 332nd had the worst combat record of any group during WWII.
Their kill to loss ratio was the worst. Their combat victories per mission was the lowest. Yet their on station deployment was among the highest. To top off these abysmal statistics, the actual size of the 332nd that generated these "group" statistics was 33% LARGER than every other European and Mediterranean theater fighter group, comprising FOUR squadrons to every other group's THREE squadrons. Where other American 8th, 9th and 15th Air Force groups produced as many as 30 or 40 Aces or more (5 enemy aircraft shot down), the 332nd Red Tails couldn't even produce 1 (one) Ace.
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By A Customer on February 13, 2002
Format: VHS Tape
The Tuskegee "Night fighters" documentary clearly displays the unfair treatment African Americans received during World War II. They were strictly segregated from the white air force, not being able to operate and fly airplanes. They worked as chefs and latrine cleaners, if they were to work in the air force at all. One of the most horrible acts against the African Americans, during World War II, was the Tuskegee Syphilis Experiment.
The US Public Health Service (PHS) took 399 African Americans, from poor areas of Alabama, and conducted an experiment. They followed the state of syphilis in each African American. Even worse, the PHS lied to the victims, telling them they were being treated for bad blood. There was no intention of curing them of anything.
African Americans were prohibited from flying with the white pilots. They were separated from the whites during training, and treated "under" them. Plane trainers intentionally tried to fail the black pilots, so they wouldn't be able to enter the USAF. Watch Nightfighers and you will be taken into the harsh reality of what African Americans went through during WWII. - Pete
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A Kid's Review on February 13, 2002
Format: VHS Tape
Such a film as Night fighters is extremely captivating in its content. I found the movie profoundly interesting and mind-opening. There are many surprising events in this film, such as how Benjamin O. Davis was so isolated at the West Point Academy and how the Tuskegee Airmen were so unappreciated and disregarded. I was also surprised at how kind the black men were to the whites, when they landed at their base and at the lack of kindness returned, on the part of the whites. This movie was very informative and opened my eyes to the way things used to be. It showed me how unfair life was to the African Americans in this country. I thought this movie was excellently done and I would recommend it to anyone who is interested in the topic. - Amy
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