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Customer Review

61 of 69 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars See it for a terrific documentary, some great dogfights and a beautiful film transfer to Blu ray, June 11, 2012
This review is from: Red Tails [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)
I'm going to address the Blu ray version of this film as I had not seen it in the theaters when it was released. The best thing about the disc isn't the theatrical film itself but "Double Victory: The Tuskegee Airmen at War," the 1 hour documentary "extra." While the theatrical film addresses some of the history of the courageous Tuskegee airmen, the documentary focuses of the "second war" back in the United States. Using excellent interviews with many of the survivors of the Red Tails and their African-American bomber crew confederates, many of the injustices they lived through are fleshed out. They are supplemented by some remarkable film footage from the time. These great Americans effectively launched the Civil Rights movement even before Jackie Robinson integrated baseball or Rosa Parks refused to give up her bus seat.

The next best thing about this film is the aerial combat photography, some of which is done with real planes and real pilots and some is done with some amazing CGI and George Lucas's technicians. I was especially taken with the introduction of some early German jet fighters as they engaged the Red Tails' P-51 Mustangs. The other big positive is the magnificent transfer to Blu ray. From the opening scenes the film sparkles in this Lucas authorized release. The colors are bright and vivid. The textures are finely tuned, especially in close ups. The audio likewise is demo ready. As you might expect, the audio is an important feature with planes shooting at each other all over the Italian and German skies. In addition to the aforementioned documentary, other extras include comments by Lucas and director Anthony Hemingway, composer Terrance Blanchard and the cast. There is also a 5 minute feature at how the CGI came into play. The film and the extras are in 1080p with the film shown in a 2.40:1 aspect ratio. The audio is DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1.

Unfortunately the film itself isn't so good. While the actors in key roles are fine, some of the secondary actors come off like bumpkins or amateurs. Of course some of the cornball dialog they are given is equally bad. In a few sequences when the Red Tails are escorting bombers flown by a white crew, the bomber pilots make some of the most ridiculous comments that I had to laugh. I don't know if this was done intentionally or not but it comes across as just dumb. There are also a couple scenes with the black pilots that slang terms and pronunciations are spoken that were not used in 1944. What is important is that this story got visibility with this film. It could have been better.
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Showing 1-10 of 27 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Jun 23, 2012 9:41:15 AM PDT
It's about time someone actually mentioned the quality of the disc itself. Thanks.

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 23, 2012 12:33:24 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jun 23, 2012 12:33:41 PM PDT
M. Oleson says:
You're welcome.

Posted on Jun 25, 2012 5:58:05 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jun 25, 2012 6:00:48 AM PDT
Knitt-picking Oleson, still compelling......I 'm glad to have this fine film and
am now seriously considering a Blu-ray copy as well. Right on and thanks!

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 6, 2012 10:40:19 AM PDT
Comments regarding slang used in the film that were not used in 1944 is interesting, I was told the same thing by an elderly lady regarding the Help.

Posted on Oct 10, 2012 12:46:36 PM PDT
Samadhi says:
Thank you for a well-written review that addressed everything I needed to know before I purchased the DVD. So many times people get so caught up in the content- whether they agree with the story, the politics, even trying to 'sway' opinions- they forget what these reviews are for. You addressed disc quality, how well it transferred from screen to Blu-Ray disc, the sound AND surprisingly even covered the documentary extra. I had heard and read mostly negative reviews of this movie yet had seen a preview in a theater and was quite interested in the story. Your review helped me decide to buy it instead of waiting for it to show up on HBO or some other premium channel just because you talked about the 'extras'. So now I'm prepared for a nice try at a great story but know exactly what I'm getting. Well done.

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 10, 2012 2:19:21 PM PDT
M. Oleson says:
Thanks for your comments.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 2, 2012 3:05:17 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Dec 2, 2012 3:18:54 PM PST
Pete A. V. says:
Red Tails[[ASIN:B007YJS7G4 Red Tails To Me this was a great movie. I met Four of The The Tuskegee Airmen at an Air Show in Cleveland,Ohio. It was an Honer to Have my picture taken with them. Most of them were in thier late 80,s early 90,s. That was 3 Years ago.
I'm a Veteran of the USAF so I don't expect you to understand!
They Fought, they Died, and They never lost a B-17 Flying Fortress. This plane was a Bomber.
My POINT, It Was a Good Movie If You Know Your History.

Posted on Apr 15, 2013 6:59:39 PM PDT
M. OLESEN, Thank you for a great review. Please clarify, are the 2 count extras on this Blu Ray disc: ASIN: B005LAIGNC? I am asking simply because the Amazon site shows no extras on the disc. The minutes for the 2-disc Blu-Ray and DVD look to be only the 125 minute movie. I would most certainly purchase the Blu-ray + DVD disc, just wondering why the extras are not listed in on the Amazon page. Help! And thanks!!

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 16, 2013 1:04:18 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Apr 16, 2013 1:07:17 PM PDT
M. Oleson says:
The movie itself is 125 minutes. There was a single disc version offered at one time. The 2-disc version includes a DVD version as well as the Blu ray. Here are the extras included on the Blu-ray 2 disc. I suspect the 1 disc Blu ray only has the same extras but can't be certain.

*Double Victory: The Tuskegee Airmen at War (1080p, 1:05:07): Narrated by Cuba Gooding, Jr., this hour-long documentary traces the history of the Tuskegee airmen from their training days until after the war, featuring interviews with several of the surviving pilots.
*George Lucas: Executive Producer (1080p, 3:26): Lucas briefly explains the history of the project.
*Anthony Hemingway: Director (1080p, 5:30): Hemingway describes how he got involved with the project.
*Terrance Blanchard: Composer (1080p, 6:15): A short featurette about the scoring of the film.
*The Cast of Red Tails (1080p, 25:11): Features interviews with all of the main cast members and lots of behind-the-scenes footage.
*Movie Magic (1080p, 5:12): A look at the extremely detailed CGI needed to recreate WWII on screen.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 19, 2013 2:10:22 AM PDT
M. Oleson,

I thank you very much for your time & effort for a great addition to your already exceptional review!
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Review Details



M. Oleson

Location: Fort Worth, TX USA

Top Reviewer Ranking: 473