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The Quiet Man at Midway

Tags: film midway
the buzz on the chat rooms about Midway,  the latest Film about the crucial World War II battle of Midway, says that the film is good:

Just ignore the low rating by the PC critics at Rotten Tomatoes, who hate anything patriotic: the audience approval even there is high.

Which is ironic, since it wasn't financed by Rah rah  Hollywood patriot  I mean an anti American PC left wing Hollywood, but partly with Chinese money, and hey, here in Asia, a lot of old people still remember the war, not to mention their relatives, both military and civilians, who were killed in that conflict) so I guess they don't care if it makes ordinary American soldiers look good because hey, we were both allies fighting a murderous enemy back then.

the background of Midway is that it was a turn around in the Pacific War, since if America had lost that battle, the fleet would not have been able to stop the Japanese from taking over Hawaii and maybe even bombing the west coast.

this vlog discusses the history behind the film (actually their impression from the previews, since the film hadn't yet been released), and the narrator mentions two previous films made about the battle.

the 1976 film is a classic that still is shown on TV now and then... but the narrator then he goes on to mention that a lot of the photography of the airplanes attacking actually came from  an earlier film, the award winning short film released in 1942 (usually dismissed nowadays as a "propaganda film" of course).

So who filmed that 1942 short film about the Battle of Midway, and more importantly: how did they film all those special effects for the 1942 film?

And the answer: It was filmed by director John Ford, best known of his westerns and for the film The Quiet Man, about his parent's beloved Ireland.

As to special effects: DUH. What special effects: That was the real thing.

In this interview, from the Naval History Blog, Ford himself explains how he ended up on an isolated island in the middle of the Pacific, filming gooney birds and documenting the exciting boring life of the Navy personnel on a typical backwater tropical island, only to have a battle drop in on him.

the interview is fascinating, so if you are a military history buff, read the whole thing.

Wikipedia has a summary of Ford's work during World WarII ...
it notes he also was present during the D Day landings and took a lot of film there, but which was never released because 

Ford explained in a 1964 interview that the US Government was "afraid to show so many American casualties on the screen"
And that film was put in storage, and lost.


However, his film about Midway is available on Youtube, and yes, the gooney birds are in it (fast forward to 2:20).

This post first appeared on Finest Kind Clinic And Fishmarket, please read the originial post: here

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The Quiet Man at Midway


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