George Lucas has been rumored to be working on making this film for decades, well here it is and maybe Lucas should have just focused on Star Wars. The story follows the Tuskegee Airmen, an all black WW2 flying unit. The film is essentially a throw back to the old war movies. This and many other problems make Red Tails the stand out as the worst movie of the year and hands down one of the worst war films to come out in a while.
The story we’ve heard before, the airmen must fight through adversity as they gain the respect to fly in the air and fight German aircraft. Their missions mainly were focused on defending American bombers. They saved thousands of lives in the air and took down many German aircraft. So the story is there but the film just started on the wrong foot. It’s main issue is that it is beyond corny. Every character just seems fake and it doesn’t help that the dialogue is just stale. It’s very obvious we’re suppose to like these characters but each one just fits into stereotypes that are hard to ignore. One is really cocky, the other a loud mouth, one is religious… Come on! Don’t send a half dozen characters with thin archs in my face, give me two solid one’s.
The film doesn’t know how to save itself either, the plot strays from the story line way too many times. One character is shot down and is captured. Placed in a POW camp for no reason then he gets to escape ten minutes later. Nothing comes out of this and it’s unclear why it was even in the film. One other character starts up a relationship with a local Italian woman, these scenes are brutal to watch as it’s clear no one involved knew how to make romance work in a film like this. I get it was suppose to be like old war films from the past, problem is we’ve advanced when it comes to story telling. I’m sure your grand father will love this film, because it’s a throw back. For me though I need a lot more in a film like this for me to chew on.
Now the dog fights are fun, but the way obvious CGI makes it hard for one to connect with the action. At many times it looks like a well produced video game. There is no weight to any of the violence. We see a German pilot with a scar on his face. He’s a villain because that’s what he needs to be. He never is really that big of a villain but yet we’re suppose to be happy when people survive his attacks? Also the large amount of death in this film and no one seems to care. Movies like Saving Private Ryan gave war an edge in film because the violence mattered. Spielberg also pulled this off in Warhorse which was a pg-13 rated war film.
In the end you can see what they were trying to do here but the film is just boring. You’ve either seen it before or the lack of weight of anything that’s happening will leave a bad taste in your mouth. If you can see this in the theater for really cheap, some of the action scenes are worth it. Sadly I suggest avoiding this film if you can.