494. Memphis Belle (1990)

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6.8 Fails to live up to the classics
  • Acting 6.8
  • Directing 6.9
  • Story 6.7
  • User Ratings (0 Votes) 0

Starring: Matthew Modine, Eric Stoltz, Tate Donovan

Director: Micahel Caton-Jones

Running Time: 107 mins


Memphis Belle is a British film about the historic US bomber, the Memphis Belle, and its 25th and final bombing mission during World War Two, where an unexpected challenge faces its legendary crew.

In what could be a very exciting, dramatic and historically intriguing story, this is a very disappointing film, taking a very Hollywood-ified look into the historic story of the Memphis Belle, adding extra cheese throughout, ruining the feel of a traditional Second World War film.

The first forty minutes of this film are slightly unnecessary for the remainder, as it’s largely just a period of character establishment. However, the characters are pretty much cemented within the first scene, so the following forty minutes are quite repetitive and dull to watch, and after establishing the significance of the Memphis Belle, there’s not much else to learn from it.

Therefore, the film is not at all entertaining nor interesting to watch for the first part, however there comes a stage of action and excitement later on that completely changes the atmosphere of the film.

The whole film changes into an action spectacle, and becomes a whole lot more entertaining to watch the Nazi-Allied dogfights, not from an exterior view, like in Battle Of Britain, but from the inside of the plane, with the characters, which makes it both more interesting and emotional to watch.

Then, at the end, there is an exciting climax, with the desperate limp back to base of the Memphis Belle, and then the dramatic landing at the very end, which is definitely a whole lot more exciting than any other part of the film.

However, it is just a little bit too cheesy in the end. Rather than focussing on the historical and dramatic aspects of the story, the whole film aims for a more emotional atmosphere, which is not at all entertaining, and fails to evoke the spirit or drama of the old, classic war films, and that’s why I’ll give it a 6.8.

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About Author

The Mad Movie Man, AKA Anthony Cullen, writes articles and reviews about movies and the world of cinema. Since January 1st, 2013, he has watched and reviewed a movie every day. This is the blog dedicated to the project: www.madmovieman.com