Pearl Harbor (movie)

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Pearl_Harbor_DVD.jpg
Pearl Harbor DVD Cover

Pearl Harbor is the title of a war film released in the summer of 2001 by Touchstone Pictures. It stars Ben Affleck, Alec Baldwin, Josh Hartnett, Kate Beckinsale, and Cuba Gooding Jr.. It was a dramatic re-imagining of the Attack on Pearl Harbor and it was produced by the team of Jerry Bruckheimer and Michael Bay, who had previously been involved with such action-packed blockbusters as Armageddon and The Rock. The final section of the movie relates the Doolittle Raid, the first American attack on Japanese land of WW 2.

It was released Memorial Day weekend in 2001 and was released on DVD to coincide with the 60th anniversary of the attack. Despite its dazzling special effects, the movie was almost universally panned by critics as being self-important and hackneyed, with movie critic Ian Waldron-Mantgani in the UK going so far as to say it was "A cheerfully offensive rape of history." In fact, the movie embraces many of the myths of the Pearl Harbor attack, such as Doris Miller's exaggerated heroism, and Admiral Kimmel and General Short's carelessness (subsequent investigations showed that both commanders were not informed by US intelligence).

The movie cost approximately $140 million to produce, and it earned about $200 million in domestic gross. This was considered to be a disappointment, due to the accounting methods used to determine the net profit made by motion pictures.

Historical Inaccuracies

  • Admiral Kimmel was not on a golf course on the morning of the attack, nor was he notified of the Japanese embassy leaving Washington DC after the attack had begun; rather he had known about this for several days.
  • The battleships in "Battleship Row" were historically tied directly together, not spaced 50 yards apart as they were in the movie
  • Doris Miller's boxing match on the USS West Virginia was actually on a mothballed Iowa-class battleship currently present at Pearl Harbor as a memorial. In an actual war, the main gun barrels would not have been corked as they were in the movie.
  • Some shots of the carrier USS Hornet incorrectly show an angle-decked carrier (a post-WWII invention) instead of the straight-decked carrier (the mainstay of WWII carriers)
  • Affleck and Josh Hartnett's characters are shown taking part in the Doolittle bombing raid over Tokyo, something which would not have been possible for two fighter pilots.

External links

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