Action / Drama / Romance / Thriller / War
Action / Drama / Romance / Thriller / War
Air Force Colonel Shannon is assigned to escort defecting Soviet pilot Anna. He falls in love with her, but she is scheming to lure him back to the USSR. But Shannon has a scheme of his own.
Uploaded By: FREEMAN
Downloaded 18,887 times
June 15, 2018 at 05:23 PM
as Lt. Anna Marladovna Shannon / Olga Orlief
Up Up in the Air in My Beautiful MIG
Howard Hughes original intension was to do another Hell's Angels for the Cold War Era. Remember that film was equally famous for the aviation shots as for the debut of Jean Harlow as sex symbol.
Well if sex and flying worked before, why not again. Hughes filmed some really great aviation footage and then worked to build a story around it, one with some sex. So he reworked the plot of Ninotchka and adapted it to the wild blue yonder.
The reason originally for the delay in release was that we were making great strides in aviation post World War II. So he re-shot and re-shot the aviation sequences and then eventually lost interest. Jet Pilot was released seven years after it was originally filmed and by then the planes really looked out of date. Our's and the Soviet's. One of the players, Richard Rober, in fact was killed in an automobile crash in 1952.
The only thing you can say about Jet Pilot is that the Russians were far in advance of us on feminist issues. Why then would you have the shapely Janet Leigh filling out a flight suit after allegedly going off course and landing in the USA?
Air Force Colonel John Wayne interrogates Janet about the latest in Soviet technology, but then he gets other things on his mind. After a while he's got the hots for her so bad, he marries her and they go back to the USSR to see what he can find out about their aircraft.
Does it sound pretty silly to you? Even for a propaganda film I doubt this one affirmed anyone's Americanism. Remember this was released on top of The Conqueror and between them they put and end to Wayne's seven year reign as number one at the box office.
By the way at the time this was being filmed, Howard Hughes was panting after Janet Leigh the same way he'd earlier panted after Ava Gardner. He got MGM to send her to RKO for three films, this, A Holiday Affair and the musical Two Tickets to Broadway. Poor Janet.
And poor everyone else connected with Jet Pilot.
so dumb it's great!
Unlike John Wayne's more famous movie turkey, The Conquerer, this film is so bad that it is lots of fun to watch. It is incredibly poorly written (even for an RKO picture) and makes his earlier Republic Films look like masterpieces by comparison (and a few actually were). And, combined with the terrible dialog and dopey plot is the absolute worst performance of Janet Leigh's life! She plays a Russian Airforce pilot with less conviction than perhaps any actress could have approached the role. Not once does she even give the least hint of a Russian accent, though through the use of very thick sweaters she DOES appear to be the poster girl for Playboy Magazine. This nymphet role is combined with stoic "Russian" dialog that sound like it's right out of a grade school play. It's unintentionally hilarious.
As for Wayne, he pretty much plays himself. A REALLY, REALLY horny self, that is! FYI--Apparently the Russians flew Lockheed Shooting Stars (F-80s). You see, when you stick a red star on it, it becomes the spitting image of a MIG-15. Well, that is if you squint REALLY hard and maybe get REALLY drunk first and hit yourself on the head with a frying pan, and,...
Read more IMDb reviews
Jet Pilot Surprise
At the ripe old age of 50, I was amazed to see JET PILOT today for the very first time. Not many Wayne films have escaped me, but this one had. As I was watching the film, it occurred to me that ol Duke must have enjoyed being a fighter pilot (as he should) because he played a pilot in at least 6 films I could think of off the top of my head. Janet Leigh was not overly convincing as a Soviet, but WOW is she gorgeous... WHO CARES. Still, if she had a convincing Russian accent and some leather this would have been the Duke's best effort! Great film of some wonderful machines, and such a treat to see them as well. I became a fighter pilot because of the F-86 though I was too old to fly one... this film features them constantly. Chuck Yeager stunted for the film and broke a tail in a Sabre pressing the envelope. Overall, just a nice film, that was totally unlike any Wayne film I had ever seen. Normally, you know exactly how the plot will go, and that Good, Truth, and the American Way will prevail... but this one... actually makes you wonder if that is going to be the case?!?! Maybe not for the Duke, you know he has a trick up his sleeve, but Janet Leigh?? She is a wild card and you never know till the end who will win out. This movie was akin to finding a $20 bill in your pocket from last year... it has been there a long time, and just a nice treat to come across it.