Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Battle of Britain

As we begin looking at World War 2 we will pause to watch a movie......The Battle of Britain (1969) is a movie set in the year 1940 and is an,

"Historical reenactment of the air war in the early days of World War Two for control of the skies over Britain as the new Luftwaffa and the Royal Air Force determine whether or not an invasion can take place." Written by John Vogel

While dated, this movie is still very entertaining and quite interesting. It also gives us some insight into the desperation of the times and it depicts how many member of the Allies (including Canadians) worked together to defend the skies over Britain from the Nazi Luftwaffa.

Also one of the main characters in the movie is played by Christopher Plummer. He plays the role of a Canadian fighter pilot, Squadron Leader Colin Harvey. Since Plummer is Canadian, he asked for his character's RAF uniform to display the "Canada" on his shoulder flashes.

Check out some trivia facts here:
Trivia about the movie

Read this article for our third seminar of the term:
History in Images


  1. A short review

    I find it very interesting how many of the special effects were done in this film. For example, cooking oil was injected into the engine to simulate the white vapor trails from damaged aircraft engines. Also, more blanks were used in the film than in the real Battle of Britain. Overall, I found the film interesting and some parts extremely entertaining especially when the special effect explosions failed or when a burning London looked more like a lava field than a mass of burning buildings.

  2. I agree with Denis, but the reason for the blanks fired could be due to multiple scenes being shot multiple times which gives a reasonable explanation.

  3. Yeah, Tyler's right - a tremendous amount of synchonization needs to be done perfectly each and every scene otherwise the film would look fake. If a wing gets caught in the film by accident or a plane flys off somewhere, the scene has to be redone. They didn't have computers back then so special effects couldn't eliminate it (remember the 'explosions' that were done later..)

    -Matthew Lau

  4. The movie was extremely well made. All the special effects and action were amazing considering this film was made in the 60s! Engaging plot, established characters, historically accurate, all these aspects made this film wonderful.

    Edward Zhao

    PS At first I thought this was made in the 80s

  5. I agree with Edward that the film is well made, and what is surprising is the level of historical accuracy. Other than a couple of historical bloopers, such as listing Israeli as a nationality for one of the pilots (Israel wasn't created until 1949, which was nine years after the Battle of Britain), everything else relates to the actual event flawlessly.

  6. Considering the film was made in the 60s, I feel that it was very well done. The amount of explosions and fight scenes were of very high quality considering that the producers did not have the type of special effects that we have today. Also, the information was fairly accurate to what actually happened.

  7. It was an ok movie to me..
    The plot wasn't that interesting and during the whole movie I was really confused! Especially who was who, which planes were which and what was going on! Also I really didn't like how they left us hanging with the love story in the movie. I actually wanted to see how she would react to her boyfriend after the burn! I thought the special effects were pretty cool for a movie made in the 60's, and I liked the way they filmed it.

  8. I considered the film, The Battle of Britain, quite well done.Of course, I can't speak on behalf of the accuracy of facts but I can say that it left a dramatic impact on me in terms of not only, how destructive and senseless war is, but moreover the caliber of internal strength actual war veterans must have possessed.It was extremely eye opening to see the strategic victory of Britain's outnumbered air pilots fight against and overcome the aggressive Germans.

    -Dylan Sidoo

  9. great movie, i really enjoyed watching it and i also learned the role of women in the WWII and more importantly the role of pilots and how they easily gave their lives, because at the beginning of the movie the new young pilot who came everyone made fun of him and laughed at him, but all the other experienced pilots died and therefore he became the head pilot which was very interesting for me and I learned how the pilots roles where like back in WWII.