Published on January 25th, 2012 | by Alyssa Narvell1
“Red Tails” Does Not Soar to Success
By: Gianina Thompson
“Red Tails” made its debut in theaters nationwide Friday, Jan. 20. George Lucas, the man behind the “Indiana Jones” and “Star Wars” franchise, served as the executive producer for “Red Tails” along with director Antony Hemmingway, director of CSI: NY.
Starring actors included Cuba Gooding, Jr., who plays Major Emmanuel Stance, Terrence Howard, who plays Colonel A.J. Bullard, Daniela Ruah, who plays Sofia,and music sensation Ne-Yo as Smoky.
This list of hot shot names grabs the audience’s attention Unfortunately, this movie did not create the soaring praise Lucas hoped for. The fact-based storyline about a group of African American serviceman during World War II was clouded by depthless, one dimensional characters, high degrees of corny dialogue, and layers of predictable clichés.
There is no surprise that racism plays a big part within the Tuskgee Airmen trials; however, the presentation of racism is executed generically and follows the same clichés and scenarios as any other movie that is featured within this time period.
The movie isn’t bad. Audiences can still appreciate the effort made in trying to recreate the story of the Tuskegee Airmen. The narrative is easily digestible. It just lacks creativity within its delivery. Scenes open themselves without proper introduction and many times the audience is left to put two-and-two together to get on track with the current scene.
An overview of the movie’s significance presents itself when Colonel Bullard’s airmen are flying secondhand planes that are given “busy-work” duties that keep them far from the action of the war. The soldiers realize this and want to contribute in the fight. Bullard’s superiors’ reason for not giving his men “real” missions are based on the racial assumption present during that historical period, which is that “colored” soldiers are not good enough to be in the frontline of battle.
Luck of the draw gives the airmen the chance to showcase not only their potential but their great promise for excellence and victories. Being only days away from Black History month, people of all races can appreciate this movie and digest the inspirational story of how the Tuskegee Airmen eventually won the respect they deserved.
Although the movie did not soar within its narrative, its aerial combat scenes are breathtaking to say the least. The digital computer effects create the illusion for the audience that they are the actual airmen. The audience can appreciate the fast-paced swooping and thrilling maneuvering and sparks and explosive booms through the skies because of its imitation of an action-packed video game.
The movie has noble intentions, but a flawed execution; however, it delivers the message to people that when given the chance to prove their worth they must not only prove it to others, but for themselves as well.
“Red Tails” soars within its action scenes, but crashes in the flames of mediocrity within its narrative. Fortunately, any message is better than no message at all and “Red Tails” does establish the moral message of the Tuskegee Airmen.