Pearl Harbor (2001)

A story of two best friends, Rafe (Ben Affleck) and Danny (Josh Hartnett), who join the airforce as fighter pilots and fall for the same girl, against a backdrop of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941 that caused America to enter the war.

Our Rating: 6/10 - got a lot of haters, but it's OK
Watchability: 7/10 - although it takes about an hour to get going
Contributed By: Jordan Taylor
Tagline: It takes a moment to change history. It takes love to change lives.

Release Date: 2001-05-25
IMDb icon 6.1/10
  • Country: USA
  • Language: English | Japanese | French
  • Runtime: 33
  • Budget: $140,000,000
  • Revenue: $198,542,554
  • Production: Touchstone Pictures

So, how does the movie end??

Rafe comes to terms with Danny stealing his girl when he hears from Evelyn that she is pregnant with Danny's baby.  Commended for their defence of Pearl Harbor where they shot down enemy fighters, they are called up for a secret mission by Lt Colonel Doolittle (a semi-young looking Baldwin - he's aged a lot in the last 10 years) - the type where ""medals are posted to your relatives"" as the soldiers are unlikely to return alive.
  The plan is to carry out an attack on Tokyo, but they must launch the heavy bombers off aircraft carriers designed for faster and lighter planes.  Gradually taking enough out of the planes to get them airbourne in time, they are awoken by sirens as the carriers have been discovered by the Japanese.  Still a long distance from their targets, the decision is made to launch anyway and the bombers complete their run.

With fuel quickly burning up, Rafe's team crash land in China and are soon under fire from a Japanese patrol.  Danny flies over a few minutes later and takes out some bad guys before crashing badly.  Rafe runs to his friend, but they are captured by another Japanese patrol.  Choosing to fight back, Danny is shot several times before the rest of the guys kill their enemy with the help of a grenade.  As Danny is dying, Rafe tells his best friend that he is to be a father.  Danny dies suddenly from this excitement as the Chinese show up.

Back in the US, Rafe is awarded a silver cross for his bravery - with Doolittle in the background who obviously must have survived too.  Cuba Gooding Jnr is given a mention as that's a very worthy story in itself which the director just forgot about and is wasted in this movie.

Evelyn doesn't seem too upset and at least her mind is made up now as she starts a happy, complicated family with her first love Rafe, who she thought was dead, and her son - called Danny - from the father who was the best friend of her first love. 

Ben Affleck
Ben Affleck
Capt. Rafe McCawley
Josh Hartnett
Josh Hartnett
Capt. Danny Walker
Kate Beckinsale
Kate Beckinsa...
Nurse Lt. Evelyn Johnson
William Lee Scott
William Lee S...
Lt. Billy Thompson
Ewen Bremner
Ewen Bremner
Lt. Red Winkle
Alec Baldwin
Alec Baldwin
Lt. Col. James Doolittle
Jaime King
Jaime King
Nurse Betty Bayer
Catherine Kellner
Catherine Kel...
Nurse Barbara
Jennifer Garner
Jennifer Garn...
Nurse Sandra
Jon Voight
Jon Voight
President Franklin Delano Roosevelt
Cuba Gooding Jr.
Cuba Gooding...
Petty Officer Doris Miller
Michael Shannon
Michael Shann...
Lt. Gooz Wood
Matthew Davis
Matthew Davis
Adm. Isoroku Yamamoto
Member Comments:

JT - "Was on TV again (- is this movie ever off TV?) and actually the action scenes are pretty good, so probably should have given it a 7 ... although it does have Ben Affleck in, so you have to even it out.

Just kidding Affleck fans! (Even though it's true)"

Laurie - "I have thoroughly enjoyed this movie. Yes, there's romance in it, but the message of the effects the attack at Pearl Harbor on American are clear. Anyone not moved by this film needs help. This was a date in history that forever changed America in many ways. Women were called upon to fill in for the men who were fighting, building aircrafts and other essentials needed to avenge Pearl Harbor. I love this movie!"

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