The Blue Max – Well done movie but a depressing story

The Blue MaxThe Blue Max by John Guillermin on DVD
My rating: 6 out of 10 stars

Based on a novel by Jack D. Hunter, The Blue Max is a World War I aviation drama, told from the German point of view. Low-born infantryman George Peppard becomes a pilot, almost deliberately stepping on the sensibilities of his aristocratic comrades in the process. A national hero, Peppard wins the Blue Max, the highest award that can be bestowed upon an aviator. His fame is exploited by general James Mason, who tolerates Peppard’s affair with Mason’s wife Ursula Andress. The canny Mason knows that, eventually, Peppard will be expendable, and a “heroic” death can be arranged

World War I flight combat movies are fairly rare which poses a bit of a problem for us since my son is all into aviation and his favorite period is World War I. This year my wife stumbled onto this movie while looking for Christmas presents.

I have watched this movie a long time ago but I did not remember much about it except that I did not like the ending. Well I am older now and can appreciate more aspects of a movie than I could then but I have to say that I still find the ending somewhat depressing. Actually, the hole movie is rather depressing I would say.

Having said that, as a movie it is a very well done piece of cinematic art. The story, as depressing as it might be, holds together. The acting is good. The flight scenes are very good even by today’s standards. Actually if you consider that the movie was done almost 50 years ago they are quite fantastic.

It is a shame that the story is so depressing. It is still a must watch movie if you are into war and historical flight movies though.

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