Rated NR

During World War I, the allied powers gathered an all-volunteer group of wide-eyed American men to form the Lafayette Escadrille in France. These fighter pilots ignored the nonexistent safety precautions to go up against the better-equipped Germans in gut-wrenching dogfights hundreds of feet above the ground. It’s an incredible shame that director Tony Bill couldn’t convey this epic historical event with the intensity and exhilaration that the real-life episode did. Instead, the two-dimensional characters, boring acting and repetitive scenes lead to boredom and disinterest. James Franco stars as an orphaned Texas rebel who eludes the law to enlist overseas. Although the few-and-far-between battle scenes evoke energy through the deft mixture of models, CGI and re-creations, the film loses its fuel when it’s not high in the sky.

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