The story of the Tuskegee Airmen is a proud one in our nation’s history, and it’s certainly a turning point for African Americans. But by and large, Red Tails misses why it’s important. When the experiment at Tuskegee was launched, it was just that: an experiment to see if black pilots could be as skilled as whites. However, the brave young men trained there became pivotal contributors to the fight in World War II, and that’s what takes center stage here more than the racial or societal circumstances. Perhaps executive producer George Lucas isn’t interested in exploring tension within his own country during WWII, but that really is the clarion call to make this film in the first place; we’ve certainly seen enough war movies that are interchangeable. There are some great dogfights, as you’d expect from Lucas, but historically and emotionally, Red Tails is pretty empty.
Director: Anthony Hemingway
Producer: Rick McCallum, Charles Floyd Johnson and George Lucas
Cast: Cuba Gooding Jr., Terrence Howard, Nate Parker, David Oyelowo, Ne-Yo, Elijah Kelley, Bryan Cranston, Tristan Wilds, Kevin Phillips, Lee Tergesen, Andre Royo, Marcus Paulk, Leslie Odom Jr., Michael B. Jordan and Daniela Ruah