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Red Tails Blu-ray Review

“Red Tails” is the most moving film of 2012 thus far.

“Red Tails” tells the inspiring true story of the courageous Tuskegee Airmen’s missions and fighting in WWII. The film follows the 332nd Fighter Group comprised of Marty “Easy” Julian, Joe “Lightning” Little, Ray “Junior Gannon (AKA Ray Gun), Samuel “Joker” George, Andrew “Smoky” Salem, and Leon “Neon” Edwards and their superior officers Colonel Bullard and Major Stance.

While “Red Tails” was a box office hit, the film was slammed by many critics. They claimed the dialogue was corny and that the movie had several sappy moments. Personally, I feel these critics are missing the point. ‘Tails’ is meant to resemble a 40’s era war film. It’s an old fashioned Hollywood movie made in modern day. Above all else though, this is meant to be an educational, respectful, important, emotional, and entertaining tribute to the Tuskegee Airmen and their groundbreaking achievements. To me, it succeeds in being all of those things and more.

One of the things that really works about this film is the attention to character. For many war films, we get a lot of underdeveloped one note characters, but that’s not the case here. John Ridley an Aaron McGruder’s script takes the time to get to know this group of pilots and, as a result, they become fully developed characters that we deeply care about.

As you’ve no doubt heard, ‘Tails’ is receiving high praise (even by the film’s detractors) for the stunning aerial battles. I’m here to tell you that they do indeed live up to the hype. You really feel as if you are in the cockpit right along with the 332nd fighters group. Top notch CGI and sound f/x work here.

Summary: Considering George Lucas developed this film for over 22 years, it was clearly a passion project for him and it shows in the final product. “Red Tails” is a fine film that is not getting the credit it deserves. Highly recommended.

Note: Keep your eyes and ears open to some “Star Wars” references.


“Red Tails,” which is presented in 2.40:1 1080p, honestly has one of the best transfers I have seen on Blu-ray. The clarity, colors, aerial battles are positively breathtaking. A lot of the time, visual F/X look weaker on Blu-ray as the clarity highlights the CGI flaws, but with ‘Tails,’ the film looks so much better than the theatrical print I saw.

The 5.1 DTS-HD audio track is also worthy of praise. From the dialogue to the aerial battles, this is just a great track. When it comes to Lucasfilm, you expect the best sound quality and you definitely always get it.

* DVD Copy.
* “Double Victory: The Tuskegee Airmen At War”- Cuba Gooding Jr. narrates this fantastic in-depth 60 minute documentary about the history of the Tuskegee Airmen.
* “George Lucas: Executive Producer”- Lucas talks about how the film came about, the dogfights, the authenticity, the themes, etc.
* “Anthony Hemingway: Director”- Hemingway talks about how he became attached to the project, meeting the surviving Tuskegee Airmen, putting the cast through boot camp, and the film itself.
* “Terence Blanchard: Composer”- Blanchard talks about creating the film score.
* “The Cast Of Red Tails”- A featurette about the impressive cast.
* “Movie Magic”- A featurette about the stunning CGI whether it be on land of in the air.

May 24, 2012 - Posted by | Blu-Ray review | , ,


  1. “Box office hit”? It didn’t even surpass $50m domestically in total, let alone opening weekend.

    Comment by Kyle | May 29, 2012 | Reply

    • A. Red Tails exceeded all expectations going up against Underworld: Awakening. Not bad for a movie that the studios passed on because they thought they could never market it. B. Domestic is not the big picture these days. Worldwide gross is.

      Comment by nicklyons1 | May 29, 2012 | Reply

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