Pearl Harbor

D: Michael Bay
Touchstone (Jerry Bruckheimer & Michael Bay)
US 2001
182 mins


W: Randall Wallace
DP: John Schwartzman
Ed: Chris Lebenzon, Steven Rosenblum, Mark Goldblatt & Roger Barton
Mus: Hans Zimmer 
PD: Nigel Phelps
Cos: Michael Kaplan

Ben Affleck (1st Lt. Rafe McCawley), Josh Hartnett (1st Lt. Danny Walker), Kate Beckinsale (Lt. Evelyn Johnson), Cuba Gooding, Jr. (Petty Officer Dorie Miller), Tom Sizemore (Earl), Jon Voight (Franklin D. Roosevelt), Colm Feore (Adm. Husband E. Kimmel), Mako (Isoroku Yamamoto), Alec Baldwin (Maj. Jimmy Doolittle), Dan Aykroyd (Capt. Thurman)

The trite love story from Titanic (qv) is given a fresh makeover with the location transferred from the decks of the doomed ship to the naval base of Pearl Harbor, Hawaii in the days leading up to the Japanese attack.

Two pilots, friends since childhood, fall for a beautiful nurse at the base and fight with each other shortly before they take to the skies and kick the ass of the Japs.

As a history lesson, this film is the worst kind of bad and as a love story it's even worse. At least there's something positive to say about the film, in the shape of convincing production design, visual effects and some beautifully picturesque photography, but it's unfortunately not enough. The screenplay is as shocking as the performances, which sees Ben Affleck doing his finest example of "smell the fart acting" and Jon Voight portraying Franklin D. Roosevelt as though it's some kind of personal insult to the former president. It's just about what you'd expect from a Jerry Bruckheimer-Michael Bay collaboration.


Pearl Harbor
Pearl Harbor