Winning Your Wings - U.S. World War II Aviation Training DVD. This DVD contains four aviation training films from WWII.
Film #1 Naval Aviation Cadet (Color, 1942, 18:00) Narrated by Joseph Cotton (Citizen Kane, The Third Man). This color film follows the career of a Navy cadet from enlistment soon after Pearl Harbor through Primary and Advanced Flight training and on into combat. Especially memorable are the many scenes shot at Pensacola Naval Air Station flight school. You'll see all aspects of cadet training, including flight, gunnery, navigation and bombing, along with a generous serving of cadet social life. This film is also notable for extensive, rare color footage of a wide variety of USN training and early war combat aircraft, including Vought OS2U Kingfisher catapult float planes, Boeing N2S Kaydets, North American SNJs, Vultee SNV-1 Valiants, Brewster F2A Buffaloes and SB2A Buccaneers in flight, Consolidated PBY Catalinas and Grumman F4F Wildcats operating off a carrier deck.
Film #2 Winning Your Wings (B&W, 1943,18:00) Narrated by Oscar Winner and decorated bomber pilot, Jimmy Stewart This rousing recruiting film was designed to show the many benefits of joining the Air Corps. The United State's entry into World War II seemed to happen almost overnight. That meant that the Air Force needed thousands qualified air and ground crew yesterday. "Winning Your Wings" is hosted and narrated by Capt Jimmy Stewart. Already an accomplished pilot, Stewart enlisted early and served as a bomber pilot and squadron leader throughout the war. The film shows that joining the Air Corps provides a quick path to noncom and high paying officer status and an advanced training program that would prove beneficial after the War. The film points out that every U.S. Air Force bombardier, navigator and pilot was an officer (a sore point with the RAF). It also emphasizes that lack of a college degree is not a prerequisite for advance rank or pilot training. And last, not but not least, that the girls sure go for those pilot's wings! "Winning Your Wings" is also notable for interior and exterior footage of rare prewar vintage B-17s used to film in-flight sequences. "If you're not ready to sign up after hearing the enthusiastic, stirring pitch from Jimmy Stewart, well brother, you're just a Palooka from Palookaville!" Zeno
Film #3 Cadet Classification (B&W, 1943, 18:00) Narrated by Lt. Ronald Reagan. Most young men who joined the Air Corps, wanted to be a pilot, but it was up to the the training schools to determine where they made the best fit, "Bombardier, Navigator or Pilot." Candidates went through an extensive screening process, including physical fitness, high altitude survival, mental aptitude under stress (graded by an early computer), physical reaction time, ordination and agility, and more. One of the pleasures of this film is seeing the wide variety analog of "high tech" equipment (circa 1943) used to test the recruits. One of the purposes of the film is to show that classifications are reached through scientific methodology rather than subjective opinion that gives a a war winning result. It's better for the Air Corps to have a great Bombardier or Navigator than a mediocre Pilot.
Film #4 Wings Up (Originally released as "Sustineo Alas," B&W, 1943, 18:00 ) Narrated by Academy Award Winner Capt. Clark Gable. This film was developed by the Army Air Corps to show men what to expect when they entered Officer's Candidate School in Miami, Fla. There was a lot more to becoming an officer than learning how to fly. You'll see the physical and mental testing and screening process that winnowed a thousand prospective candidates down to a couple of dozen officer candidates. who include (in this class) Olympic athletes, a circus performer, symphony conductor, a Mayor, refugees from fascism, baseball & football players, veteran enlisted men, and actors Gilbert Roland and Robert Preston.This diverse group is sent through 12 weeks of tough physical training, and classroom training in 33 subjects including camouflage, strategy, leadership, and administration. A year of college & West Point all rolled into one!
The DVD is in NTSC format and region-free. The runtime is about 72 minutes. It is packaged in a plain clear plastic C-Shell DVD case without paper graphics.