HELL'S ANGELS, 1930
Cast: Ben Lyon, Jean Harlow, James Hall, John Darrow, Lucien Prival, Frank Clarke
Two brothers attending Oxford enlist with the RAF when World War I breaks out. Roy and Monte Rutledge have very different personalities. Monte is a freewheeling womanizer, even with his brother's girlfriend Helen. He also proves to have a yellow streak when it comes to his Night Patrol duties. Roy is made of strong moral fiber and attempts to keep his brother in line. Both volunteer for an extremely risky two man bombing mission for different reasons. Monte wants to lose his cowardly reputation and Roy seeks to protect his brother. Their assignment to knock out a strategic German munitions facility is a booming success, but with a squadron of fighters bearing down on them afterwards, escape seems unlikely.
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Airplanes. Scientists, inventors, and artists theorized and envisioned the possibility of flight for centuries. On December 17, 1903, the Wright Brothers made that dream a reality. Though airplanes have made dramatic changes and advances in the following decades, one thing remains the same. Airplanes remain a constant source of entertainment and adventure in the movies. Millionaire Howard Hughes was one of the first directors to tap into this source in his 1930 film Hellís Angels.
James Hall and Ben Lyon star as Roy and Monte Rutlage, two brothers attending Oxford in England during the days before World War I. When the war breaks out, the brothers enlist in the Royal Flying Corps. During the war, the brothers must endure harrowing flights and challenge their morals and loyalty. Plus, the brothers must compete for the heart of Helen (Jean Harlow). Unsure of which to chose, she sways back and forth, teasing and torturing the guys. Things go down hill from there, especially when the brothers are shot down and captured by German troops.
It wasnít soon after airplanes were used in combat, that Hollywood took the opportunity to jump all over the possibilities. In fact, Hughes had an ongoing battle with fellow director and good friend Howard Hawks to make the first big airplane war film. Hawks was working on The Dawn Patrol and Hughes was working on a secretive expensive project called Hellís Angels. Hughes, who had no directing experience but lots and lots of money to spare, used Hellís Angels to show how big films could go. Both directorsí efforts were a race to the finish.
However, while Hughes was battling it out with Hawks, cinema took a drastic turn with the advent of sound. Hughes, who had been filming Hellís Angels as a silent film, decided to re-shoot everything he had filmed and make into a sound film. Though the