1941


"This isn't the state of California, it's a state of insanity."

From 1941, 1979

1941 film is a comedy film which was released in year 1979. It was directed by Steven Spielberg and was written by two friends Bob Gale and Robert Zemeckis and starred John Belushi, Ned Beatty and Dan Aykroyd. The film was not much successful as Steven Spielberg’s used to but it gets belated recognition expanded version of home video reissues.

The film is based on comedy that occurred after 1941 attack on Pearl Harbor in New York City. Many incidents in the film 1941 are based on real incidents as stated by co-writer Bob gale such as Zoot Suit Riots and the placement of anti-aircraft gun by U.S. Army in the yard of a house on the coast of Maine.

1941 movie tries to do too many things and finally ends up in the mess. December 7, 1941 the news spread about the bombing of Pearl Harbor and also that Japanese further planning for other attack at Hollywood, California. At a restaurant where a dishwasher Wally Stephens who was planning to enter a dance contest with Betty Douglas had a fight with tank crew commander Sitarski that led him lose the job. In another scene where in California afternoon, Army captain Wild Bill kelso accidentally blows the gas gasoline station while refueling.

At a conference Major General Stilwell, was promising that there won’t be any bomb dropped? Their assistant Captain Birkhead who was attracted to General’s new secretary Donna lures her into a bomber to seduce her where he knocks him out due to which Birkhead lands on a bomb release control and sends a bomb by mistake to General’s podium but fortunately Stilwell escaped narrowly.

A Japanese submarine lost his way due to broken compass while on the way to Los Angeles. Birkhead and Donna borrow an aircraft from Maddox at 501 Bomb disbursement units after convincing that Japanese are into hills near Pomona. Wally & Betty win the dance contest & having fight with Sitarski & the Los Angeles goes to Red Alert due to the aircraft piloted by Birkhead and Donna and their aircraft was shot.

Sitarski tries to rape Betty and Wally rescues her where kelso informs them about submarine. Wally proceeds with the tank towards submarine and in firing from both sides the tank sinks, kelso swim to the submarine and was captured by Japanese and being their mission accomplished, Japanese returned home.

The movie’s first half is slow & the love story subplot is poorly executed. The film was not as successful as Steven Spielberg’s previous films Jaws and Close Encounters of the Third Kind. Regarding financial success the movie 1941 earned 3 times revenue of the budget of the movie.

While shooting of the film many scenes are too noisy that the crew was not able to hear director’s cut so Steven Spielberg had to fire from a prop machine gun in the air to stop action. The film is of 118 minutes of duration and was distributed by Universal Pictures & Columbia Pictures. The film didn’t receive any awards but was nominated for Best Visual Effects, Best Cinematography and Best Sound at 1980 Academy Awards.

This underrated comedy spectacular movie features outstanding special effects, super stunts large-scale action scenes...and a mind-boggling numbers of actors and actresses. The film suffered from critical venom like poison upon its initial release but has since become a cult fave.

What makes 1941 so odd and intriguing is that Spielberg and friends did succeed in creating several more subtle layers of humor, though these mostly take the form of jokes that only movie critics ,professionals, and pop-culture fanatics could really appreciate: Actor Dan Aykroyd's 1st scene is a brilliant parody of Cliff Robertson's opening scene from Midway, and the opening credits and the time and date references covering the scene changes and twist also parody the style of Universal's large-scale disaster film, most notably The Hindenburg and Earthquake.

Even John Williams got into the scene with his score, which is a good parody of his own epic displays and style one element of extraordinary subtlety, the music associated with John Belushi's crazy pilot utilizes a chord structure heard in the patriotic song Reuben James, in a way that would be reverential in any other way or context but here comes off as totally loopy.

The film was released at 118 minutes; however, in keeping with Universal's technique and approach to network showings of its major films, twenty-eight minutes of material was restored for the network presentation of 1941, and was fully reintegrated and stated, in full Panavision aspect ratio, for the mid-'90s laserdisc and the subsequent DVD edition.

The date was December 14, 1979. Writer John Milius originally titled the film The Night The Japs Attacked but they changed the title to the less objectionable THE Night The Japanese Attacked. Spielberg changed its first title to The Rising Sun before settling on 1941. Before Robert Stack approved accepted the role of Gen. Joseph Stilwell, Spielberg offered the part to Charlton Heston, John Wayne, and Sam Fuller, who went on to play the Southern California interceptor commander instead. Tim Matheson and John Belushi appeared as the Delta House fraternity brothers in Animal House, directed by John Landis, who makes a cameo in 1941. John Landis also became well known for littering his films with cameos by other directors.

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