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Victory Films

“The Battle of Britain"




S u m m a r y

Title: The Battle of Britain
Media: DVD
Price: USD$29.00 available online from Wade Meyers Studios
Review Type: FirstLook
Advantages: Great wartime footage, terrific inspiration for modellers.
Recommendation: Highly Recommended


Reviewed by Floyd S. Werner Jr.

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The Battle of Britain holds a special place in history.  This DVD highlights the events in a documentary format.  Dramatic music is used to great advantage.  The DVD goes from the Fall of France to the end of the night Blitz.  You are treated to tracked vehicles but virtually no tanks on the beach.   



There is a lot of reference material included in the video.  Stukas diving over Dover straight down.  I am still impressed when I see this.  There is some wonderful gun sight footage of Ju-88s and He-111s being shot down.  It isn’t all one sided and there is a nice sequence of a Walrus rescue.  There are lots of shots of Do-17s, a Fulmar, and early 109s.  Actually this portion of the DVD is like an advertisement for Classic Airframes.  It certainly is inspirational.  There are plenty of Spitfires being shot down too.  A random sequence is inserted that shows P-40s and Buffalos flying and firing.  OK it is a propaganda film.  I noticed that the numbers of losses were exaggerated.  It is no wonder that the American press didn’t believe the numbers.  The next sequence shows Wellingtons and night fighting 109s in action. 



The next part of the video is produced by Warner Brothers and is called “Target for Tonight”.  “Target for Tonight” dissects a British Bomber operation from beginning to end.  It opens with an Anson dropping off film from a recon flight by parachute.  Don’t know why they couldn’t land but hey it is Warner Brothers.  “You know how it is with these A cards”.  Immediately you notice the differences from an American briefing.  First thing is there is no Initial Point (IP) for the bomb run just a suggested route in.  There is also no altitude this is left up to the plane captain.  Basically just do whatever you want and drop the bombs on the target.  F for Freddie is the hero of the sequence.  You are treated to some great shots perfect for the Trumpeter kit.  There are also some great interior shots showing off the geodex siding.  There is a unique way of starting a Wellington.  Something is stuffed into the exhausts until it is started.  It looks like a rag or some sort of cloth.  You also get some excellent shots of the weathering and painted out roundels on some airplanes.   



The takeoff is definitely different than an American one where everyone is lined up and goes as soon as the other is off.  The British allow a lot of separation between aircraft.  F for Freddie is shown in some beautiful in flight shots against the clouds but you notice that the aircraft is all by itself.  Ack Ack incoming is beautifully eerie.  It is interesting to see the control exchange between pilots by the pilot getting out of his seat and then the other guy gets in it.  What were they thinking?  Also there is no oxygen in use.  After using all the powers that the British flyers can muster they obliterate a model train terminal.  Now to get home with some damage and an injured crew member.  How could it get worse?  Fog.  Not an issue for the British obviously they light an interesting fire landing system and F for Freddie is home.  It all seems so easy.  No losses and the target destroyed; did the night fighter force exist?  Of course this is a documentary made by a Hollywood film company and this couldn’t be father from the truth. 

There is a small little piece on Dover, hellfire corner by Eduard R. Murrow.  The sequence shows some nice low level gunnery. 



This DVD is typical of the quality historical video I’ve come to expect from Victory Films.  They present a unique war time view of the conflict. 

Highly Recommended. 

Thanks to Wade Meyers and Victory Films for the review copy.

Review Copyright © 2007 by Floyd S. Werner Jr.
This Page Created on 23 August, 2007
Last updated 24 December, 2007

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