Two Navy fighter pilots find themselves in the midst of a forbidden relationship throwing their lives and careers into disarray.Two Navy fighter pilots find themselves in the midst of a forbidden relationship throwing their lives and careers into disarray.Two Navy fighter pilots find themselves in the midst of a forbidden relationship throwing their lives and careers into disarray.
It has always seemed to me that a surprising number of the negative reviews that I read at IMDb fall into two categories. The first is that the movie was not a movie that the reviewer wanted to see, and the second that the movie wasn't made in the manner that the reviewer would have made it. Keeping that in mind I would caution anyone thinking of seeing this that it is NOT a feel good story of 'coming out' in the military. In fact I don't think that I would even characterize it as a gay movie. I would say that it is first and foremost about the military itself and more particularly about the anti-gay witch hunts that were commonplace in the military for decades. It clearly is made from the point of view that these witch hunts had a negative impact on everyone involved, including the military itself. Consequently, there are going to be people who dislike this movie because they despise the idea of gays in the military. In other words, this is not a movie they wanted to see..... ever..... and they don't want you to see it either.
This is a movie about a bunch of guys having a jolly old time flying, and incidentally crashing, very expensive fighter planes during a time of supposed 'peace'. It wouldn't appear that any of them have any doubts about the nature of their sexual orientation. They are the kind of straight dudes that can cavort around naked, even get raunchy and physical with each other without seeing it as really sexual at all. The investigation that becomes central to the film actually comes about because of how they are doing their job; their negligence and dishonesty. If there is one thing that unites them it is the necessity of covering up their screw-ups, and this attitude goes all the way up to the highest command level. To the reviewer who complained that more than 30 minutes at the beginning of the film were devoted to "exposition and character development" I would suggest that, no, this was the actual film. It just wasn't the film you wanted to see. (By the way, I also might mention to the reviewer who complained "It was so hard to follow. Couldn't tell if a day went by, a month, a year or many years" that, in the print I saw at least, the years and locations of each segment were clearly written on the screen. Perhaps you just were too lazy to read them. That could also be why you mistakenly thought it "represented the 1950's")
I have to say that I personally did not particularly enjoy the 'top gun' style antics of these guys. I have a low opinion of the movie "Top Gun" because it helped people get over sour memories of the Vietnam debacle, not a bad thing in itself, but unfortunately I believe it made it easier for us to be led us into the First Gulf War, which many people in this country found to be highly enjoyable and uplifting, but then, again, into the Second one which was 'fun' to watch on TV at first but then not nearly as much fun as it dragged on and on...... like Vietnam. On the plus side, it didn't seem to me that any of the main characters here were portrayed as heroes, except perhaps the one who walks away. Most are easy on the eyes, and I have to hand it to them, they were able to get stinking drunk in their studly white uniforms without spilling a drop.
I think it is fair to point out that "Burning Blue" has what might be considered to be problems with continuity and clarity but I recently saw "Breathless", a movie often found in critic's top ten all time lists, and it was considerably more incoherent and less clear than this film. "Breathless" jumps all over the place. But as one highly respected critic has said, that represents: "the meaninglessness of the time interval between moral decisions." Huh??? If a defining moment here in a crucial scene slips by us unnoticed could it be because the individuals involved initially would prefer to pretend it never happened? And then, for reasons both personal and legal, that turns out to be a rather difficult to accomplish.
- Jun 13, 2014