Even though the "Code Talkers" were Navajo and Marines and in the South Pacific and this film was made in 1952 and even though the Navajo Code Talkers' secrecy was not declassified until 1968, someone knew about it and put a different spin on the facts. I was surprised when it was disclosed only a few years ago about the real code talkers. The Thunderbirds was a nickname for the 45th Infantry Division of Oklahoma. They fought in the European Theatre in World War II. As far as I remember (50 years ago) from the movie there were no Navajos from Oklahoma. Still a good movie for the old Saturday afternoon matinees where we had 5 cartoons, a newsreel and a double feature.
This is a must see for all. Especially if you work for a surly conniving person. Cagney draws out the best of the worst in people with his portrayal of an ambitious and insecure captain of a ship. Fonda, Powell, Lemmon, Cagney, and Bond are excellent. Many others of later fame appear in the movie. This is a movie that can be seen over and over and the worst word in the entire movie is "crud." Hollywood will never top this one.
This is a great movie. It casts light on the good and bad side of all of us and how we might react under stress and in a group. Suspicion focuses on the main character but after awhile you begin to suspect almost the entire cast. Great acting and a great cast with humor thrown in.
Have the video and watch it about every other month. Great scene with "Frenchy" cutting bread and cheese and chasing with wine. First saw this movie about 1950 and have always enjoyed the acting. Not "hoaky" like some of the other movies of that period. Well worth watching. All of the characters have some depth. Too bad they had to use a P-51C as a German Fighter aircraft. That was the only point that could have used some work, but in 1943 it was hard to "get" a BF-109 unless you were in a P-51.