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Pearl Harbor in the cinema: four films about the Japanese attack of 1941 that you cannot miss

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(CNN Spanish) – “Tora! Tora! Tora!” Shouts the Japanese commander Mitsuo Fuchida into the radio communicator, aboard his noisy bomber. His open eyes sparkle with excitement: he has just informed the fleet that the first wave of 180 aircraft arrived at Pearl Harbor undetected, and that they will soon attack the main US naval base in the Pacific.

Although this occurred in part on December 7, 1941, the scene corresponds to the film “Tora! Tora! Tora!”, A major production made by Japan and the United States and released in 1970.

But it is not the only film interpretation of the 1941 Japanese attack on the United States Pacific Fleet, which led the country to enter World War II.

American actors Burt Lancaster and Montgomery Clift and Austrian-born director Fred Zinnemann talk between scenes on the set of the film “From Here to Eternity.” (Credit: Hulton Archive / Getty Images)

Here are four hugely successful Japanese and American blockbusters dealing with this 80-year-old event.

“From here to eternity” (1953, United States)

Based on the novel written by James Jones, who fought in the US Army during World War II, “From Here to Eternity” is a romantic drama that tells the story of a group of soldiers at the Pearl Harbor base in the moments leading up to the attack.

I know premiere in 1953 and featured some of the most famous actors of the time: Montomgery Clift, Donnad Reed, Burt Lancaster, Deborah Kerr, and Frank Sinatra, among others.

The film has become a cinema classic, popular with fans and critics. According to the ratings site Rotten Tomatoes, It has a 90% approval rating in specialized reviews and 84% in public ratings.

“Storm Over the Pacific” (1960, Japan)

This Japanese production released in color in 1960 focuses on the story of Lieutenant Koji Kitami, a bomber in the Imperial Navy of Japan who participated in the attack on Pearl Harbor and the subsequent Battle of Midway, and is the first film to show the Japanese perspective. .

It was directed by Shue Matsubayashi, and its main actors include Yosuke Natsuki, Toshiro Mifune and Koji Tsuruta.

“Storm Over the Pacific” was released in the United States in 1961 – dubbed into English and shortened – and there it was called “I Bombed Pearl Harbor”.

“Tora! Tora! Tora!” (1970, United States / Japan)

Classic of war cinema, “Tora! Tora! Tora!” (the title refers to the Japanese word for “Surprise attack”, and it was about the code that the pilots had to send after being successful) was a huge production between the United States and Japan that tried to show the two perspectives of the attack in an epic tone: the number of characters and real-life scenes portrayed and the attention in detail they resemble the film to a documentary.

For that counted with two great teams: Richard Fleischer directed the scenes showing the Americans, with a cast led by Jason Robards and Joseph Cotten; while Kinji Fukasaku and Toshio Masuda directed the Japanese sequences, with actors such as Takahiro Tamura and Tatsuya Mihashi.

The film was a success with the public and is still highly valued by audiences: it has an 81% evaluation in Rotten tomatoes. But critics have lamented the documentary tone and its slowness, and it reaches 55% on the same platform among specialists.

But Fuchida’s voice (played by Takahiro tamura) throwing his “Tora! Tora! Tora!” it has already become iconic among movie lovers.

“Pearl Harbor” (2001, United States)

Beaten by the review -and the historians-, this 2001 romantic drama from director Michael Bay nevertheless had a great fortune at the box office: it was the sixth movie most successful of that year, with Profits for nearly $ 450 million, according to the Internet Movie Database.

Ben Affleck, Josh Hartnett, Kate Beckinsale, Alec Baldwin and Jon Voight are just some of the stars of that time summoned to try another representation of the Japanese attack based on a heavily criticized love triangle between its protagonists, a Pearl Harbor perhaps more in the tone of a farce than a tragedy.

Just a 24% of reviews of the specialized critics have been positive, according to Rotten Tomatoes, and the audiences, who enjoyed the spectacular fighting scenes, have valued it with a 66% approval.

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