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The Wild Blue Yonder (1951)

Approved | | Drama, War | 5 December 1951 (USA)
Training Boeing B-29 Superfortress Crew.


Allan Dwan


Andrew Geer (story), Charles Grayson (story) | 1 more credit »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Wendell Corey ... Capt. Harold Calvert
Vera Ralston ... Lt. Helen Landers
Forrest Tucker ... Maj. Tom West
Phil Harris ... Sgt. Hank Stack
Walter Brennan ... Maj. Gen. Wolfe
William Ching ... Lt. Ted Cranshaw
Ruth Donnelly ... Maj. Ida Winton
Harry Carey Jr. ... Sgt. Shaker Schuker
Penny Edwards ... Connie Hudson
Wally Cassell ... Sgt. Pulaski
James Brown ... Sgt. Pop Davis
Richard Erdman ... Cpl. Frenchy
Phillip Pine ... Sgt. Tony
Martin Kilburn Martin Kilburn ... Peanuts
Hal Baylor ... Sgt. Eric Nelson


In 1943, Capt. Harold Calvert is sent to Kansas to learn to fly the newest American bomber, the B-29 Superfortress. One of the instructors is Major Tom West, a cousin of the captain. Being pressurized, the B-29 can fly higher, faster and farther than any other bomber. The top brass is closely monitoring the test flights in order to evaluate the new bomber and make recommendations. When the training and testing phase is over, the new bombers and their crews are sent to China to prepare for bombing missions against Japan. After the Americans conquer Iwo Jima and Guam, the B-29s are transferred to Guam to prepare for mass air raids against the Japanese mainland. Harold Calvert and Tom West fall for the same pretty army nurse, Lt. Helen Landers. For the next mass air raid against Tokyo, both Calvert and West are scheduled to fly together on the same bomber. But Tokyo's air defenses are formidable and many American bombers are downed by Japanese flak and Zero fighters. The bomber flown by ... Written by nufs68

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis




Drama | War


Approved | See all certifications »






Release Date:

5 December 1951 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Höllenreiter der Nacht See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Republic Pictures (I) See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


The actions portrayed by Sgt. "Red" Irwin (his actual name is Henry E. Erwin) are an accurate depiction of the actions that earned him the Medal of Honor. See more »


The Heavy Bomber Song
Lyrics by Ned Washington
Music by Victor Young
See more »

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User Reviews

A decent film but the sloppy use of stock footage was a major annoyance.
19 February 2018 | by MartinHaferSee all my reviews

This film from Republic Pictures is a tribute to the B-29, the long range bomber that helped win the war in the Pacific. In many ways, I enjoyed it...and in others, I certainly didn't. It's a shame, as it really could have been a dandy picture.

The story is a semi-fictional account of the introduction of the bomber in the Pacific theater during WWII. It mostly follows the crew of one particular B-29 through the course of 1943 to the end of the war. I appreciate the film and its attempt to honor men who truly sacrificed so much. In particular, there is a scene involving Sgt. Erwin that is amazing and moving...mostly because it's a true case of heroism. Much of the film, unfortunately, is also made up using too much stock footage--footage that often didn't integrate well into the movie. The worst case was where P-51 Mustang fighter planes became P-39 Airocobras....planes that really did NOT look alike and even non-airplane buffs will notice. In addition, the studio head's girlfriend, Very Ralston, was unfortunately used in the film and as usual, her acting was amateurish and her Czech accent inexplicable.

For a much better film about the bomber, try 1952's "Above and Beyond" with Robert Taylor.

By the way, in this copy of "The Wild Blue Yonder" on YouTube, someone was having fun with the film and inserted a very, very brief clip of a 727 airliner (it first flew in 1963)! It obviously could not have been in the film originally, since it came out in 1951!

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