User Score

Mixed or average reviews- based on 91 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 53 out of 91
  2. Negative: 21 out of 91

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  1. Dec 1, 2013
    It was a long and boring movie that had no signs of encouragement all throughout the entire film. I honestly wonder what the director was thinking. Or perhaps, he wasn't.
  2. Aug 3, 2013
    I gotta say, my expectation did not met when watching the movie. When the trailers of this movie was first released, I was excited with all those actions and stuff (I'm a big fan of war action movies). But when I watched it, I thought the trailer was much better than the real movie. Seriously I don't blame for the effects and actions used in this movie but I'd like to blame on the depth of story, dialogue and worst of all, the background music. For me, background music in movies are what affects me the most into getting the feel when watching a story. It gives that sense of mood for that particular scene. But when I saw Red Tails and the background music that was used, I gotta say that was crap. This movie deserves more effort and details. I thought that if the director focused on those kind of aspect, it would have turned out well. The CGI effects and actions was good but sometimes it's the little things that can have a large impact on the whole outcome. Expand
  3. Jul 30, 2013
    There are aspects of Red Tails that are thoroughly enjoyable, but the poor plot line and inseparable character traits ultimately led to its demise. In short, there are to many story lines to be properly understood. Had it focused on the love story/relationship between the two main men it could have worked. Had it focused purely on the historical elements it could have worked. Unfortunately, it tries to tackle all three and the result is a confusing, forced, unsatisfactory ending. There is so little exposition that all the characters seem to be carbon copies of one another. They are all pilots, yes, but what makes them unique? The special effects, like many movies from LucasFilms, are almost to extreme to be believed, but the sound and lighting were dead on. Red Tails is worth a watch if you enjoy war flicks, but if you aren't interested don't go out of your way to see this film. Expand
  4. Nov 29, 2012
    This was a good movie but not great and what's unfortunate is that it had the potential to be that. The actors were great and the story being based on true events gave it a perfect opportunity to do great things. But unlike the men in the film, it didn't take advantage of it. The stereotypically needless explosions seemed more abundant than usual, the dialogue was hammy, and the plot (not the part that was true but the added character drama) was too predictable. Combine those things with a horrible soundtrack and you get an average movie. Expand
  5. Nov 2, 2012
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Probably one of the worst high budget films ever made. I was laughing at it non stop because the stereotypes are just so in your face. Lucas must have known this film was a complete joke. I can't believe it even exists. The plot and the subject matter if definitely film worthy, but it's approached in such a patronizing, unrealistic and childish way that you don't really appreciate what these men achieved. The dog fights look great as you'd expect but they'd completely unrealistic. You've got these tiny planes making multiple passes over naval warships, somehow dodging the flak from 5-6 anti aircraft guns and still making it home in one piece. Black jesus or no black jesus to keep you safe, this is just ridiculous. Worth a watch if you fancy a giggle though. The films just about manages to stay entertaining as it's so utterly utterly dire. Expand
  6. Sep 12, 2012
    After having consecutively viewed two early 2012 wide release war films, this and 'Act of Valor', I can say that 'Red Tails' is the better, but by no standard a worthy movie of it's subject material. It contains a lot of unauthentic dialogue between the Tuskegee airmen (which is really the most crucial and most difficult aspect of a war film to capture) and effects that would be considered the greatest effects of all time in a PC flier game, but are sadly just mediocre by today's standards for film visual effects. Throughout I remained unengaged emotionally and couldn't care less about the plights of these men, who I'm sure in real life had more struggles than those portrayed here. The movie is also a lot longer than could keep my attention and my mind began to drift to other things, missing occasional plot elements here and there, but I knew that the film would become redundant and I certainly could come back in with full understanding having missed nothing. I'm sure that the Tuskegee airmen are a subject not just worthy of a movie, but a great one at that, but 'Red Tails' isn't it. Expand
  7. Jul 18, 2012
    Every second I was watching it I was wishing that it would just end. The movie suffered from it's leads who all were annoying in their own way. There is no character development they just have a bunch of airplanes shooting at things like trains, boats, other planes, military bases, but it's not even entertaining. This is seriously the whole movie, right here. Planes shoot - There's a new mission - Fly - Shoot - Someone you didn't even know existed dies - Everyone's sad - Shoot - Mission Accomplished! - Yay! ...... I'm not even kidding. It's that bad. Expand
  8. Jun 21, 2012
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. When I saw the trailer for this movie, it looked like it could of been a very good WWII movie. The film follows a group of African American Fighter pilots who struggle to get the appreciation that they deserve. The story starts with the pilots attacking only certain targets such as trains and trucks while the White Americans attacked all kinds of enemy targets. However by the end of the film, they are helping the Americans bomb Germany and attack the German Fighter Pilots.

    The film tells the story that many people may have not heard about
    The dog fights look good
    The acting is not too good in parts
    Due to the choice in actors, many people may give it a skip because there are not any big name actors
    Graphics are also poor in parts

    The Rating
    I would have to give Red Tails a 5 out of 10
  9. Jun 11, 2012
    Besides the fact that it's about black pilots in WW2 this film is rather the same as most other fighter pilot movies. The (mostly CGI) dogfights are nicely done but the film drags on a bit too long and unfolds in an unsurpising and rather straightforward way. It didn't make too much money so I guess nobody was really waiting for this story to be brought to the screen (except maybe for Mr. Lucas who has been working to get it to the screen since 1988). George will apparently also bless us with a sequel and a prequel direct by Spike Lee and Lee Daniels. Expand
  10. Jun 1, 2012
    Everything about this movie as an abomination unless your black then its amazing, so i have to have a longer review of this peice of crap, um the converstations in the movie are very repetitive no story line, actors are pretty bad, like they barely react when one of their friends die or atleast is a compeletly false reactor this can be said for every aspect of the movie.
  11. May 27, 2012
    Action was good but the story line was mediocre! If it were not for all the great flying scenes the movie would not be very good at all. If that organization was as loose as they portray it would have been a wonder if they would have succeeded at all.
  12. May 24, 2012
    This movie has great characters, action, and emotion. After watching it, I literally stood up and held my hand to my heart. This is the best African American action picture and the best aerial dogfight movie. This is a very important story that everyone needs to know about. It looks and sounds spectacular on blu-ray. The extra features are superb. I just wish there were more of them. That's not because they're lacking but because I love the movie so much. Expand
  13. May 12, 2012
    "Red Tails" (2012) is a film (fictional, but based on real events) directed by Anthony Hemingway and written by John Ridley, based on a book by John B.Holway, which tells the story of a team of African- American pilots, in the Tuskegee training program at a time when racial segregation was diffuse and explicit in society and in the army.

    The movie presents production of George Lucas film
    with excellent fight scenes and aircraft recreations, one of the best films in this aspect of computer graphics recreating battles of World War II, despite having literally a more "clean" and idealized scenarios than in reality.

    The land filming are also very well produced and well cared for, until the rebuilding of items used at the time and the scenario itself, but again too clean ans sterile to be real.

    The retraction of everything in the film, is reminiscent of a romance book with bright colors and spreading posters that refer to the fictitious character of the story without forgetting the important events they represent, and in many parts recalls Star Wars in some scenes (perhaps by association). However suffers from the excessive romanticizing of the environment of World War II, for example in the Italian city where the team has its basis, nor does it seem that they are in plain Second World War, in a country newly taken by the allies.

    My other criticism comes from the viewpoint of someone who likes aviation, especially the period of World War II:

    The recreation of the battle scenes are perfect graphically, with minute details on the planes, but is erroneous in part by using unrealistic characterization of the fighting, the ease with which German pilots were destroying bombers (it was not so easy to fly among the fire defense ), and in the fighting scenes, where many German pilots have almost no skills, especially against pilots recently started in the fighting.

    Another thing is about the explosiveness of various vehicles such as ambulances, which in reality were destroyed and not exploded in tremendous fireballs.

    The characters have reasonable performances, and different for the various main characters, who make up the cast, each with a distinct personality of each other, but suffers from overuse of clichés for both the allied Afro-American characters, as for the Germans (we have the classic German pilot scars on the face and evil nature).

    This among many other things that do not match, such as flight and strategies including the use of some aircraft in inaccurate roles and fictitious defense strategies, which do not correspond with reality. The research on the appearance of the aircraft was very good, but on the conditions of their use was not. Some combat scenes though graphically very good, just like the characters, are characterized and more like a video-game / light romance than a movie about war, which in other respects make the general overview of the film as a matinée of the 50- 60's, highly romanced and unreal.

    The unfolding of the story the film tells how this group, that was segregated even from the white pilots, won an opportunity to show their value equality among whites in battle theaters in Italy and Germany (at the end of the film). Among the main story we have small portions of drama and romance by distinguished members of the squad.

    The highlight of the film, is to show the history, which must be unknown to many people of the general public. Another film that must be watched on the subject is HBO's "The Tuskegee Airmen" (1995), which is a little more realistic.

    In the end, this movie turns out to be a choice for an uncompromising movie for fans of aviations scenes in general, or who wanted to know some more about this historic event, excelling in the subject of the aerial scenes, but sinning by the characterization of characters and excessive romantic dramatization.
  14. May 5, 2012
    Lots of great action and a good story. Some of the non action scenes go on too long and it would be better if they cut a bit from each of them to reduce the length of the movie, but they do contribute to the story. There is one guy who's acting is laughably bad but he only has a tiny role. (The p38 pilot)
  15. Mar 26, 2012
    I remember when I watch the poster of Red Tails, I think: "other boring movie about the war, or all this things?". After when I watch that George Lucas do the movie I think: "I wanna watch the movie", but after when I watch the movie I say: The movie is simple. Red Tails is a regular movie, the cast is okay, but I think some in the level of Star Wars, but no, in moments the movie is really boring, but in other moments is brilliant. I think that red tails is a DVD movie, but no a cinema movie. Expand
  16. Mar 13, 2012
    This film was ok, but if were to recommed a film about the Tuskegee Airman, i'd deffinatly reffer people to the video store for a copy of the last one that was made. The story isn't as good and i can't really say that improved CG made the flight sequences any more exciting. Worth a watch, but i'd wait for Netflix for this one if i could do it again.
  17. Feb 21, 2012
    Might be one of the worst WW2 movies. It certainly is not based on historical facts. In the end they claim that the Tuskegee Airmen held the best record of WW2 of any Fighter groups in WW2.
  18. Feb 5, 2012
    I thought this movie seemed to give a good representation of the Tuskegee Airman. I am a WW2 Aviation history buff, so I loved the movie. It was full of great flying action and a good story. By the way, did you all know the Red Tails were the ONLY fighter squadron in the ENTIRE war that NEVER lost a bomber to enemy aircraft?! I think this says a lot about the courage, training and ability of the Tuskegee Airman. Expand
  19. Feb 3, 2012
    I really enjoyed this film. It was entertaining. The air-to-air combat scenes were pretty amazing. I loved the photography and cinematography. And the special effects blew me away.
  20. Feb 1, 2012
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Hokey story but so what? Flight scenes were fantastic! POV in the fighters and the bombers really showed how fast things happen. Most obvious cliche to me: I knew the guy was dead as soon as she said yes. Expand
  21. Feb 1, 2012
    After watching Red Tails I left the movie feeling like I had not learned a single thing about the Tuskegee Airmen or black pilots in World War II. It seemed like the movie started at â
  22. Jan 31, 2012
    Red Tails is a really great film. It starts with action and doesn't let up until the end. Lucas and his team have deftly used the movie to tell the main story of the Tuskegee Airmen while leaving the origin and after-effects of the war for another time. This gives it a more action oriented feel rather than being a documentary. It's light on the drama and heavy on the action to give it more entertainment heft. I think this works in favor of the movie as it keeps the viewer engaged while learning of the exploits of Easy and Lightning the film's main heroes. Expand
  23. Jan 30, 2012
    "Red Tails" seemed to be trying to emulate those great old war films of the 1940s, but it lacked the corny charm and sometimes riveting drama of those movies. "Red Tails" was at it's best when the theater was filled with the roar of those P51s screaming across the movie screen. Other than that, it wasn't impossible to get through, but very close to a yawner.
  24. Jan 27, 2012
    Unless your totally burned out by decades of Swedish art films

    your Inner Child will love Red Tails.

    Great sets, 1940's dialogue

    Terrific production, phenomenal action
  25. Jan 27, 2012
    I loved Red Tails because it is a fun, action-packed, shoot-em-up movie that incorporates an important story too often left out of history. I found the chemistry between the actors to be wonderful, and the story to be captivating -- i.e., underdogs fighting for a chance to kick some Nazi butt (not to mention just get recognized by their fellow countrymen as human beings). Lastly it's refreshing to see a broader story told about our past, and celebrate a group of often unsung heroes. Thankfully, much of Red Tails is spent in the skies, where fighter planes swoop and zoom in thrilling dogfights with incendiary direct hits. Executive producer George Lucas apparently gave Hemingway the keys to his CGI kingdom, creating marvelously designed in-flight action and a sappy, snappy salute to the Tuskegee Airmen.'ve read have some merit. Some of the dialogue may be stilted, some of the acting is stiff (but the acting of one of the lead pilots, Joe Little - a.k.a. "Lighting" is fabulous), the historical accuracy might not be spot-on... BUT, frankly I don't think these flaws take away from the bigger package of an exciting action movie. Cuba Gooding, Jr. as Major Emanuel Stance

    Nate Parker as Martin "Easy" Julian

    David Oyelowo as Joe "Lightning" Little

    Lars van Riesen as "Pretty Boy" (the German antagonist pilot)

    Ne-Yo as Andrew "Smoky" Salem

    Tristan Wilds as Ray "Ray Gun" or "Junior" Gannon

    Andre Royo as Chief "Coffee" Coleman
  26. Jan 27, 2012
    Wow. Many critics have slammed the film. Not every movie is the artsy, indie, twisting plot will be a mess. I do not like the move from time to time, but it is not one of those films. If you are looking to feel like you're full of good movies, great special effects (and you do not take this film to be) inspired and learn something about history, then, to see this film and do not listen to critics. I see the movie opening night with my wife and we both love!

    It was a great pace, the action was great, the game was great and we got it, was never really a part of World War II led to the big screen to see until now. I can not stress this point. The war ended in 1945, is a sad story and we have finally achieved in 2012.

    We have seen the show late. Friends to meet the film, and was the last time "they" could not, we have shown that flaked and did not show up so we went ahead, and he saw it. Even a week after a long, cold working and the fight against a very long day, I was at the end of the film, and then glued and not fall asleep. In fact, when the end credits came up, then sat on the seat in the theater and for the first time I was served. (My film before the end of the film is good, you know, rather than a film you can not wait until the end)

    It is interesting to criticism almost universally criticized for representing the interests of Hollywood and Hollywood, this film was that it is not George Lucas contributed to this film in the first place. You must be a connection.

    A lot of respect for red-tails. The Red tails "into the fight just to fight" and "Top Gun" had their day. Man, these guys all had to go through the struggle, and perhaps only opportunity to see a country of their second-class citizens who died as a huge amount of integrity and humanity. Many, many people say that any color or origin should not forget, you guys fight your own war. level rarely seen and it really speaks to the quality of these people is integrity. It was really inspiring!

    P51 Mustang fighter that I think is my new favorite. 300 MPH cruising speed and maneuverability with a top speed of 450 mph and that was it, 1940 is a prop driven plane. Sweet!

    Thank you Mr. Lucas to the movie. Is doing well, so I hope I will be able to see more.
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  27. Jan 23, 2012
    This movie is excellent. It is very historically accurate as well. Most importantly it does address race and discrimination in a meaningful way without making that the focal point of the film. As the theme states, "courage has no color" and that is expressed throughly as this is not a sad story about victims but a triumphant story about heroes despite all odds serving their country and excelling in it. Expand
  28. Jan 23, 2012
    This movie was terrible. The story could have and should have been much more in depth. I liked the idea that G. Lucas wanted to produce an all black cast, but this simply wasn't worth paying $19 for two tickets.
  29. Jan 23, 2012
    Not a perfect movie, but definitely enjoyable. The characters are likable and the aerial combat is spectacular. This movie was not meant to be a docudrama about the Tuskegee airmen, but more of an action movie set to inspire today's youths and show a side of WWII that few know about. If you want factual accounts, then watch the History channel, but if you want to be entertained by a movie that was inspired by the Tuskegee Airmen, then please go see this movie. Expand
  30. Jan 22, 2012
    I really enjoyed this film! Granted the dialogue could have been better, but it was action packed, it had romance, and keep in mind, Lucas probably has prequels and other things that he wrote into the movie. I doubt if they will see the light of day, being that he didn't get HUGE numbers like he had wanted, but it had action, and romance, and lot of other things that stood out.

    he was going off of the information given to him from surviving Tuskegee Airmen, and trying to make it as accurate as possible in their eyes as he could. Well played, Mr Lucas, that was $11.00 well spent!! Expand

Mixed or average reviews - based on 32 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 10 out of 32
  2. Negative: 4 out of 32
  1. Reviewed by: Peter Travers
    Jan 27, 2012
    You leave Red Tails thinking of what might have been instead of what is – a missed opportunity.
  2. Reviewed by: Marc Savlov
    Jan 25, 2012
    Red Tails is both a stirring and simplistic tribute to the men that not only shattered the U.S. Army Air Corps' racial barrier but also saved the lives of many a white, B-17 crew member, all while downing countless numbers of Hitler's formidable, jet-propelled Luftwaffe.
  3. Reviewed by: Steve Persall
    Jan 20, 2012
    Thankfully, much of Red Tails is spent in the skies, where fighter planes swoop and zoom in thrilling dogfights with incendiary direct hits. Executive producer George Lucas apparently gave Hemingway the keys to his CGI kingdom, creating marvelously designed in-flight action and a sappy, snappy salute to the Tuskegee Airmen.