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"The Eagle and the Hawk"

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Character's Name: Henry Crocker
Release Date:  May 19, 1933
Director: Stuart Walker
Studio:  Paramount Publix
Running Time: 74 minutes

Cast: Fredric March (Jerry Young), Cary Grant (Henry Crocker), Jack Oakie (Mike Richards), Carole Lombard (The Beautiful Lady), Sir Guy Standing (Major Dunham), Adrienne D'Ambricourt (Fanny)

- by ZoŽ Shaw
Young and Crocker dislike each other. Young is an example to young recruits sent to the front. Young gets uptight about the senseless death going on about him, and the Major orders him to go on leave. He relaxes a little, but comes back to the front to find that another observer has been killed as the result of Crocker's attempt to get medals. Young commits suicide. Crocker covers up his act, and gets everyone to believe that Young was killed on a mission. He is buried a hero.

- by Laila Valente
The Eagle and the Hawk is an interesting piece of work of the early '30's. A very good film directed by Stuart Walker regarding the activities of the Royal Air Force during World War I. It's probably Cary Grant's best movie of that period of time. The story, by John Monk Saunders, places him side by side with Fredric March in a very anti-militaristic event. Grant is Henry Crocker, a brave, but cynical machine-gunner who is left behind by his colleague, Jeremiah Young (March), a flying hero and a role-model for the younger aviators. After the loss of another observer, Crocker reaches Young in France to become his co-pilot. Despite the many winning missions, the men continue to strongly dislike each other. Young, growing obsessed with the casualties of the war, begins to drink heavily. He is always on the edge of a break-down and a few days shore-leave is of no use. When he comes back from shore-leave, after a brief encounter with Carole Lombard, he finds his best friend (Jack Oakie) dead. He accuses Crocker of this loss, due to Crocker's medal hungry behavior. Young decides not to go out on any more missions with Crocker. The situation gets worse when Young's new observer, a seventeen-year-old boy, falls from the plane while Young successfully chases down an enemy. Back at the base, the other aviators cheer Young and throw a party for the new victory. But Young can't stand his life anymore and commits suicide. Crocker discovers Young's body, carries Young to his plane, fakes an attack and gives his friend a deserved and honorable departure.

Just one note : quite every flying scene is from other movies, like 'The Dawn Patrol', 'Lilac Time' and the legendary 'Wings'.

VARIETY Film Review - May 16, 1933
- by "Chic"
- submitted by Barry Martin
Strictly a formula story of the Royal Flying Corps by the man who wrote 'Wings' with a laboriously dragged in romantic bit to get a feminine star's name on the program.  But it takes more than 50 or 60 feet of sex stuff to make love interest.  It might better have been left out.

Nothing much new in the matter of plot, the same old yarn of the man who gets fed up on the uselessness of war.  Story owes more to the deftness with which it has been developed than to any basic interest.  Not overloaded with air footage, and that used has a direct bearing on the yarn and is not padding.  Men probably will go for the story, and many women will appreciate the psychology.  No war story is calculated to be a knockout just now, so this probably will not prove a strong grosser.  However, it will make good with those attracted; more than may be said for some studies.

Basic idea is the hero who is broken by the strain.  He has lost observer after observer without serious injury to himself, and it breaks his morale.  His last observer is a rather tough-fibered chap who has been unable to get his wings, but must wear the single pinion of an observer.  It was on March's recommendation he was left behind, and there is bad blood between them.  March is sent back home to regain his poise, there is a brief two-scene interlude with Carole Lombard, and he comes back to the lines still shaken.  He is disgusted with it all, and when he is acclaimed a hero he indulges in much the same tirade as has been written into other similar stories.  He is regarded with tolerance in the belief that he is drunk, but he goes to his room and shoots himself.

It is not until this point is reached that the element of novelty enters the story.  His quondam enemy conceals the fact of his death, loads him into a plane in early morning, takes him up and riddles the plane and body with machine gun fire.  Then he crashes to his own death, but he has given the man he hated - but understood - a hero's finish instead of the stigma of a quitter.  It is neatly turned, is unexpected and comes at a point where it gives impetus to an idea which seems to be closing in with a 'just another' tag.

Yarn is adroitly told in both dialog and action, Jack Oakie contributing some sorely-needed comedy touches here and there.  It is the only relief save for a delightfully played bit between Oakie and Adrienne D'Ambicourt, who makes the most of her single scene.  Carole Lombard contributes little in spite of sincere playing.  March offers a finely sensitive study, acting with force, but entirely without bombast.  Cary Grant is more along usual lines, but he supplies the complementary action effectively, and Sir Guy Standing as the commander gets a brief chance now and then.  

NEW YORK TIMES Film Review - May 13, 1933
- by Mordaunt Hall
- submitted by Barry Martin
In "The Eagle and the Hawk," at the Paramount, John Monk Saunders has written a vivid and impressive account of the effect of battles in the clouds upon an American ace. It is, fortunately, devoid of the stereotyped ideas which have weakened most of such narratives. Here is a drama told with a praiseworthy sense of realism, and the leading role is portrayed very efficiently by Fredric March.

Notwithstanding its tragic incidents, "The Eagle and the Hawk" is not gloomy, and for a good deal of the time Jack Oakie supplies comedy of a suitable blend. Actually it is surprising to see a story done as well as this, for in so many instances the producers would have insisted upon a happy ending. Every experience of Jerry Young (Mr. March) is set forth as it might have happened. The girl who meets him and who is impersonated by Carole Lombard does not appear until the picture is halfway through, and after a sequence that takes place in London she is not heard from again.

The various characters are etched clearly. Mr. Oakie is beheld as Mike Richards, who takes war with a smile and cares not a whit for medals. In fact, as long as he can he avoids a chance for decorations, trusting that he will thus dodge the possible chance of being sent on a dangerous mission. Yet Mike never shows the white feather. He is the type who prefers to hide his light under a bushel. And this splendid fellow, the life of the Royal Flying Squadron, with which he, Young and other Americans are fighting, breathes his last after bringing his observer safely home. It is a fine bit of acting by Mr. Oakie.

Lieutenant Young is the shining light for young men who are sent out to the front. The British Major, acted by Sir Guy Standing, tells Young that he is an example to the youngsters. But losing half a dozen observers in a short time gets on Young's nerves. He and Henry Crocker are together for a while as pilot and observer and they are successful, although they dislike each other heartily.

The Major, appreciating that Young's nerves are on edge, orders him to go on ten days' leave. Here is a series of episodes depicted in an intelligent and graphic fashion. On all sides the man who wants to get away from war hears nothing but chatter on fighting from the persons who give to battle all the glamour and glory they presume it possesses. They have never seen a dead observer pulled out of the fuselage of a plane - a man who had been smiling an hour before. They have never looked upon an airplane twisting in the air and crashing with a terrific explosion when it reaches the ground. It is not surprising that the drawing room talk irritates Young, who flees from one home party on hearing from a child that he wants to be a war flier.

On his return he takes a young fellow named Stevens for an observer and gunner. It is Stevens's first and last flight, for he is thrown out of the machine when Young loops the loop. But he brings down an enemy ace and his chagrin is accentuated by observing that the young German was but a youth.

How the story is worked out is best left untold here. It is a grim surprise, something one might read in a book, but which the picture makers dodge invariably for the sake of sending patrons away in a cheerful state of mind.

Stuart Walker's direction of this picture is thoroughly capable. Nothing appears to be overdone and no episode is too prolonged. Aside from the good work by Mr. March and Mr. Oakie, there are noteworthy impersonations by Cary Grant, Sir Guy Standing, Miss Lombard, Forrester Harvey and others.  

LOS ANGELES TIMES Film Review - April 12, 1939
- by John L Scott
- submitted by Renee Klish

'Eagle and Hawk' Begins Revival Engagement

Six years as reckoned by styles in film acting is a long time.  If you don't think so, visit the Paramount Theater, where "The Eagle and the Hawk," produced by Paramount Studios in 1933, began a revival engagement yesterday.

Fredric March, our No. 1 swashbuckler these days, portrays a disillusioned Royal Flying Corps ace, who finally goes crazy with the strain of combat in the air and commits suicide.

Cary Grant, who rates tops now as a light comedian, glowers and growls as March's personal hate.  Carole Lombard, another current ranking star, appears in but two scenes of "The Eagle and the Hawk."


Only one featured player seems natural, and he's Jack Oakie, thinner but just as jovial.

The four principals named would cost any plant the staggering total of $500,000 to secure for one picture today.  Yes, time marches on in the movies.

"The Eagle and the Hawk" is probably a "timely" feature, for it presents a strong preachment against war.  "I'm killing boys . . . and for what?" shouts March to his squadron just before the end.  There's no answer except one comment from a fellow flyer, who mutters, "He's blotto again."


As I remember the original, there was more torrid romance between Miss Lombard and March, when he meets her on leave.  But there's only two scenes now, and not even the briefest of embraces. 

Direction is divided between Stuart Walker and Mitchell Leisen, the latter just a fledgling megaphonist at the time.  The stage technique of Walker is quite apparent.

Filing out the cast are Forrester Harvey, Kenneth Howell, Leyland Hodgson, Virginia Hammond, Crauford Kent, Adrienne D'Ambricourt and the late Sir Guy Standing

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