Red Tails


Red Tails

Critics Consensus

Despite a worthy fact-based story and obvious good intentions, Red Tails suffers from one-dimensional characters, corny dialogue, and heaps of clichés.



Reviews Counted: 132

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Audience Score

User Ratings: 47,410


All Critics | Top Critics
Average Rating: N/A
Reviews Count: 0
Fresh: 0
Rotten: 0


Average Rating: 3.4/5

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Movie Info

1944. To help win the war, the Pentagon brass has no choice but to consider the untested African-American pilots of the experimental Tuskegee training program. Just as the young Tuskegee men are about to be shut down and shipped back home, they are given the ultimate chance to show their courage. These intrepid young airmen take to the skies to fight for their country - and the fate of the free world. -- (C) Official Site

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Terrence Howard
as Colonel A.J. Bullard
Cuba Gooding Jr.
as Major Emmanuel Stance
Bryan Cranston
as Colonel William Mortamus
Nate Parker
as Marty "Easy" Julian
David Oyelowo
as Joe "Lightning" Little
Tristan Wilds
as Ray "Junior" Gannon
Method Man
as Sticks
Lee Tergesen
as Colonel Jack Tomlinson
as Andrew "Smokey" Salem
Elijah Kelley
as Samuel "Joker" George
Andre Royo
as Antwan "Coffee" Coleman
Kevin Phillips
as Leon "Neon" Edwards
Leslie Odom Jr.
as Declan "Winky" Hall
Marcus T. Paulk
as David "Deke" Watkins
Michael B. Jordan
as Maurice Wilson
Lars Van Riesen
as Pretty Boy
Rick Otto
as Flynt
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Critic Reviews for Red Tails

All Critics (132) | Top Critics (32)

The true story of the Tuskegee Airmen, a squadron of African-American second world war flying aces, is one of those amazing tales that you just couldn't make up.

Jun 7, 2012 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…

There's no sense of threat or danger: this is a film with its head stuck firmly in the clouds.

Jun 6, 2012 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…

Sadly, Red Tails tells its inspiring story in the most old-fashioned, Saturday-afternoon-at-the-movies kind of way. The movie occasionally flies but it never soars.

Mar 2, 2012 | Full Review…
Top Critic

This is so generic as storytelling that it fails even as a basic history lesson: it's hard to believe that the stock conflicts on-screen have any connection to real events.

Jan 23, 2012 | Full Review…

One can get away with a lot of cornball speeches a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away but it doesn't work nearly as well a short time ago on planet Earth.

Jan 21, 2012 | Rating: 2.5/4 | Full Review…

Red Tails is better than nothing - but "nothing" isn't the other option. That HBO film is still out there, and Red Tails doesn't add to it or improve upon it.

Jan 21, 2012 | Rating: C | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Red Tails

Excellent movie I can only hope it was all factual, and not points added to justifie race. Movie worth 5 stars

Bruce Bruce
Bruce Bruce

Super Reviewer

The movie has a made-for-TV feel to it and unremarkable characters. Nevertheless, it's an interesting history lesson.

Christian C
Christian C

Super Reviewer


"Red Tails" is a movie of all flash and little substance. The story is honestly another run of the mill blacks overcoming adversity type story. Which is fine, but it usually works better in sports movies(dunno why but it does). Honestly, it could worked great here and probably been very inspirational. However, the filmmakers decided to concentrate more on the visual effects of the dogfights as opposed to the execution of the story surrounding the action. On that note, the dogfights are amazing, and should have been in 3D. The movie was shot with special HD type cameras(or so I've read) and it gives it a very distinctive look. The acting is sub par. Terrance Howard and Cuba Gooding Jr. both do good(not great) work in their smaller roles. The remaining cast,of mostly unknowns, is just standard and probably could have been cast better. Interested in the Tuskegee Airman's story, then you should probably check out the 90's HBO movie starring Laurence Fishburne. But it you want to watch amazing dogfight action, and don't need a great story, then this is for you.

Everett Johnson
Everett Johnson

Super Reviewer

Ehhh. Extreeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeemely cheesy; Cringe-worthy dialogue, horrible acting (Cuba Gooding Jr. is never believable), and directing and editing that brings nostalgic reminders of Disney channel movies makes this minorities-exceeding-expectations flick a bore. The only redeeming quality that "Red Tails" represents is the good-hearted story, but the execution is too tainted for it to be considered a film worth watching.

Albert Kim
Albert Kim

Super Reviewer

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