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Aircraft Carrier Books and Movies

  US Aircraft Carriers,  Books and Videos

US Aircraft Carriers from WW1 to WW2 to the present. 

You can find out about us aircraft carriers through the  books and movies listed here.  Carrier history, Carrier specs and us navy aircraft carrier advancements.  This page covers the subjects of books, aircraft carrier books, aircraft carrier videos, aviation movies, DVD 's and  jet aircraft movie list.   Also Movie reviews of many US Navy Ships are listed on this page. 
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Aircraft Carriers
B00000F06S The fighting sullivans a great navy story
B00000F06S Fighting Sullivans (1944) 

• NTSC format (for use in US and Canada only)
• Clamshell Packaging 
• Color, Black & White, NTSC 

"The Fighting Sullivans" is the true story of five brothers who died together when their Navy ship, the Juneau, was sunk in the South Pacific during World War II. But only the last act of this 1944 film, directed by Lloyd Bacon, shows the Sullivans at war. Most of this film is pure Americana, following the lives of the boys from their childhood in Waterloo, Iowa. Thomas Mitchell and the marvelous Selena Royle are the loving parents, while the five boys are played by unknown actors: Edward Ryan (Al), John Campbell (Frank), James Cardwell (George), John Alvin (Matt), and George Offerman (Joe). Trudy Marshall plays their only sister, Genevieve. Top billing actually goes to Anne Baxter as the young girl who marries into the family and will be left a widow with a baby in arms. Ward Bond plays the Navy lieutenant who befriends the family when the Sullivans insist that they will only join up if they can serve together. Eventually the Navy relents and the boys get their wish.

Audiences knew the tragic fate of the Sullivans, although the film was originally released as "The Sullivans" and pretty much bombed at the box office. Retitled "The Fighting Sullivans" and re-released, it became a smash hit. The use of unknown actors made the film all the more effective, especially since it refrained from the sort of clichs you would expect. If the scene where the parents learn all five boys have died does not get you, the next scene will: Mr. Sullivan goes off to his job on the railroad and as the train passes the water tower where his boys waved to him as kids, he salutes them. Actually, this film works so well that the final shot, of the Sullivans in uniform striding across the clouds of the afterlife does not seem one whit hokey. There is a documentary available on the Sullivans, which tells how one of the boys survived the sinking before dying in the waters off of Guadalcanal. I would not have thought anything could have made this story more tragic, but that bit of information certainly made it worse for me.

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U.S. Aircraft Carriers
Hard Bound Book
An Illustrated History 

Offers detailed descriptions of the evolution of U.S.  aircraft carriers. Fully illustrated with deck plans, outboard profiles, sketches from  major design studies, and numerous detailed photographs. You are treated to  detailed information on every carrier class, from the gigantic warships of the Nimitz  class to the "side-wheeler" training carriers of the Great Lakes in WWII. Here, too, is a lucid explanation of the changing function of carriers, from their origin as auxiliaries  to their present role as the main components of the battle force. The appendices  contain a wealth of information on ship characteristics and equipment. 428 pgs., 321 illustrations, 8½"x 11", hdbd.

630020832X Flat Top (1952) 
A great deal of the splendid photography came from the excellent World War II documentary film, "The Fighting Lady" (not to be confused with the Van Johnson fiction movie, "Men of the Fighting Lady"), which was filmed during actual combat on the Aircraft Carrier Enterprise--the original "Big E"--whose combat record was very impressive. The shots of carrier deck action, landings, wing camera shots of enemies being shot down and ground installations being bombarded and strafed were beautiful and dramatic, and recorded actual combat with real people being killed.

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6302224454 Men of the Fighting Lady (1954) 
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When I first started watching this film, I thought it was about WWII. Hence, I was disappointed when I found that it was about Korea, but I soon lost all disillusionment. The story caught and held me very quickly. The dialogue is well written as it shows the feelings of the pilots about the futility of their continuing mission. The scene when one pilot has to guide his blinded friend back to the carrier is definitely a literal "knuckle-biter", as mentioned by another reviewer. I highly recommend this story to anyone. Period.

6302923026 Task Force (1949) 

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This is a well-made and highly entertaining story staring Gary Cooper as a Naval officer who devotes his career to the development of the aircraft carrier as the vanguard of future Naval superiority. This is an extremely entertaining film directed by Delmer Daves a meticulous craftsman who enhances his stories by bringing out the depth of his characters as is the case here. The film also featured Jane Wyatt, Walter Brennan, Julie London, Kenneth Tobey and Wayne Morris. The excellent photography was supplied by Robert Burks (Alfred Hitchcock's Cinematographer) and Wilfrid M. Cline. Franz Waxman (MISTER ROBERTS, STALAG 17, THE SPIRIT OF ST. LOUIS and OBJECTIVE, BURMA!) composed the score. The recognition of this great film is long overdue.

0515119148carrier,  afterburner by keith douglas
0515119148 Afterburn 

by Keith Douglass 
A movie about the USS Kitty Hawk and US aircraft carriers  operations.

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  available from
Book seven in Keith Douglas carrier series. With not having read any of the first six books, I found it fairly easy to "jump in" the heat of the action. There are many different levels to the story, but the main plot involves a fictional carrier task force involved in a un peacekeeping mission in the black sea. I enjoyed this book mainly because it dealt with a lot of "top gun" style action, and well developed characters, such as captain tombstone magruder.

0935553207carrier clash : the invasion of guadacanal
0935553207 Carrier Clash; 
Hard Bound Book

The Invasion of Guadacanal and the Battle of the Eastern Solomon's, August 1942 
by Eric Hamill, Eric Hammel 
Hardcover - 480 pages (April 1997) 
  available from

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Midwest Book Review
Beginning with detailed descriptions of the history of the aircraft carrier, the development of carrier-air tactics, the training of carrier pilots, and numerous operational considerations that defined the way carrier battles had to be fought, Carrier Clash: The Invasion Of Guadalcanal And The Battle Of The Eastern Solomon's, August 1942 takes the reader into the air with brave U. S. Navy fighter pilots as they protect their ships and the Guadalcanal invasion fleet against determined Japanese air attacks on August 7 and 8, 1942. After Hammel sets the state for the August 24 Battle of the Eastern Solomon's, he puts the reader right into the cockpits of the U. S. Navy Dauntless dive-bombers as they drive on the Imperial Navy light carrier Ryujo -- and hit the ship with 500-pound bombs! Carrier Clash is the definitive combat history of the Battle of the Eastern Solomon's' history's third battle (of only five) between American and Japanese aircraft carriers. Carrier Clash is an important contribution to the military history of World War II's battle for control of the Pacific.

0897090306 U.S.S. Constellation 
by Sanford Sternlicht 

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A precursor to todays weapons of retaliation against Islamic terrorists, Constellation was built in 1797 as part of a fleet intended to respond to the attacks of the Barbary Pirates. A smaller member of the fleet which included the U. S. S. Constitution (Old Ironsides), the Constellation boasts an impressive history spanning over two centuries. After exerting American power against the Barbary States, it served honorably in the War of 1812. Thereafter it alternated between the reserve fleet and active service on a variety of missions. After sitting out the Mexican War, the Yankee Racehorse served in the Civil War, initially protecting American shipping in the Mediterranean and later as part of the West Gulf Blockading Squadron.

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1572521635situation critical  has a lot to do with senator mccain
1572521635 Situation Critical: 
1572521635The U.S.S. Forrestal (1997) 

Description Situation Critical is the true story of the disaster that occurred aboard the aircraft carrier USS Forrestal, off the coast of North Vietnam. Witness the events as they unfold in real time, as the actual footage from TV cameras aboard the ship and voice recordings from the ship's PA system are used.

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Wings of Gold

The U.S. Navy’s fiercest fighting planes in a one hour action video. Includes F/A-18 Hornet, F-14 Tomcat, A-6 Intruder, E-2C Hawkeye, and AV-8B Harrier. Aircraft carrier flight operations on the high seas, Tomcats vs. Libyan MiGs, and the Blue Angels too! Color. 60 min.

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The Battle for Midway
National Geographic

More than 50 years ago, a lonely outpost of coral and sea named Midway erupted  into one of WWII's greatest naval battles. Now, "Titanic" discoverer Dr. Robert  Ballard and a team of experts return to Midway to attempt the impossible: locate at  least one downed aircraft carrier more than three miles underwater. With him are four WWII veterans - Japanese and Americans - whose gripping stories of wartime  survival create an emotional counterpoint to the search for their missing ships. 82  min.  This is the start of the midway class aircraft carriers.

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The Battle for Midway DVD

More than 50 years ago, a lonely outpost named Midway erupted into one of WWII's greatest naval battles. Now, "Titanic" discoverer Dr. Robert Ballard returns to Midway  to attempt the impossible: locate at least one downed aircraft carrier more than three miles underwater. With him are four WWII veterans - Japanese and Americans  whose gripping stories of wartime survival create an emotional counterpoint to the  search for their missing ships. 82 min. 2

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Weapons at War

From bombing runs to high-flying spy balloons, see how airships affected WWI. Trace  the remarkable advances that made them among the most sophisticated aircraft  during the years between the wars. See rare footage of the USS Los Angeles, which the U.S. hoped to use as an airborne aircraft carrier, and see how Germany deployed  its Zeppelins as part of the Nazi war machine. From the birth of aviation to the death of a dream, this is the compelling story of airships at war. 50 min. 2

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The Flying Carriers

What a find! This two-hour long video focuses on the USS Akron and the USS  Macon, two lighter-than-air ships that were built for the U.S. Navy in the late 1920s  and early 1930s. You'll see construction, testing, operational service... and  wreckage, too, as both ships met unfortunate ends. Perhaps most incredible is the  air launching and recovery of early fighter planes from these massive airships - truly  designed as aircraft carriers in the sky! 110 min., .

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Nova: Aircraft Carrier!

The USS Independence is a floating airport with 5,000 men and one mission: to provide a safe home base for American fighter planes during the Gulf War. By  coincidence, NOVA cameras were on board when the Independence was called to military action. What you'll see in this special film is more than just a close-up view  of shipboard life: this film captures the intensity, anger and adrenaline of battle like no cameras have ever before. 60 min.

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Face Off: Yamamoto vs Nimitz
History Alive

 Aircraft carriers were the most important pieces on the board in an epic chess match  between the U.S.' and Japan's foremost naval commanders - Admirals Yamamoto and  Nimitz. This video uses archival footage, the testimony of veterans, and interviews  with historians and strategists to analyze the Battle of Midway, comparing the styles of the two commanders and pinpointing the pivotal moments of the encounter that  was a harbinger of American triumphs to come. It is an extraordinary, inside look at  what the two admirals were thinking as they made their date with history. 50 min. 2

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Weapons at War Video Set
17 Volumes
Video Set.

Examine the evolution of modern weaponry through this thrilling video series produced by the History Channel! 15 volume collection covers airships to aircraft carriers, helicopters to bombers, and so much  more. You get to see the aircraft in action, hear interviews with the participants, and get in the cockpit to feel what it was really like to be there. For an easy way to build a wonderful video library, this can't be beat! Each volume is approximately 50 min. 299.00

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The Golden Age Remembered
Hard Bound Book

U.S. Naval Aviation 1919-1941 Wooldridge. The period between the world wars was a  time of airshows, races, record breaking flights, daredevils and technological  innovations by the U.S. Navy. Included are the reminiscences of pilots, engineers and  innovators who were the leaders in the development of aircraft carriers, rigid airships  and long range flying boats, as well as naval aviation doctrine and tactics. 341 pgs., 46 photos, 6"x 9", hdbd 3

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Warbirds of the Sea
Hard Bound Book

A History of Aircraft Carriers and Carrier-Based Aircraft Musciano. Covers the history, design, development, and combat career of aircraft carriers and shipboard aircraft  from conception to future outlook. Examines the personalities involved, why the  aircraft carrier was conceived, and why it is an important weapon. 800+ B&W and  color photos, line drawings and maps, 336 pgs., 8½"x 11", hdbd.

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Into the Jet Age
Hard Bound Book

Conflict and Change in Naval Aviation, 1945-1975 Wooldridge. Rarely have the  reminiscences of such a distinguished group of naval officers been assembled under one cover. Through the words of the men who were there and made it happen, this book tells the story of how change molded the aircraft carrier and thus all of naval  aviation. 352 pgs., 34 photos, 6"x 9", hdbd. 3

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US Aircraft Carriers in Action
Soft Bound Book

Stern. Covers the development and service of aircraft carriers from the first built -  HMS Furious completed in 1918 and the U.S. Navy's first, the USS Langley completed  in 1922 - through their service in World War II. Heavily illustrated, this is a great introduction to the early years of naval aviation. 49 pgs., 90 B&W photos, six color profiles, and detailed line art. 11"x 8¼", sfbd. 1

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Aircraft Carriers of the World
1914 to the Present
Hard Bound Book

An Illustrated Encyclopedia Chesneau. This is the first comprehensive reference work  to detail in one volume - with data, line drawings and photographs - the 360-plus  carriers designed or projected by the world's navies. Arranged chronologically according to country, each basic design is discussed, and appearance notes and career summaries are also presented for each individual carrier. 288 pgs., 400+ photos and line drawings, 9½"x 9½", hdbd.

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Jane's Fighting Ships of WWI
Hard Bound Book

Reprinted from Jane's All the World's Ships of the WWI era (beginning with the 1914  edition), this is a fascinating historical document. With over 1,000 illustrations and  data tables for ships from around the world, this is a great look at the world's navies during a time of great change - the time when the aircraft carrier and the submarine  were becoming major naval weapons. (See WWII edition also available). 320 pgs.,  8¾"x 11¼", hdbd. 40.00

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Fly Navy
Hard Bound Book

Naval Aviators and Carrier Aviation - a History. Kaplan. Offering a rare glimpse of life  onboard an aircraft carrier, this book paints a vivid and often hair-raising portrait of  military aircraft carriers and carrier crews, and the planes and pilots who depend on them. Covers WWII to the present day, including full descriptions of great carriers  and the planes - from Hellcats to Harriers - that flew from them. 256 pgs., 200+  color and B&W photos and illustrations, 9¾"x 9¾", hdbd.

1574270613Blue Ops, naval aviation showing how the military handles its jet airplanes
1574270613 Blue Water Ops :
On the Front Line of U.S. Naval Aviation 
by Erik Hildebrandt, Stephen Coonts 
Hardcover books - 456 pages 
(May 1998)

Book Description 
Regardless of fatigue, equipment trouble, low fuel, poor weather conditions, or time of day, when a U.S. Navy pilot is on BLUE WATER OPS, the carrier is his only place to land. In catapult and recovery operations, stress on pilots, deck crew, and machinery  reaches incredible levels. The sights, smells, and sounds of carrier aviation come alive in this book of spectacular photographs. 120 color  photos. 

About the Author
Erik Hildebrandt is a freelance photographer and writer based in Minneapolis, MN. In addition to contributing to Time and U.S. News & World Report, he has established himself as one of America's premier aviation photographers.



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