Brief Background of the Movie
Twelve O’ Clock High is an American movie film released in December 21, 1949 based on the novel of Sy Bartlett and Beirne Lay Jr. about the 918th Heavy Bombardment Group of the U.S Army Air Forces (USAAF) during World War II.
The movie transitions from present to past as Harvey Stovall recalls his days with the Bomb group at a (fictional) USAAF airbase in Archbury. From there on a series of main plot characters are introduced by the movie, Major Harvey Stovall (later on as Lieutenant Colonel) as the Group Adjutant, Colonel Keith Davenport as Bomb Group Commander who is later relieved of his command by Major General Patrick Pritchard (Millard Mitchell), Commanding General of VIII Bomber Command, Eight Air Force. Pritchard places Brigadier General Frank Savage in command of the Bomb group composed of men such as Lieutenant Colonel Ben Gately who is replaced by Major Cobb as Group Air Executive, Major “Doc” Kaiser (Flight Surgeon), Lieutenant Bishop (Medal of Honor Nominee) and Sergeant McIllhenny.
The 918th Heavy Bombardment Group is composed of B-17 planes that conduct day precision bombings near Germany. Heavy losses and the inability of the Group Air Commander, Colonel Davenport, to inspire his men due to the “over-identification with his men” as deduced by General Savage, led to the group's loss of morale, discipline, courage and purpose.
The movie progresses as the “Hard Luck” group performs various bombing missions under General Savage while transforming its members into an organized and disciplined group. Near the end of the movie, General Savage is also transformed into a commander who has an “over-identification with his men”, same as with Colonel Davenport.
The movie closes with a transition from past to the present, showing the group adjutant back in civilian clothes again signifying that his flashback was...