Aces High

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Aces High (1976)

Aces High is a 1976 World War I film that chronicles a week in the life of a newly graduated British RAF aviator (Peter Firth) during his first assignment as a combat pilot in the 76th Squadron Royal Flying Corps that happens to be commanded by his former house captain Major John Gresham (Malcolm McDowell). The cast includes Christopher Plummer and Simon Ward. This movie based on the novel Journey's End by R. C. Sherriff



The following weapons were used in the film Aces High:

Contents



Lee-Enfield No.1 Mk.III*

The opening sequence takes place at Eton College during a 1916 recruitment drive for the British Armed Forces.

Lee-Enfield No.1 Mk.III* - .303 British. This was the main battle rifle of British and Commonwealth forces during the First World War, introduced in 1907 it has seen action throughout the 20th century.
A Lee-Enfield is seen mounted on a stand for the students to see during the opening credits.

Mauser C96 "Broomhandle"

During a "dogfight" Major Gresham (McDowell) makes a landing in order to fool the German pilot (and observer) that he has been hit. In the last second he takes off, though the German pilot tries to shoot him with his Mauser C96.

Mauser C96 "Red 9" Version for the German Army - 9x19mm. This model is World War One dated.
The German pilot and observer approaches Greshams aircraft and tries to shoot him when he starts to take off.

Lewis Gun

The British 76 squadron is equipped with the Royal Aircraft Factory "S.E.5" which is equipped with a Vickers MG and a Lewis Gun, the latter mounted on the top wing. The Avro observer plane is also mounted with a Lewis Gun for the observer in the backseat.

Aircraft mounted Lewis Gun - .303 British
Lieutenant 'Tommy' Thompson (David Wood) shouts encouragement to Croft just before takeoff.
Croft (Simon Ward) and Gresham (Malcom McDowell)
Gresham standing up to clear his Lewis Gun mid-air. (The gun had jammed)
Gresham double-checks his Lewis before a patrol
Capt. "Uncle" Sinclair (Christopher Plummer) fires his Lewis as an observer. The container on top of the wing is a fuel tank.

Vickers Machine gun

The S.E.5 and the Avro observer both have Vickers machine guns mounted. There were a special aircraft version of the MG during the war but in the movie it looks like they have used regular Army type.

Vickers gun with ribbed water jacket - .303 British
Vickers Aircraft Machine Gun
Croft with his Vickers in a S.E.5.
Same, looking forward.
Croft flying the Avro observer with a right-side mounted Vickers MG.

Maxim MG08/15

The Maxim is seen mounted on aircraft and in a tripod for anti-aircraft fire.

Maxim MG08/15 - 7.92x57mm Mauser
Maxim LMG 08/15 "Spandau" - 7.92x57mm Mauser
A forward mounted MG08/15 on a German observerplane.
A German observerplane with just one MG08/15. It is possible it might be a mockup.
Another angle of a suspected mockup.
AcesHighMaxim (5).jpg
Two forward facing MG08/15. This is actually reused film from the 1966 WW1 movie "The Blue Max".
A pair of groundmounted MG08/15 getting ready to fire at approaching aircraft.
AcesHighMaxim (9).jpg
AcesHighMaxim (10).jpg

Parabellum MG14

The German observerplane is also armed with a Parabellum MG14.

Parabellum MG14 - 7.92x57mm Mauser
Rearward facing MG14 on a German observerplane.
AcesHighMaxim (4).jpg


Mills bomb

Lieutenant 'Tommy' Thompson (David Wood) is seen constructing a small device which enables him to drop hand grenades (Mills Bomb) from his aircraft.

No. 36M Mk.I "Mills Bomb" High-Explosive Fragmentation hand grenade.
Croft and "Tommy" on the right with the device and several Mills bombs.
Closeup of the device with two Mills bombs.

See Also

Movies Journey's End (1930)   •  The Other Side (1931)  •  Aces High (1976)  •  Journey's End (2018)
Television Journey's End (1988)



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