November 11, 2006 1:16 PM   Subscribe

The Great War in the Air is a 69-part video project, clearly a labor of love, by one Jan Goldstein, a musician, painter, and publican. Overwhelmed? Here's a representative sample: Part 7, on the French ace Georges Guynemer. Please note: extensive use of YouTube. Many of the images seen in the film may be perused at earlyaviator.com.
posted by mwhybark (11 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
i am impressed so far.
of course, I've not yet made a good dent in its offering.
posted by Busithoth at 2:06 PM on November 11, 2006

The pieces continue on through the war. Guynemer is featured in a couple of segments until his death/disappearance. This is great. An example of a dedicated fan at work.
posted by CCBC at 2:47 PM on November 11, 2006

Only one post about Armistice day? Sigh. This documentary is a good (and large) effort, but it seems to (mostly) recycle the information found in Quentin Reynolds's great history adventure, They Fought for the Sky. Rickenbacker's autobiograhy may also be of interest. Don't forget: Göring was a German fighter pilot.

The classic Dynamix/Sierra flightsim The Red Baron included massive amounts of information on the people and planes of what is called by some to be Europe's final show of military chivalry.

WWI Previously on Metafilter (docs) (remaining veterans MeFi, The Wiki) (an American in the Front Lines) (MeFi 2004) (MeFi 2005) (Frank Hurley Photos) (more photos)

Last year's armistice day was the last (MeFi) for Alfred Anderson, the final survivor of the Christmas Truce. 109 years old. RIP.

This year is the first of many in which I haven't been able to participate in Veteran's Day ceremonies. Offers to help seem to miss the right ears, despite the lack of buglers which, I imagine, is even greater abroad.
posted by honest knave at 3:38 PM on November 11, 2006

This is fantastic. Makes your imagination fly on what other types of documentaries could be done. The "Ken Burns filter".. hmmmm .. is there an "Ken Burns audio filter"? Narrate your script and have it sound like a truck driver.
posted by stbalbach at 3:38 PM on November 11, 2006

Nice links, esp. the Early Aviation Image Archive. Thanks!

One lesser-known American ace was lone wolf Frank Luke, Jr.^, who flew combat missions for only two months before he was killed. The top American ace, Eddie Rickenbacker^ had 26 victories in six months at the Front: he survived two wars and went on to become President of Eastern Airlines. Both were awarded the Medal of Honor.
posted by cenoxo at 4:14 PM on November 11, 2006

Rosebud (the image archive guy) is an acquaintance of mine from another online community, that centered around the early MMORPG IEN's Dawn of Aces (or maybe Flyboys, currently). That community has a very high percentage of Canadian and Australian participants, of which I think Rosie is Canuck.

Honest knave, sorry to hear yr sittin' it out. consider going out to your porch and blwin' true anyway.

(I am surprised to be the sole 11/11 poster, I gotta admit. Bring the poppies!)
posted by mwhybark at 6:51 PM on November 11, 2006

Beautifully done - thank you.
posted by speug at 8:36 PM on November 11, 2006

This is great stuff. The Lanoe Hawker story has always impressed me - picture of him winning his VC with home-made obliquely fiing Lewis gun here.

Fantastic post, thanks.
posted by greycap at 12:41 AM on November 12, 2006

b1tr0t, the death of Lanoe Hawker is covered in the section on the death of Oswald Boelcke...

I love anything WWI (though I haven't brought myself to watch Flyboys yet, so that statement is pretty untested) but , I can't help feeling that I've read this stuff all before. Even the way the information is presented, the word choices, seems a little recycled.

In fact, it sort of seems like most of this was covered in the (HEFTY) manual of the aforementioned Dynamix Red Baron flight sim.

And no section on Ernst Udet?

Still, I imagine I'll put this on my ipod anyway.
posted by nathancaswell at 8:53 AM on November 12, 2006

nathan, Flyboys was better than I thought it would be, although the filmmakers inadvisably chose to present all the German fighters except for one as bright-red Fokker triplanes. The flying stuff is really great, though, and worth seeing on a big screen.

You can put YouTube content onto a video iPod? How? That's aewsome!
posted by mwhybark at 11:37 AM on November 12, 2006

Use keepvid to download it (rename it to a .flv file) and then convert it from .flv to .mp4 or h.264 with the marvelous isquint. I'm sure there probably is a comparable PC utility.

I'm sure it's only a matter of time until I see Flyboys, I'm just a little jealous whenever someone other than me gets to make a WWI movie.
posted by nathancaswell at 8:38 AM on November 14, 2006

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