Scene Of The Crime: Pearl Harbor


In which Rafe wins The Battle Of Britain single handed

Michael Bay’s bloated epic of America’s rude awakening by the original axis of evil is guilty of many crimes. However, the most grievous scene of the crime is in jolly old England. Rafe (Ben Affleck) has enlisted in the Eagle Squadron, an RAF unit made up of yanks but commanded by a stiff upper lipped plucky Brit (Nicholas Farrell). All very admirable, you might think. Trouble is, the beleagured Brits treat Rafe as if he is Captain America himself, come to destroy Adolph’s gang with the shining shield of truth, justice and the American way. “Are all yanks as anxious to die as you?” asks his awed skipper (you can tell he’s awed, his top lip quivers 2mm). “Not anxious to die sir,” Rafe replies, jaw clenched so tight he could crack Hitler’s other ball in the Albert Hall. “Just anxious to make a difference.”

Rafe sends many letters home to girlfriend Evelyn (Kate Beckinsale) in Hawaii, who reads them and writes back while hilariously perched on a rocky promontory as the surf pounds her – subtle, Mr Bay. He details how he had a beer with two RAF pilots one day, then the next they were gone. They probably just couldn’t stand your bombast, Rafe.

Even in the midst of aerial combat, Rafe can’t shut up. He constantly blathers away, like a Tennessee hayseed on his X-box: “Got one!” “Hammer down!” “I got another one!” This is WWII guys, not the trench run in Star Wars. Rafe, flying in the face of historical fact, probably has more kills notched up on his Spitfire fuselage than the entire score of the real Eagle squadron. That’s probably because he has a seemingly endless supply of ammunition.

Amazingly, he survives his plane being shot to pieces and crashing nose first into “the drink”. Must be all the hot air he is full of. Rafe, Pearl Harbor sucked, and so do you.


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