Synopsis by Hal Erickson
Famed WW1 aviator Eddie Rickenbacker once more entered the public's consciousness during WW2 when, while serving as an Air Force officer, he and several other pilots crashed into the Pacific. While the world anxiously awaited news of his fate, Rickenbacker and a handful of survivors floated for 19 days in a tiny rubber raft. Captain Eddie recreates this incident, using it as a framework for a series of flashbacks in which Rickenbacker (Fred MacMurray) reminisces on the high points of his life. He is seen experimenting with aviation in his backyard, working in an auto factory to finance his earliest flights, and wooing and winning the lovely Adelaide (Lynn Bari). When America enters WW1, Rickenbacker immediately signs up, eventually shooting down more enemy planes than any other American aviator. Back in "the present", Rickenbacker and his comrades (including Lloyd Nolan and Richard Conte as Lt. Whittaker and Private Bartek) struggle to stay alive while awaiting rescue. Darryl Hickman plays Rickenbacker as a boy, while Charles Bickford portrays his father William. The huge supporting cast includes amusing unbilled contributions by Grady Sutton ("The schottische is my fav-or-ite dance!") and George Chandler.
war, aerial, barnstorming, courage, craziness, enemy, experiment, flashback, flying, Germany, life, mission [quest], Pacific-Ocean, patriotism