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* ObstructiveBureaucrat: Wallis encounters a few in the film's first act.

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* ObstructiveBureaucrat: Wallis encounters a few in the film's first act.act, because the RAF is short on bombers at the point in the war.



** [[StrawmanHasAPoint To be scrupulously fair to said civil servant]], [[JustifiedTrope the RAF didn't have many bombers to spare at that stage in the war.]]



** Referenced in ''[[Series/TheOfficeUK The Office]]'' (UK).

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** Referenced in ''[[Series/TheOfficeUK The Office]]'' (UK).''Series/TheOfficeUK''.

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A young Creator/PatrickMcGoohan has a bit part as a guard.

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* CasualDangerDialog: "Power lines." The film has them climb over them; in reality, some crews flew ''under'' them.

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* CasualDangerDialog: "Power lines." The film has them climb over them; in reality, some crews flew ''under'' them. This wasn't to show off; trying to climb too suddenly would cause a loss of speed, and hence increase in angle of attack, which would lead to the aircraft "mushing" into the lines. If there was space it was safer to go under.

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** In recent (as of 2020) screenings on British TV, the dog's name (and the subsequent codeword based on it) are skilfully edited out of the audio. At one point Gibson can be seen saying the real name while the words "my dog" are substituted on the soundtrack.


** {{Subverted}} by Wallis, who is too [[{{Adorkable}} artless]] to hide his feelings. The film shows him on the verge of tears on two occasions, once when the mission's [[spoiler: success]] is reported, and the second time in the above-mentioned conversation with Gibson.

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** {{Subverted}} by Wallis, who is too [[{{Adorkable}} artless]] artless to hide his feelings. The film shows him on the verge of tears on two occasions, once when the mission's [[spoiler: success]] is reported, and the second time in the above-mentioned conversation with Gibson.


* {{Adorkable}}: Barnes Wallis, whose nerdiness is nicely offset by his childlike earnestness and inability to hide how queasy he becomes in tense moments.


617 Squadron, the RAF unit tasked with all this, still exists and flies Tornadoes today.

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617 Squadron, the RAF unit tasked with all this, still exists and flies Tornadoes F-35 Lightnings today.


* [[spoiler: BlackDudeDiesFirst: Gibson's black dog with the [[NWordPrivileges problematic name]] is run-over half-way through the film, shortly before the crew start the mission. The dog is the only black character in the entire film.]]

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* [[spoiler: BlackDudeDiesFirst: Gibson's black dog with the [[NWordPrivileges problematic name]] [[spoiler: is run-over half-way through the film, shortly before the crew start the mission. The dog is the only black character in the entire film.]]

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* [[spoiler: BlackDudeDiesFirst: Gibson's black dog with the [[NWordPrivileges problematic name]] is run-over half-way through the film, shortly before the crew start the mission. The dog is the only black character in the entire film.]]


* [[BarBrawl Mess Room Brawl]]: While waiting for conditions to be perfect for the raid, 617 Sqdn members got teased a lot by the members of other squadrons at RAF Scampton. After Gibson allows them to let off steam, one of these occurs.

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* [[BarBrawl Mess Room Brawl]]: BarBrawl: A mess room brawl. While waiting for conditions to be perfect for the raid, 617 Sqdn members got teased a lot by the members of other squadrons at RAF Scampton. After Gibson allows them to let off steam, one of these occurs.


Notable for its influence on a little movie called ''[[Film/ANewHope Star Wars]]'': the trench run was heavily inspired by the climax of the film. Several lines of dialogue are actually re-used, nearly verbatim.

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Notable for its influence on a little movie called ''[[Film/ANewHope Star Wars]]'': the trench run was heavily inspired by the climax of the film. Several lines of dialogue are actually re-used, nearly verbatim.
verbatim. It's also known for having several clips used in the 1982 film version of Music/PinkFloyd's ''Music/TheWall''.

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* DatedHistory: The mission is portrayed as a great success, with a GiantWallOfWateryDoom washing away the Ruhr industry. In truth the operation had more success as a propaganda victory than on German war production, and many of those killed were Soviet forced laborers.


At the beginning of WW2, the great engineer (then not yet Sir) Barnes Wallis (played by [[Creator/MichaelRedgrave Redgrave]]) pointed out that bombs rarely did much damage to hardened military installations unless they hit them right on the button (and often not much even then). What you needed was a way of transmitting ALL of the bomb's energy into the target rather than spending most of it on the air. Barnes Wallis proposed that bombs should be designed so that they penetrated the ground AROUND the target rather than hitting it directly, and then went off UNDER it, causing a local earthquake and hole, into which the target would fall. The idea was brilliant and would have worked perfectly, but his initial proposal called for a bomb so large that no aircraft then in existence could carry it and the six-engined "Victory" bomber Wallis designed to do the job would have been little use for anything else and hideously expensive besides, so the Air Ministry were less than enthusiastic.

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At the beginning of WW2, [=WW2=], the great engineer (then not yet Sir) Barnes Wallis (played by [[Creator/MichaelRedgrave Redgrave]]) pointed out that bombs rarely did much damage to hardened military installations unless they hit them right on the button (and often not much even then). What you needed was a way of transmitting ALL of the bomb's energy into the target rather than spending most of it on the air. Barnes Wallis proposed that bombs should be designed so that they penetrated the ground AROUND the target rather than hitting it directly, and then went off UNDER it, causing a local earthquake and hole, into which the target would fall. The idea was brilliant and would have worked perfectly, but his initial proposal called for a bomb so large that no aircraft then in existence could carry it and the six-engined "Victory" bomber Wallis designed to do the job would have been little use for anything else and hideously expensive besides, so the Air Ministry were less than enthusiastic.


* MyGodWhatHaveIDone: Barnes is visibly shaken, in a very StiffUpperLip fashion, when he hears how many men were lost during the raid... although ''not'' the German civilians who perished when the dams burst. [[DeliberateValuesDissonance It was that sort of war]], and numerous British civilians were undoubtedly dying to German bombs that same night.
--> '''Wallis''': ''[voice unsteady]'' Fifty-six men. If I'd known it was going to be like this I'd never have started.

to:

* MyGodWhatHaveIDone: Barnes is visibly shaken, in a very StiffUpperLip fashion, shaken when he hears how many men were lost during the raid... although ''not'' the German civilians who perished when the dams burst. [[DeliberateValuesDissonance It was that sort of war]], and numerous British civilians were undoubtedly dying to German bombs that same night.
--> '''Wallis''': ''[voice unsteady]'' ''[almost tearfully]'' Fifty-six men. If I'd known it was going to be like this I'd never have started.



*** The letters he has to write, of course, are to the wives and parents of those men telling them of the death of their loved ones. He didn't [b]have[/b] to do it, especially not right at that moment, the War Office would inform them by telegram - but he wanted to ensure that the families got something more personal as soon as possible.
** {{Subverted}} by Wallis, who's depicted as someone who's too [[{{Adorkable}} artless]] to hide his feelings. He is shown to be on the verge of tears on two occasions, once when the mission's [[spoiler: success]] is reported, and the second time in the above-mentioned conversation with Gibson.

to:

*** The letters he has to write, of course, are to the wives and parents of those men telling them of the death of their loved ones. He didn't [b]have[/b] '''have''' to do it, especially not right at that moment, the War Office would inform them by telegram - but he wanted to ensure that the families got something more personal as soon as possible.
** {{Subverted}} by Wallis, who's depicted as someone who's who is too [[{{Adorkable}} artless]] to hide his feelings. He is shown to be The film shows him on the verge of tears on two occasions, once when the mission's [[spoiler: success]] is reported, and the second time in the above-mentioned conversation with Gibson.

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