Fire Birds

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Fire Birds, also known as Wings of the Apache in some countries, is a 1990 military action thriller film directed by David Green and starring Nicolas Cage, Tommy Lee Jones and Sean Young. A notable fact is that the movie’s production was assisted by the US military, and that parts of the movie were shot in Fort Hood.

The movie was a critical and commercial failure, having a 10% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, and making only $14 million out of a budget of $22 million.

Roger Ebert said that "It was tempting to say that I might have liked this movie more if I’d never seen Top Gun; but the fact is, if Top Gun had never been made, Fire Birds would still have seemed like a completely ordinary movie."


Jake Preston (Cage) is a US Army AH-1 Cobra pilot who takes part in a joint DEA-Army operation to take down Bisante, a South American drug cartel. All attempts at attacking the cartel’s compound have been foiled by mercenary Eric Stoller (Bert Rhine), who pilots a Scorpion attack helicopter.

Preston, who survived one such attack, was enlisted to take part in a training program for the Army’s new AH-64 Apache gunship with the help of his instructor, Brad Little (Jones). At the same time, Preston attempts to win back his ex-girlfriend and OH-58 Kiowa pilot Billie Guthrie (Young).

Why It Sucks

  1. Hilariously bad dialogue, complete with sexual innuendo and cheesy (or lame) one-liners.
  2. Hit-and-miss helicopter battle sequences. Despite the impressive production values (see above), sometimes they can be confusing because of the way they were edited and filmed.
  3. Terribly hammy acting, especially from Nicolas Cage.
  4. Uninspired soundtrack courtesy of David Newman.
  5. Extremely laughable and paper-thin storyline.

External links