Tora Tora Tora !! ( japanese signal meaing complete surprise has been achieved ) 1970 The film shows the japanese attack on pearl harbour in hawaii that began america's entry into the second world war . The harbour was anchoring the US pacific fleet and many battleships were sunk , thus sending a wave of euphoria among the invading japanese pilots . But as the chief of the japanese combined fleet Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto says at the end of the movie , american aircraft carriers escaped damage as they were not in the harbour and therefore all the japanese did was wake up a sleeping giant and infuriate him . For the era of aircraft carriers was beginning and that of battleships was coming to an end . However the japanese did achieve complete surprise and did a great deal of damage and killed many sailors . The movie shows how the americans were totally unready for war . The newly installed radar station on a mountain top at hawaii at first had no means to communicate to the main base if they detected anything on radar . Later they did get a phone but their warnings of an air fleet coming were dismissed . It was a sunday morning and no one wanted to be disturbed . They japanese had clearly chosen their timing of attack well . Actually the earlier part of the movie does show the americans having broken the japanese communication code and thus being able to read any message sent . And a colonel does feel that japan is hell bent on war on reading the messages . But the americans do not realise that japan will strike so deep in the middle of the pacific and feel the attack will come in asia in places like phillipines etc . When the attack starts , the photography of the fighter jets silhouetted against the rising run is most beautiful , the rising sun also being the flag of japan . The planes attack with torpedoes and bombs . Complete destruction or sinking is achieved of several warships and the yellow flames of the explosions take up the later part of the movie . The american warplanes are parked bunched together on their airfield and therefore make easy targets for the japanese bombers . The japanese bombers attack in two waves and if a third had been launched then the vast oil tankers of hawaii could have been hit and set afire with loss of all stored fuel . But the japanese commander refuses to allow a third strike fearing that american submarines many be searching for them . Actually the japanese fleet of aircraft carriers carrying the striking aircraft was out of detection of the americans for some time . There is of course the conspiracy theory that american president Roosevelt knew about the impending attack but allowed it to happen so that america could enter the war to protect democracy , but the movie does not show this as it sticks to the official version that america was caught by surprise . Acting and music and photography is excellent ; the japanese voices sound strident and martial compared to the relaxed americans , but the glaring problem of the version I saw was the lack of subtitles in english for japanese dialogues . So I could only make out what the japanese were saying , and the could see arguments where the pacifists counselling peace were outmaneuvered by the warmongers . Music is all guns booming and trumpets blaring and roll of drums . That's the way I like it , for I like to see war on the silver screen . Verdict---Good . Three and a half stars out of five .