The news, as reported in Deadline Hollywood, that German-born director Roland Emmerich is slated to make a film about the Battle Of Midway has been met with some apprehension in certain quarters. Emmerich has created some solid hits, including “Stargate,” “Independence Day,” and “The Patriot.” However, a lot of his more recent content, including a splashy sequel to “Independence Day” have received a less than favorable reception.

‘Midway’ as a movie

The World War Ii Battle of Midway was actually the subject of a previous film that starred Henry Fonda and Charlton Heston during the 1970s. The movie proved popular with audiences but was unpopular with critics.

Midway is the perfect battle for an epic motion picture. The battle took place after hide and seek maneuvering between Japanese and American fleets during an attempt by the former to take the island base of Midway in the middle of the Pacific. The action featured spectacular air battles, epic courage and sacrifice, and a little luck that determined the outcome and turned the tide of war in the Pacific. With the success of “Dunkirk” it looks like that World War II is popular again at the movies.

Can Emmerich pull it off?

Roland Emmerich is almost without peer in his ability to put CGI spectacle on the big screen. His “Stargate” and “Independence Day” were great, crowd pleasing popcorn movies. His storytelling abilities have been a little hit or miss, however.

Many of his more recent movies have been less than popular because they lacked heart. “Independence Day: Resurgence” is a prime example.

On the other hand, Emmerich’s last foray into a history epic -- “The Patriot” starring Mel Gibson and the late Heath Ledger as Revolutionary War guerrilla fighters -- was a first-rate movie. On the other hand, the 2000 film did considerable violence to history, making Gibson’s character the most enlightened plantation owner in North America and exaggerating the British capacity for atrocity.

The source material for a Midway film is first-rate. Everything depends on execution -- that convergence of acting, directing, writing, and cinematography that can be the dividing line between a great film and one that is just so-so.

Above all, Emmerich should resist the temptation to embellish the historical facts of the battle. The reality of what happened, including the arrival of the dive bombers just as the Japanese air cover had been distracted chasing the torpedo bombers, is one of those too incredible for fiction situations.

The director should cast aside his ego and just let the story tell itself.

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