Pearl Harbor

The article, What Really Happened, was written by Robert Sullivan and published in the
June 4, 2001 issue of Time Magazine. It is an analysis of just how true to the facts the
recently released movie Pearl Harbor really was. The article attempts to prove its thesis
that while the movie does get some of the facts about Pearl Harbor right it gets too many
wrong to paint a cleat picture of the attack in the end. It tries to prove this by giving a few
examples of both small and large inaccuacies that kept the movie from giving a full view of
the attack and its effect on the nation. It also tries to show that the movie distorts the facts
of the attack on the base by adding in a common plot in war movies to help them sell to
the general public known as the love story. It argues that the story only helps to draw
away from the action of the attack and make the viewer less aware of the facts of the
attack. By using these two arguments, the author successfully proves that Pearl Harbor,
although generally accurate, does not provide a clear picture of the attack or the political
The articlefirst tries to show how the movie gave a somewhat false picture of the
attack and the events leading up to it by providing examples of small innaccuacies which
hurt the true picture of the attack. Thefirst example it provides in showing this point is the
point in the movie when Japanese Admiral Isoroku declared that his intention on the
attack on Pearl Harbor was to "annihilate their Pacific Fleet with a single attack". The
truth was that Japan actually intented to just discourage the Americans and show them
that Japan was a force. It also aruged that the movie shows top United States officials as
ignoring the bomb plot message of Spet. 24 was ignored by top military brass. It was, in
fact, not. The officials just did not think that the Japanese would really go that far out of


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