VIDEO: Messerschmitts battle Spitfires in glorious colour, but is it real or special effects?

An interesting video here of two Messerschmitts battling with Spitfires. The mystery is whether this is real footage that has been re-coloured or whether it is an enthusiastic fan creating magic using the latest animation tools.

What do you think?

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23 Responses to VIDEO: Messerschmitts battle Spitfires in glorious colour, but is it real or special effects?

  1. Andrew 17 December, 2008 at 3:09 am #

    Certainly the sounds of Merlin engines would have to be dubbed and it would be a very brave pilot who would leapfrog a 109 in order to shoot another, so in my opinion a computer generated video, but pretty good.

  2. Steve Mitchell 17 December, 2008 at 6:51 pm #

    Perhaps somebody can compare the coast line – with the cliff constantly having clliff falls and the Eurotunnel spoil being dumped in that area, the shoreline should look quite different now from 1940

  3. Jamie Millar 18 December, 2008 at 1:38 am #

    To good to be true, I think the quality is far to good to be a re-paint. And then you have to wonder why the second spit would opt to go for the lead 109, placing himself in direct fire of the second, well its camera at least. Top marks for effort but a fake every day of my week.

  4. Nick Szirbik 18 December, 2008 at 10:33 am #

    I have seen this short video as part of a documentary on the History Channel (or Discovery?), where they debated what was the best (109 or Spit – and it was sort of a draw). Of course it is a digital reconstruction (a very good one). The commentary to the video was that the 109Emil could slightly outperform the Spit II at low altitude, but it was badly limited by its very small range (in September 40). Of course no sane fighter jock will put himself between the leader and the wingman (who actually just has to push the fire button – maybe its guns are jammed, I do not understand German so well) but then, how can you “film” it from a cockpit?

  5. Filip Van Biervliet 18 December, 2008 at 11:29 am #

    At sec 25 the pilot crosses the coastline, pulls up and banks to the left. At sec 28 when the nose drops again , the shore is visible at the left side, it should be the opposite. This is fake.

  6. David Kaminski-Morrow 18 December, 2008 at 1:56 pm #

    Slow the footage down and you can clearly see the Spitfire’s propeller is probably four-bladed – which almost certainly makes it a later mark than the variants flying in the Battle of Britain. In which case I’d find it hard to believe this is a genuine dogfight over Dover.

  7. Will Alibrandi 18 December, 2008 at 3:54 pm #

    Odd that the lead 109 gets jumped and his wingman never returns fire – he then bugs out instead of covering a retreat. An entertaining fake, surely computer generated.

  8. Keith Attfield 18 December, 2008 at 7:34 pm #

    I hope I can help with this mystery…..
    I used to work at Duxford for the Imperial War Museum.
    During the 90′s the museum had a huge 50 seat flight simulator commisioned called the Dynamic Flight Sim.
    There were 3 rides that you could go on depending on your luck the day you turned up was showing a certain flight sim.
    This one of the dogfight was filmed for the museum and was flown by the Old Flying Machine Co and two of the pilots were non other that Ray and Mark Hanna. A lot of the flying that Ray did was always argued that it was computer generated but I was told that most of if was actual flying (just like when he flew his spit under the bridge for the tv series “a Piece of Cake”)
    Does anyone else remember going on the sim at Duxford….

  9. David Kaminski-Morrow 19 December, 2008 at 12:13 am #

    No sign of a propeller in front of the camera either…

  10. Rich Duncan 19 December, 2008 at 8:00 am #

    The video is a recreation of history not original footage – probably for some historical movie or possibly a TV history show. The “German Bf-109′s” are actually CASA built post war HA1112 airplanes. From the video footage (check @ about 55 seconds into the video) it is clear that the engine exhausts on the “German” airplanes are high up on the engine cowling – because they are CASA built HA1112′s which used the Rolls-Royce Merlin engines not the DB600 series that the original Bf-109 used. Good footage but – not real BoB footage.

  11. LuftwaffeKraut 19 December, 2008 at 4:08 pm #

    Superbly done, but still a fake — not only for the various reasons stated above, but also because the talk of the German pilots is not realistic (nor is their behavior regarding air combat tactics).

    Just as an example, at the end of the clip, the wingman simply and very matter-of-factly states that he’s running out of fuel and returns home. Would you do that in such a situation, with your wing leader going down and the other Spit still around?

    Also, I don’t recall any of the Luftwaffe’s fighters being equipped with a camera that would capture such lengthy clips. Maybe he couldn’t fire at the Spit because he had his guns replaced for cams. ;)

  12. p0l0nium 19 December, 2008 at 5:12 pm #

    They seem to be Merlin engined Bf109s! Their exhausts are at the TOP! and they don’t seem to have left-side air intakes.
    Also they lack tail-struts, which makes them not the predominant E variant from 1940. They could just about be “F”s but that would make a Dover dogfight on a summer day pretty unlikely since they didn’t arrive until Oct 1940.

  13. F Morelli 20 December, 2008 at 4:54 am #

    This shot was used in a “flight simulator” ride for the general public at the RAF Museum (where I went on it with my son) not admittedly with the German soundtrack , instead an English commentary. This was one of those cabin “simulators” used for joy rides at funfairs etc.

    It is 100% staged I am sure. The comments above are all valid.

  14. Dim 20 December, 2008 at 1:18 pm #

    If you’re that keen to sucker today’s kids, do at least pick a digital model of a Bf109 instead of a Hispano with a Merlin.

  15. Virgil Rusu 20 December, 2008 at 7:46 pm #

    This is for sure not a Battle of Britain fight: the Spitfire has two big radiators under the wings (not one small, for oil, and one big, for coolant, as in Mk.I and Mk. II), the 109 has no struts on the tailplane, so cannot be an Emil. What is stranger is that the exhaust pipes for the 109 seem to be placed high, Merlin style, I mean V12 style, not low, as appropriate for an inverted V12, like the german Deimler Benz.

    But of course is a fake! I actually enjoyed it.

  16. DJ 21 December, 2008 at 12:17 am #

    Fun movie but cgi.

    The imagery is not film at all, even cleaned up.

  17. AKR 21 December, 2008 at 3:56 pm #

    I know that bit of coast well. It is around Beachy Head and the Seven Sisters between Eastbourne and Brighton.

    An excellent fake, but fake never the less. What happened to the victory rolls?

  18. AdamB 21 December, 2008 at 5:20 pm #

    The location is Beachy Head and Seven Sisters in Sussex not Dover. This is the same loaction used in the Battle of Britain film. It looks recent to me, the Bell Tout tower seems to be in its modern location having been moved back from the cliff edge about 10 or 15 years ago. However the Beachy head light house doesent have the modern helcopter pad. The Spitfires have symetrical radiators so they are Mk IX or later. IMO a very clever CGI.

  19. Dave 22 December, 2008 at 1:19 pm #

    Most certainly a digital remake but a good one. The Me-109 is at least the F model so that rules out the Battle of Britain, the Spit looks like a MK IX with it’s radiators and 4 bladed prop and the 109 has white wing tips which I think is a feature of the Luftwaffe markings on Me-109′s on the Russian front. Entertaining though!

  20. PW119 23 December, 2008 at 11:20 pm #

    This footage was filmed for real in the early 1990s or late 1980s. The aircraft and pilots were provided by the OFMC at Duxford. The Hispano Buchons was used as the 109 and Spitfire IXs in place of earlier marks. The footage was then used for the “Showscan theme ride – dogfight”.

  21. Clive Reginald STOKES 24 December, 2008 at 4:32 pm #

    agree with Dave, also roundels on the MKIX spitfire are the older type.

  22. Jim The Eagle 29 December, 2008 at 4:14 pm #

    As a couple of people have said, it was filmed by the Old Flying Machine Company for a dynamic ride simulator at Duxford, it is absolutely not CGI, although the black smoke from the Spitfire may have been some sort of later add-on. Pretty sure it was filmed in 1993 when I was working there and that the cameraship may have been the T-33 that OFMC had then (hence no prop). One Spitfire is Mk IX MH434 and the ’109′ is Hispano Buchon G-BOML. As for unrealistic behaviour by the 109 pilots – it was for a 3 minute ride, and you can’t have the Germans winning!

  23. Butler01 5 December, 2010 at 11:36 pm #

    The footage was flimed from the OFMC T-33, N33VC. The Spitfire and Buchon were also from the OFMC, there was no CGI and no long lenses used the aircraft were in that close, we operated out of Lydd for the filming and it was for the Simulator at Duxford. Oh Happy Days………..

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