Based on a novel by the Sunday Times best-selling author, James Holland
Inspired by real people and events and based on the novel of the same name by the internationally acclaimed best-selling author James Holland, A Pair of Silver Wings is a deeply moving and thought-provoking story set to a backdrop of both the Second World War and fifty years on in 1995. Many of the themes are both universal and timeless: friendship, first love and loss, grief and how it is never too late to heal the wounds of the past.
It is one man’s journey: Edward Enderby is an idealistic young fighter pilot based in southern England in 1941, who then becomes caught up in the raging air battle for Malta and, later, the partisan war in Northern Italy. Half a century on, he returns to his wartime haunts on a quest fuelled by fear, hope and a search for redemption.
It can take a lifetime to heal the wounds of war…
This is the story of an ordinary man who, like so many of his generation, was caught up in the very extraordinary events of the Second World War. He is a man who has suffered terrible trauma; he has seen appalling things, has lost first, his greatest friend, and then the love of his life, the woman with whom he planned to spend the rest of his days. As a fighter pilot, he had flown on Malta and in Italy and later had fought with partisans in the mountains of the Apennines. By the war’s end, he was broken. At the time, he was still only twenty-three.
Returning home, Edward had tried to shut out those memories, and, like so many others, attempted to move forward and get on with his life. It never really worked; he could not replace what had been taken away.
At the school where Edward Enderby taught for over forty years, there were few who knew he’d once been a decorated fighter pilot during the war. It was not something he ever talked about – not even to his family. And for over half a century he had, for the most part, managed to put the memories of those years out of his mind. But fifty years on, he is alone – a widower – with a strained relationship with his only son, and a career behind him that has brought him respect but little affection.
Fifty years on, it is 1995, and Britain is commemorating VE Day in a bigger way than at any point since 1945. Edward’s old nightmares return. Through a series of evolving events, he is compelled to tread his old wartime haunts once more, look back into the past, confront his grief and try, somehow, to find some kind of redemption. His journey takes him first to Malta and then to Italy and in doing so, he comes face-to-face with the idealistic young man he once was, and the devastated and traumatised twenty-one year-old he was to become.
Following his experiences over the skies of England in 1941, through the dark days of the Second Great Siege of Malta in 1942 to the bitter partisan struggle in Italy, The film follows Edward’s two stories: his life during the Second World War and his contemporary life as an older man in 1995.
At its heart, this is a tragic romance. Most people have a best friend, most have a love of their lives. Edward has lost both and it is particularly the lost future with Carla, that he felt was his due after what he suffered in the war, that eats away at him.
A Pair of Silver Wings is a story of friendship, love and loss and the terrible legacy of war, exploring universal themes of grief and redemption, and one man’s quest to heal the scars from his past…