Alec Baldwin playing Doolittle was a little offensive because Alec as and actor and liberal...far left Liberal, could never understand a man like Doolittle. During President Clinton's impeachment proceedings Alec Baldwin advocated the stoning of Henry Hyde and his family, all that for doing Henry doing his job!
I didn't think that the movie was harsh at all with Admiral Kimmel.
The movie to me, didn't make any judgements about him at all.
It appeared to me more that Kimmel was a victim of timing, poor communication and following orders to transfer more ships to the Atlantic. Can't see how this makes Kimmel look like he was the one responsible for Pearl Harbor and the poor response to the attack. I felt the way the movie handled the miss communication, problems of code breaking etc, was pretty good. So many things happened to conspire and prevent the US from being ready for the Japanese attack, not any one person seems to have made THE big mistake. If only we had known more about radar...etc. If we had satellite tracking...you name it, there are many things that were seemingly unavoidable. We as a nation were complacent.
All movies take liberties with the exact truth of events. I felt that as a mere mortal observer, the movie did a good job of putting the viewer into the action and horror of December 7, 1941.
As a young child growing up, my Grandfather was a member of the VFW. I never could understand the big deal about Pearl Harbor then. As I grew up I began to read and become more interested in my American History, and realized what Pearl Harbor meant to us. The movie for me, helped me put a picture in my head about the events. I know this picture isn't exact, but it does communicate the absolute horror of the events of that day and help me see and understand much more what I know to be the truth about Pearl Harbor.
IF the movie causes any interest in any young people it has served a great purpose.