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Scorsese in his biopic deliberately called the movie The Aviator. This was because the director believed that Hughes was a great pioneer in aviation. The movie accurately shows that Hughes was a lifelong lover of aviation and engineering. He had taken flying lessons while still a young man and was a very good pilot. In the motion picture Hughes is shown as a dare-devil and someone who would not hesitate to undertake anything dangerous. The Texan was indeed a dare-devil and he was a fearless flyer. He survived four serious crashes and was badly burned on one occasion. Hughes was also famed as a round the world aviator and he broke several world records. The Texan at one time held the record for the fastest time to fly around the globe, that was briefly held by the legendary Charles Lindbergh. The producer and businessman was also personally involved in the design and manufacture of new aeroplanes and this is something very well shown in the motion picture. Hughes also had a controlling share in the TWA airline and was instrumental in the development of the modern airliner. The multi-millionaire founded the Hughes Aircraft Company, and this was very important in the development of a great many important technologies. The movie also shows his interest in flying boats and his design for the Spruce Goose, the largest seaplane of all time and these were all true <ref>Barlett, p 245</ref>. Scorsese captures the importance of aviation in the life of Hughes and his contribution to the history of flight. Many have praised the movie for reminding the world that the subject of the biopic was a great figure in the history of aviation.
==Hughes and his mental health==
In one of the opening scenes of the movie the young Hughes is being bathed by his mother, and she is cautioning him of the many dangers that he faced in the world and warning him especially against dirt. Hughes is portrayed as a rather eccentric character even in his heyday as an aviator and Hollywood mogul. The director and the script indicated that Hughes eccentric behaviour was a result of his upbringing and his growing mental instability that is apparent by the end of the movie. One theory is that Hughes problems was a result of syphilis, which was a sexually transmitted disease, and which often led to serous mental health issues. Many have rejected this theory. It does seem that Hughes did have OCD and was obsessed with dirt and cleanliness. This is shown very well when some government agents raided his Hollywood home and Hughes is panicked by the idea that they are bringing germs into his home. His OCD became worse as it was untreated, and he also became dependent on painkillers after his various crashes. Scorsese’s movie does represent the variety of mental health issues that Hughes experienced but not their complex origins and causes. The 2004 motion picture was heavily criticised for not referencing the long physical and mental decline of Hughes. In later life he became a recluse in Las Vega and lived in appalling conditions and he only had his hair and nails cut once a year <ref> Meneghetti, Michael. "Feeling Yourself Disintegrate: The Aviator as History." Canadian Journal of Film Studies 20, no. 1 (2011): 2-19 </ref>. The man who was one of the richest men in America became petrified of germs
.. However, Scorsese does allude to Hughes mental deterioration in the final scene when the Texan has a breakdown after seeing two men in germ-suits.
[[File: Hughes One.jpg|200px|thumb|left| Howard Hughes c1940]]
==The Congressional Hearing and Hughes==
Hughes often had legal troubles and at one point was before the courts over a fatal car accident in the 1930s. The movie climaxes in 1947 when Hughes is forced to testify before the Senate, to defend himself against accusations that he had wasted government money during the war, that had been given to him for the production of the H4 Hercules Flying Boat and that the plane was not airworthy. The motion picture suggests that a rival of Hughes had bribed Senator Owen Brewster, to bring the charges against him as part of a vendetta. Just as in the motion picture the Texan millionaire was forced to testify before Congress, which was a major news story at the time. In one of the final scenes Hughes is shown flying the H4 seaplane and thereby proving that he had made a plane that could be used by the American air force and that he had not wasted government money<ref>Poyntz, S. " The way of the future" probing The Aviator for historical understanding:. Celluloid blackboard: Teaching history with film (2007), p.41 </ref>. In reality, the hearing into Hughes alleged misuse of funds was much more complex . Some have claimed that the Texan fabricated the story that a business rival had bribed the Senator, investigating Hughes. This was part of a clever strategy in order to get out of his legal troubles. The Texan was never charged with wasting government money and the investigation was soon dropped. However, there are lingering suspicions about Hughes business activities. The movie does not mention the Texan’s role as a philanthropist and that he founded the world-renowned Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) which has developed many pioneering medications and treatments. <ref> McCook, A. (2005). What the aviator left out: visionary Howard Hughes Medical Institute had trouble taking off in its early days. The Scientist, 19(2), 52-53 </ref>.