A highly speculative thriller, The Hindenburg depicts a conspiracy leading to the destruction of the airship. In reality, while the Zeppelins were certainly used as a propaganda symbol by the Third Reich, and anti-Nazi forces might have had the motivation for sabotage, the theory of sabotage was investigated at the time, and no firm evidence for such sabotage was ever put forward. The possibility of Boerth's (i.e. Spehl's) deliberate sabotage is one theory of the fire that had been the subject of Mooney's book, published around the time of the film's development. It has never been proven definitively, and most airship experts tend to discredit this theory.
As disaster movies go, this one's pretty weak. It can't seem to really decide if it's a mystery centered on who's trying to blow up the airship or if it's a more typical disaster movie ... kind of like a soap opera in the sky with a host of colourful characters heading up to a disaster. Because it spends half it's time in each mode, after 2 hours both plot lines still feel unforgivably sketchy. Where the film really goes wrong is in the last half hour. Dropping into black and white for the explosion itself, presumably to match the famous newsreel footage, is a serious mistake. The action is chaotically staged, and in black and white, it's even harder…