7.2/10
12,784
150 user 33 critic

The Great Race (1965)

Approved | | Action, Adventure, Comedy | 1 July 1965 (USA)
Trailer
2:51 | Trailer

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ON DISC
When a popular daredevil proposes an automobile race across three continents, his arch rival vows to beat him, while an ambitious female reporter has her own plans for victory.

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay) (as Arthur Ross), (original story) | 1 more credit »
Reviews
Popularity
946 ( 4,080)
Won 1 Oscar. Another 1 win & 14 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Professor Fate / Crown Prince Frederick Hoepnick
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Maximilian Meen
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Sheriff
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Baron's Guard (as Bill Bryant)
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Storyline

Professional daredevil and white-suited hero, The Great Leslie, convinces turn-of-the-century auto makers that a race from New York to Paris (westward across America, the Bering Straight and Russia) will help to promote automobile sales. Leslie's arch-rival, the mustached and black-attired Professor Fate vows to beat Leslie to the finish line in a car of Fate's own invention. The Blake Edwards style of slapstick and song originated with this movie. A dedication to Laurel and Hardy appears at the beginning of the film. Edwards' tribute to Stan and Ollie can be seen most clearly in the interaction between Professor Fate and his cohort Max, as well as in the operatic Pottsdorf pie fight. Written by Jeanne Baker <jbaker@erim.org>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The movie with 20,000-mile or one-million-laughs guarantee! See more »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

1 July 1965 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Blake Edwards' The Great Race  »

Box Office

Budget:

$12,000,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (DVD edition)

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)| (70 mm prints)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This movie is loosely based on an actual 1908 New York-to-Paris race. See more »

Goofs

When Professor Fate is fleeing from the "Indians" he turns on the smoke screen. In long shots the smoke can clearly be seen filling the car's interior. In close-up the car is smoke free. See more »

Quotes

Max: [stumbling about in a blinding snowstorm] Professor, where are you?
Professor Fate: Behind the rock!
Max: Behind which rock?
[trips over Professor Fate]
Professor Fate: This rock, you idiot!
See more »

Crazy Credits

The closing credits are three simulated 'magic lantern' slides. The first one reads "Our Cast of Characters", and the following two list the main cast. However, Jack Lemmon is only credited as Professor Fate and not for his second role as Crown Prince Hapnik. See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Cinema Snob: Billy the Kid vs. Dracula (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

The Beautiful Blue Danube
(uncredited)
Written by Johann Strauss
Performed at the Potzdorf Ball
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Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
One of the most underrated movies of all time.
19 January 2004 | by (Minnesota) – See all my reviews

I cannot believe that "The Great Race" did not make it on AFI's 100 Funniest Movies list (well, actually I CAN believe it, since those lists seem very messed up to me). In fact, it has not gotten nearly as much recognition as it deserves.

It is simply one of the funniest movies I have ever seen! The whole cast shines (especially Lemmon, who should have won an Oscar for Best Scene Stealer). Besides the great slapstick, there are a million subtle details that you don't notice unless you are really paying attention. This is why the movie is still great after several viewings: each time you watch it, you are bound to catch some little joke you didn't see before.

Everything about this movie cracks me up. The contrast in character between Tony Curtis and Jack Lemmon is just great, the chemistry between the different characters is great, the movie parodies are great, the sets are great, the slapstick is great, and the dialogue is great. Even the MUSIC is funny... every time that goofy theme music for Professor Fate starts playing, I start laughing.

If you haven't seen this, I highly suggest you rent it. Yes, it is long, but it is one of the few comedies I have seen that keeps up the laughs consistently... it never sags or has dull moments. It is downright hilarious from start to finish.

And to top it all off, it has some very cool cars.


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