In the early days of the 20th century, a British Newspaper offers a prize for the winner of a cross channel air race which brings flyers from all over the world. There are many sub-plots as the flyers jockey for position and the affections of various women. Written by
John Vogel <email@example.com>
At approximately 1 hour & 25 minutes a board is seen listing 14 competitors. Number 1: Richard Mays. (Aircraft number 8) Number 2: Sir Percy Ware Armitage. (Aircraft number 12) Number 3: Orvil Newton. (Aircraft number 7) Number 4: Lieutnant Parsons. (Aircraft number 4) Number 5: Harry Popperwell. (Aircraft number 5) Number 6: Capt Rumpelstoss. (Aircraft number 11) Number 7: Mr Wallace. (Aircraft number unknown) Number 8: Charles Wade. (Aircraft number unknown) Number 9: Mr Yamamoto. (Aircraft number 1) Number 10: Count Emilio Ponticelli. (Aircraft number 2) Number 11: Henri Monteux. (Aircraft number unknown) Number 12: Pierre Dubois. (Aircraft number 9) Number 13: Mr Mac Dougall. (Aircraft number 6) Number 14: Harry Walton. (Aircraft number unknown) In only twice does the pilots number match the aircraft/race number. The four unknown pilots (Mr Wallace, Charles Wade, Henri Monteux & Harry Walton) must be the pilots of the four missing aircraft/race numbers (3, 10, 13 & 14) See more »
Newton supposedly loses his trousers after using his belt to repair a wing strut. It is impossible for trousers to fall off over boots. See more »
[Having helped Richard Mays return to the race]
I think I'll get one of those Muriel
I shouldn't Willie, you're near enough to your wings as it is.
See more »
Closing credits: Those Magnificent Men - and Women - were ... See more »
Set against an old-time air-race, this is a charming spoof of national characteristics.
Centred around a London-to-Paris air race early in the 1900's, this is a wonderful English comedy spoofing national characteristics! You know the sort of thing, the expansive American hero, the fair-playing Englishman, the great French lover, the emotional Italian count, the enigmatic Japanese, the humourless pomp-loving German, and so on.
The casting is interesting, for this light-hearted movie's principal roles are filled by actors who are far more familiar playing the heavy: Stuart Whitman, Sarah Miles, James Fox, Jean-Pierre Cassel, and Gert Frobe. And make no mistake, they are superb at it!
Offending no-one of any age, this movie plays out against the back-drop of the air race, with a fantastic array of primitive aircraft. It is fun and full of life, tripping along easily and smoothly from one delightful absurdity to another. The English have made this movie, and while they have considerable fun at the expense of the Frenchman and the German, they cannot resist poking the bulk of the fun at themselves. They do so by augmenting the cast with the shifty Englishman (Terry-Thomas), the confidence man (Tony Hancock), and the foreigner-distrusting representative of the upper crust (Robert Morley).
This movie is a must see for anyone with any pretense to a sense of humour!
23 of 27 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?