Hoping to push Britain to the forefront of aviation, a London publisher organizes an international air race across the English Channel, but must contend with two entrants vying for his daughter, as well as national rivalries and cheating.
In the infancy of aviation in 1910, 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 subplots as the flyers jockey for position and the affections of various women.Written by
John Vogel <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Orvil Newton (Stuart Whitman) was probably named after inventor Orville Wright, who helped build the first airplane, and scientist Sir Isaac Newton, who made discoveries regarding gravity. See more »
As Ware-Armitage manoeuvres his way back in to the seat after shooing the bird by throwing a bottle at it, he jiggles the airplane controls forward and backward considerably. However, there is no change to the plane's flight path. See more »
The Neanderthal Man:
[watches a gull flying over a beach]
Ever since man started to think, he's wanted to fly. But flying was strictly for the birds.
The Neanderthal Man:
[flapping his arms enthusiastically, he leaps from a sandy bluff and falls onto the beach below]
And continued to be so for thousands of years.
[in ancient Greece, a man wearing makeshift wings is forced at swordpoint off a temple roof]
Man, eternally optimistic, kept trying.
[...] See more »
The 20th Century Fox logo appears on the screen of an early 20th-century movie theater, surrounded by a safety curtain featuring advertisements typical of the era, as the studio fanfare is played by a small ensemble of piano, drums and horn - typical for the movie theaters of the 1910s. The first few scenes in the prologue appear in black-and-white on the screen, until the depiction of Count Emilio Ponticelli's pioneering flight, during which the image expands to fill the modern screen and changes to color, followed by the opening credit sequence. See more »
Ride of the Valkyries
Written by Richard Wagner
Heard when Von Holstein is trying to control the motorcycle from the side car See more »
Slapstick on an airy level
Few films there are ineed that I would be willing to pay a lot to have on DVD, but this certainly is!
In my book it rates with Tati's best, and he's tops!
The idea of making a film about aircraft was not new, I guess, but to do it such manner is still unique! Who would make a film
about an air-race between London and Paris, and do it as a comedy, with almost perfect dialogue, details and acting, but the British?
A number of vintage aircraft (circa 1909) were repaired/constructed
and flown for the flight sequencies, from the minuscle Demoiselle (the replica too small to have a male pilot!) via big, boxkite-like Cody's, inspired by Farmans to the Antoinette, which was 100% original!
As in any slapstick film there are villains (Terry Thomas, and Eric Sykes), pompous Germans, elegant Italians, flirting Frenchmen and the honest guy, of course!
Liking both British humour and aircraft, plus the good acting, the clever and exciting cinematography, and the excellent directing from Mr Annikin I can't but smile!
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