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>
The Passat Ornithopter airplane in this movie was given to Cole Palen for promoting this movie. It can now be seen at the Old Rhinebeck Areodrome. See more »
The configuration of several aircraft changes from shot to shot. This includes the Bristol Boxkite which, in some scenes has two rudders and in others has three. The Antoinette is changed the most. In close ups it has thin "wing warping" wings. In others it has thick modern glider wings with ailerons with redundant support wires added. These changes occurred when it became clear that the accurate replicas of 1910 flying machines, originally built were not airworthy enough. Details are provided in Allen Wheeler's book "Building Aeroplanes for Those Magnificent Men." 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.
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Closing credits: Those Magnificent Men - and Women - were ... See more »
This was a fairly long but interesting story of an early 20th century airplane race taking place between London and Paris. The actual race only takes place for the last 45 minutes, and that's fun to watch. The terrain also is nice to view.
Before that, you get profiles of the competitors of the race. You really get the typical stereotypes of movies: the French men woo all the women; the Germans are make to look too militaristic and stupid; the English are portrayed as very stiff upper-lipped and the Italians are all too emotional, etc.
Stuart Whitman and James Fox both battle for Sarah Miles' affections and Terry Thomas has some funny lines as a villain.
I loved the airplanes in this film - really cool "flying machines," as they are labeled here. They came in all sizes and shapes. In the very beginning of the movie, they show actual footage of early flight failures and they are familiar but still fascinating. Interspiced in the actual footage are closeups of Red Skelton playing the part of some of those unsuccessful fliers. Since he had no lines, Skelton reminded me of some of the great silent film comedians.
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