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 French entry in the race, flown by the character Pierre Dubois, is a replica of the "Demoiselle", designed by the Brazilian expatriate Alberto Santos Dumont, who had been believed by the French to be the first to fly a powered aircraft, until Wilbur Wright & Orville Wright's demonstrations in 1908. The replica builders were faithful in constructing the Demoiselle, but no one could get it to leave the ground until it was discovered that Dumont had been a very small man who weighed only 85 pounds. A female pilot Joan Hughes was hired. She successfully flew the plane throughout the filming. See more »
When Orvil and Patricia stop for a bite to eat in the cafe she asks about the type of aeroplane he flies. He says that it's a Curtiss with an Anzani engine. In fact, his aeroplane is a Bristol Boxkite which itself was a British derivative of the French Farman biplane of 1909. See more »
For the major roles, caricatures of the main cast drawn by Ronald Searle are seen on screen with the name of performer and the character, after which each screen of credits has a drawing by Searle, based on the theme of the film. See more »
I think everyone has a few old movies stashed away in their brains that for some reason or another are a part of their lives. Our personal soundtrack if you will. This film is one of mine. I know I saw it at a drive-in when it came out but can't recall which one. My older brother still recalls this one fondly also. It was gut busting funny at the time but hasn't aged that well due to the general public's far more sophisticated mindset these days. But it's still funny. Anyone who is a fan of flying or the history of traditional European nationalistic rivalry will still howl at this clever and at times very sharp satire. We see some of the attitudes that would help fuel the violent world wars that would erupt soon after 1910. The vintage aircraft, some authentic, some not, are sure to excite aircraft fans. The footage of the genuine planes actually flying across the English countryside is genuinely MAGNIFICENT. Many running gags through the length of the movie. My favorite is the obvious one...the redhead. I caught this on our PBS station just last night and as always I was hooked again and had to watch till two in the morning. There's something about most English movies from the 60's that is just magical. Even the bad ones like "Casino Royale" are still fascinating to watch. Great international casts, clever scripts, funny situations, sight gags...whole packages. Fun Movies, plain and simple. "Those Magnificent Men..." isn't a great film or even a great comedy. But it's still a genuine Fun Movie and well worth at least a rental fee. Now that I've seen it again for the zillonth time my brother and I will be talking about it and laughing out butts off the next time I see him. For us it's one of those kind of movies.
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