Frank Capua is a rising star on the race circuit who dreams of winning the big one--the Indianapolis 500. But to get there he runs the risk of losing his wife Elora to his rival, Luther ...
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Frank Capua is a rising star on the race circuit who dreams of winning the big one--the Indianapolis 500. But to get there he runs the risk of losing his wife Elora to his rival, Luther Erding, and strains the relationship with his stepson.Written by
J A Ollinger <firstname.lastname@example.org>
This movie does not age well. Though Paul Newman's acting is very good, the same cannot be said of some supporting actors. Richard Thomas is unbearably bad as a kid who wants to emulate his dad—at one point he gets in the cockpit and just looks, well, retarded. Clu Gulager is a bad imitation of Smokey Yunick. The writers and director seem to have a vague idea what racing is about, but mostly they get it all wrong. This movie was made after John Frankenheimer's 1966 brilliant film Grand Prix. It utilizes many of the same camera and editing techniques and even the music is at times reminiscent of Maurice Jarre's utilizing a soft guitar for romantic moments, coupled with empty track shots, etc. etc. Winning saving grace is it's period racing shots and we can get a glimpse of how it was like at Indy in 1968. But the editing is really poor, some action shots are sped up (which just kills any serious car movie). In the sixties it was cool for a leading man to do a racing movie, then get into the real thing after the shooting wrapped. McQueen did it, James Gardner did it and Paul Newman did best by actually becoming a racing man's racer. All in all it's a pale imitation of Frankenheimer's Grand Prix, and I can't help thinking how the latter film might have been even better with Paul Newman starring.
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