Almost in breadth and depth of a documentary, this movie depicts an auto race during the 70s on the world's hardest endurance course: Le Mans in France. The race goes over 24 hours on 13.4 kilometers of cordoned country road. Every few hours the two drivers per car alternate - but it's still a challenge for concentration and material. In the focus is the duel between the German Stahler in Ferrari 512LM and the American Delaney in Gulf Team Porsche 917. Delaney is under extraordinary pressure, because the year before he caused a severe accident, in which his friend Lisa's husband was killed.Written by
Tom Zoerner <Tom.Zoerner@informatik.uni-erlangen.de>
The working title of the film was 24 Hours of Le Mans. See more »
The 911 that Steve McQueen's character is driving around Le Mans and the racecourse in the beginning has a Stuttgart license plate (home of the Porsche company). However, the car is the type equipped for the U.S. market (front turn signals that act as driving lights, different headlights, red rear turn signals), and the license plate has no seal from the registration office. See more »
In parts this is classic cool 70s cinema. Widescreen jazz infused. In other parts it's down and dirty trackside racing. Never quite a documentary, but close enough to the action for anyone interested in motor racing. Le Mans is a fascinating race and this is every bit the love letter to it. Dialogue is sparse, McQueen is quiet and brooding. The plot is simple, although could've been a bit more engaging. It's about the racing though, pure and simple and with several sequences that are nothing short of staggering cinematic brilliance, it can be forgiven for any inadequacies elsewhere. With watching racing, it's as much about what's happening off the track, the strategy, the politics and it's exactly the same with this film, the production fraught with issues and squabbles, the trivia section on IMDB is riveting!
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