Several misfits decide to restore a PBY flying boat and fly to a place where they can enjoy total freedom but a few obstacles hamper their plans.


Alan Myerson


David S. Ward
Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Mel Stewart ... Black Man in Jail
Donald Sutherland ... Jesse Veldini
Howard Hesseman ... Frank Veldin
Morgan Upton ... Bill the Police Captain
Peter Boyle ... Eagle Thornberry
Jessica Myerson ... Savage Rose
Beans Morocco Beans Morocco ... Rocky (as Dan Barrows)
John Savage ... The Kid
Jane Fonda ... Iris Caine
Nancy Fish ... Pool Hall Waitress
Roger Bowen ... Fire Commissioner Francis
Garry Goodrow Garry Goodrow ... Duval Jax
Lynette Bernay Lynette Bernay ... Bar Waitress
Richard Schaal ... Mel the Zoo Official
Edward Greenberg Edward Greenberg ... Rookie Cop


A group of misfits decide to leave for a place that they can all be free. Their mode of transportation is a PBY flying boat. The only problem is that the PBY needs a lot of work and they will need jobs to pay for the parts. When they find that they have only 10 days before the PBY is sold for scrap, they decide on borrowing the parts for their trip. Written by Tony Fontana <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


If you can't beat 'em ... drive 'em crazy! See more »


Comedy | Crime


PG | See all certifications »

Did You Know?


Actually filmed in 1971, shortly after Jane Fonda and Donald Sutherland had co-starred in the very different "Klute", but not released anywhere until 1973. Fonda and Sutherland, who were briefly a real-life romantic item around that time, were also involved in "The FTA Show", an entertainment touring towns in the US with military bases nearby; the show was a satirical event protesting the Vietnam war. Several other people connected with "Steelyard Blues" were also involved, notably actor Peter Boyle. See more »


During the scene at the airfield when Eagle is dressed as a soldier and is shooting arrows, he is heard saying "Up yours, Kraut!" but his lip movements clearly don't match the "up yours" part. See more »


Iris Caine: You could have waited five minutes. With him, even 30 seconds would have done it.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The Committee is in the opening cast list See more »

Alternate Versions

When originally broadcast on NBC in 1979, the film was retitled "The Final Crash". See more »


Referenced in Tales from the Script (2009) See more »


Theme from Steelyard Blues (They Let Me Drive Again)
Written by Nick Gravenites and Mike Bloomfield (as Michael Bloomfield)
See more »

User Reviews

Amateurish Attempt at a Caper Comedy
14 January 2010 | by jayraskin1See all my reviews

Given the people involved, it is hard to see why this movie should be so messed up and dull. The writer, David Ward, wrote the amazing caper film "The Sting" two years later, Jane Fonda had just won an Academy Award for Klute, and Donald Sutherland had just done excellent work in films like "Klute," "Start the Revolution Without Me," and "Kelly's Heroes." Plotwise, the movie is a caper tale, with a small gang of bumbling misfits planning a big heist. At the same time the movie wants to be hip satire, a series of comedy sketches of the type that the NBC television show "Saturday Night" would do so well two years later. The bad result is that the plot makes the comedy bits seem awkward and forced and the disconnected comedy bits destroy any kind of suspense that the heist might have. It is quite literally a movie that keeps smashing into itself, just as the cars in the cars in the demolition scenes run into each other.

The only real interest for me was watching Jane Fonda. Her "Iris Caine" is supposed to be a light hearted version of her dramatic Bree Daniels prostitute character in "Klute" Yet, one doesn't believe her for a moment. It is always Jane Fonda pretending to be a prostitute that we are watching. It is as terrible a performance as her performance in "Klute" was terrific. It would be a good lesson for acting teachers to run the two films together to show how the same actress in the same type of role can be great or pathetic. It suggests that actors are only as good as their writers and directors.

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Release Date:

9 February 1973 (Finland) See more »

Also Known As:

The Final Crash See more »


Box Office

Gross USA:

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Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono | Mono (Producers Sound Service)



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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