6.6/10
4,979
27 user 21 critic

The Great Waldo Pepper (1975)

A biplane pilot who had missed flying in WWI takes up barnstorming and later a movie career in his quest for the glory he had missed, eventually getting a chance to prove himself in a film ... See full summary »

Director:

George Roy Hill

Writers:

George Roy Hill (story), William Goldman (screenplay)
Reviews

Watch Now

From $3.99 on Prime Video

ON DISC

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

The Hot Rock (1972)
Certificate: GP Action | Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Dortmunder and his pals plan to steal a huge diamond from a museum. But this turns out to be only the first time they have to steal it...

Director: Peter Yates
Stars: Robert Redford, George Segal, Ron Leibman
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

A rodeo star past his prime steals his company's horse and rides into the desert, with a feisty reporter accompanying him.

Director: Sydney Pollack
Stars: Robert Redford, Jane Fonda, Valerie Perrine
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

A story of two motorcycle racers, the inept, unsuspecting Little Fauss (Michael J. Pollard) and the opportunistic, womanizing Halsey Knox (Redford).

Director: Sidney J. Furie
Stars: Robert Redford, Michael J. Pollard, Lauren Hutton
The Candidate (1972)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Bill McKay is a candidate for the U.S. Senate from California. He has no hope of winning, so he is willing to tweak the establishment.

Director: Michael Ritchie
Stars: Robert Redford, Peter Boyle, Melvyn Douglas
Brubaker (1980)
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

The new warden of a small prison farm in Arkansas tries to clean it up of corruption after initially posing as an inmate.

Director: Stuart Rosenberg
Stars: Robert Redford, Yaphet Kotto, Morgan Freeman
Legal Eagles (1986)
Comedy | Crime | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

A New York district attorney works and flirts with his adversary and her kooky artist client, who is on trial for a murder she didn't commit.

Director: Ivan Reitman
Stars: Robert Redford, Debra Winger, Daryl Hannah
Certificate: M/PG Drama | Sport
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Quietly cocky Robert Redford joins U.S. ski team as downhill racer and clashes with the team's coach, played by Gene Hackman. Lots of good skiing action leading to an exciting climax.

Director: Michael Ritchie
Stars: Robert Redford, Gene Hackman, Camilla Sparv
Certificate: M Drama | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

In 1909, when young Paiute Indian Willie Boy returns to his California reservation to be with Lola, whose father disapproves of him, a killing in self defense takes place, triggering a massive man hunt for Willie.

Director: Abraham Polonsky
Stars: Robert Redford, Katharine Ross, Robert Blake
Comedy | Drama | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A man named Billy Pilgrim tells the story of how he became unstuck in time and was abducted by aliens.

Director: George Roy Hill
Stars: Michael Sacks, Ron Leibman, Eugene Roche
Havana I (1990)
Drama | Romance | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

In 1950s Cuba, a professional gambler falls for a woman heavily involved in the revolution movement.

Director: Sydney Pollack
Stars: Robert Redford, Lena Olin, Alan Arkin
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A Midwesterner becomes fascinated with his nouveau riche neighbor, who obsesses over his lost love.

Director: Jack Clayton
Stars: Robert Redford, Mia Farrow, Bruce Dern
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Two disparate people have a wonderful romance, but their political views and convictions drive them apart.

Director: Sydney Pollack
Stars: Barbra Streisand, Robert Redford, Bradford Dillman
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Robert Redford ... Waldo Pepper
Bo Svenson ... Axel Olsson
Bo Brundin ... Ernst Kessler
Susan Sarandon ... Mary Beth
Geoffrey Lewis ... Newt
Edward Herrmann ... Ezra Stiles
Philip Bruns ... Dillhoefer
Roderick Cook Roderick Cook ... Werfel
Kelly Jean Peters ... Patsy
Margot Kidder ... Maude
Scott Newman Scott Newman ... Duke
James S. Appleby James S. Appleby ... Ace
Patrick W. Henderson Jr. Patrick W. Henderson Jr. ... Scooter
James N. Harrell James N. Harrell ... Farmer (as James Harrell)
Elma Aicklen Elma Aicklen ... Farmer's Wife
Edit

Storyline

A biplane pilot who had missed flying in WWI takes up barnstorming and later a movie career in his quest for the glory he had missed, eventually getting a chance to prove himself in a film depicting the dogfights in the Great War. Written by Keith Loh <loh@sfu.ca>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The Second Greatest Flyer in the World. See more »

Genres:

Adventure | Drama

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

13 March 1975 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Tollkühne Flieger See more »

Edit

Box Office

Gross USA:

$20,642,922
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Patti D'Arbanville was considered for the role of Mary Beth before Susan Sarandon was cast. See more »

Goofs

Following the scene of Waldo's initial wing walk, there is an aerial view of four planes flying but there are five plane shadows on the ground. The fifth shadow is of the camera plane. See more »

Quotes

Axel Olsson: Guess who's still alive... ME!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Jeopardy!: Episode #26.183 (2010) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
The word "great" also describes the movie
12 January 2003 | by RalphoSee all my reviews

This movie has special significance for me because I first saw it as a

teenager. Yet it holds up as a great movie for me 28 years after it was

made (unlike some others I could name).

I like Robert Redford in almost anything, and he's at his best here as

a barnstorming pilot in the 1920s who pretends to have seen more action

in World War One than he did. He made me feel for the character when he

said, "It should have been me" after rival flyer Axel Olsen exposed him

as a "four-flusher" for claiming he was a key figure in a famous battle.

Pepper finally gets his chance to go up against the German World War One

ace Ernst Kessler (perhaps loosely based on the real German ace Ernst

Udet) as a stunt pilot in a movie crew.

The dialogue scenes between Pepper and Kessler leading up to the

climactic dogfight are the best part of the movie, even though Kessler's

lines seemed to be written more in the interest of serving the plot than

in serving the character.

The idea that Kessler was a man who only felt at home in the air, for

whom nothing worked out well on the ground, resonated with me, as it did

with Pepper, who felt the same way.

In closing, I'd like to mention the beginning of the movie when Waldo

Pepper lands at a small town in Iowa to offer airplane rides. He

promises a free ride at the end of the day to a boy named Scooter if he

will tote a 5-gallon gas can back and forth from the filling station to

keep Pepper's plane fueled.

The song that plays over the opening credits during this sequence has

stuck with me for 28 years. I heard it again in 1992 while attending a

boot camp graduation ceremony at the Great Lakes Naval Recruit Training

Command and remembered it from the movie. I don't know the name of it,

but I love that song.

Anyway, at the end of the day Scooter asks for his free ride and Pepper

says he only promised that to get him to haul gas. He never takes kids

for rides. Whether the character is kidding or not isn't clear, but it

certainly seems that Scooter (and his dog) get the best ride of the day.

That sequence establishes Pepper as a decent, if somewhat slippery

character and gets the m


4 of 6 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 27 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Action and Adventure Titles With Prime Video

Explore popular action and adventure titles available to stream with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed