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Best and worst racing movies


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#201 MNRacer

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Posted 17 June 2010 - 04:57

[quote name='Jim Thurman' date='Jun 16 2010, 22:52' post='4420968']
Summed up nicely. If one took the photography and Maurice Jarre's score away, what is left?...really, what?

Well, the fantastic Michael Turner paintings created just for the film were always a plus for me, and the Saul Bass titles and intro sequence
were unforgettable...have we mentioned the sound editing?

Some of the non-racing scenes had merit...the episode at the Stoddard estate where "Scott" painfully lowers himself
into the old Lotus, and the accompanying push-start had some poignancy in my opinion.


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#202 CSquared

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Posted 17 June 2010 - 07:20

And while we're on Grand Prix, the movie created a cult of Monza banking preservationists who truly believe it was incredibly historic. Why?, because Sarti and Aron raced on it?;)

Wait a minute. Are you saying you don't think the Monza banking is historically significant or worthy of preservation?

#203 pertti_jarla

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Posted 17 June 2010 - 15:30

So, in my opinion, Grand Prix is just what Tink referenced above. Accurate racing scenes, but no where near a well scripted movie.


I love the film, but agree with this. The problem to me isn't just the rather lazy romantic subplots: I don't think Grand Prix is a very good deciption of the racing scene. We are shown too little of the workings of the team, nothing about the mechanics, the preparation of the cars, the teamwork during the race. I get the feeling that the writer hasn't studied his subject that deeply. In Grand Prix the F1 world consists of 1) the love life of the drivers and 2) the drivers driving in the actual races. One of the most frustrating scenes is when Toshiro Mifune starts introducing James Garner to his F1 ride for the first time...and the scene ends immediately. The relationship between the man and the machine is largely neglected. Maybe this is why the great scene with Bedford painfully mounting his old ride stands out.

The film has magical charm, even the romantic bits are nice in their way, but it could be much much better.

Edited by pertti_jarla, 17 June 2010 - 15:34.


#204 Jim Thurman

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Posted 17 June 2010 - 22:43

Wait a minute. Are you saying you don't think the Monza banking is historically significant or worthy of preservation?

Here we go :)...

I am saying that the Monza banking is not THAT historically signifigant. And I will lay odds that the majority of folks who feel fervently about it's preservation do not know the true history of the banking, or that of what preceeded it. Most also seem to be U.S. based which leads me to believe that the movie "Grand Prix", with it's stirring scenes, is what created their sentiments toward the banking.

That's what I'm saying.


#205 Jim Thurman

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Posted 17 June 2010 - 22:46

Well, the fantastic Michael Turner paintings created just for the film were always a plus for me, and the Saul Bass titles and intro sequence
were unforgettable...have we mentioned the sound editing?

Some of the non-racing scenes had merit...the episode at the Stoddard estate where "Scott" painfully lowers himself
into the old Lotus, and the accompanying push-start had some poignancy in my opinion.

Definitely, and I did not mean to slight others in technical or artistic capacities. The Turner paintings are definitely worth mention. The photography and the score stand out, but there are other accomplishments of note. Just not with the script, dialogue...those areas ;)


#206 Pullman99

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Posted 18 June 2010 - 05:45

Some of the non-racing scenes had merit...the episode at the Stoddard estate where "Scott" painfully lowers himselfinto the old Lotus, and the accompanying push-start had some poignancy in my opinion.


That's my favourite bit of the film! Along with all the other good bits of course. I seem to remember at the time the motoring press generally liked the idea of giving motorsport some exposure to a whole new audience - and it WAS the most lavish motor racing film ever - but most seemed to agree that the other missing element was a degree of humour. Inevitably, in this context, the real drivers were much more interesting than any of the film characters.


#207 CSquared

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Posted 18 June 2010 - 07:29

Here we go :)...

I am saying that the Monza banking is not THAT historically signifigant. And I will lay odds that the majority of folks who feel fervently about it's preservation do not know the true history of the banking, or that of what preceeded it. Most also seem to be U.S. based which leads me to believe that the movie "Grand Prix", with it's stirring scenes, is what created their sentiments toward the banking.

That's what I'm saying.

Well, ok. You're entitled to your opinion. I'm just surprised to hear that opinion on the Autosport Nostalgia Forum, of all places.


#208 B Squared

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Posted 18 June 2010 - 17:47

I remember seeing this photo in Automobile Year. Until that time, I always had assumed the banking was built for the "Race of Two Worlds" with the USAC Indy cars.

Certainly some historic value one would think. However; through my experience in architectural preservation, the costs can be astronomical. I'm sure that would be the case for the Monza Banking.

photo: F. Kirbus
Posted Image
"Beneath an Italian sky, four Mercedes and a Maserati thunder through the newly-constructed Curva Sud Alta Velocita in the afternoon sun. F. Kirbus, balancing on the concrete rim, took this picture at the 1955 Italian GP."

Edited by B Squared, 18 June 2010 - 19:47.


#209 Jim Thurman

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Posted 18 June 2010 - 19:17

Not to turn this into the Monza Banking Preservation thread (of which there already has been at least one), but yes, there is SOME historic value. My point is the real history of the Monza banking versus the fervor surrounding it's preservation is completely out of whack. And I have to surmise "Grand Prix" is the reason for this. On one hand, this certainly shows how well the brilliant photography and cinematography captured the banking, but on the other hand...

Where's Don Capps when you need him? He is the perfect man to explain the difference between historic versus nostalgic.

Those who are ardent over preservation of the Monza banking are nostalgists. And, nostalgic over something that they likely only recall from seeing a movie! (I believe the banking was only used once or twice after the filming).

Montlhery has much more historical signifigance, and yet, where is the outcry over it's impending demise? Again, I have to assume this is solely because Montlhery wasn't featured in the movie "Grand Prix".

The facts are the Monza banking was poorly designed and even more poorly constructed. It is not ancient, being constructed c. 1955. It also was a nightmare for the drivers - teams and drivers routinely boycotted the few races that actually used the banks. All in all it was simply a failure. It hosted few events - a few (very few) Italian Grand Prixs, the two Race of Two Worlds, a few Sports Car races and the odd Touring Car race. It was used perhaps less than a dozen times total. Seemingly every time they tried to use it, there were problems. Let me ask the nostalgic preservationists this: if the Monza banking was so magnificent (beyond looks), why was it used so little?

There are sites with more signifigant racing history that are routinely lost while all the hand wringing over the possibility of the Monza banking being demolished continues. It's completely askew with it's reality.

And before folks put words in my mouth (or on my screen :) ) - if the Monza banking were to be demolished, I would not celebrate...but unlike the way many here come off, I would not take my own life over it (or inflict my bitching, griping and caterwauling on others either :) ).

The Monza banking is sort of like seeing a stunning member of the opposite sex, only to realize upon delving more deeply that they are shallow and have little to offer other than appearances :D

Edited by Jim Thurman, 18 June 2010 - 19:41.


#210 kayemod

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Posted 18 June 2010 - 19:46

The Monza banking is sort of like seeing a stunning member of the opposite sex, only to realize upon delving more deeply that they are shallow and have little to offer other than appearances :D


The story of my life...


#211 Michael Ferner

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Posted 18 June 2010 - 22:57

The Monza banking is sort of like seeing a stunning member of the opposite sex, only to realize upon delving more deeply that they are shallow and have little to offer other than appearances :D


Aren't they all?





:o


[Btw, I agree with all your points - well put! :up:]

#212 RA Historian

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Posted 19 June 2010 - 01:57

Jim, you have summed matters up very nicely. I agree with what you say.
Tom

#213 RStock

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Posted 19 June 2010 - 03:02

All in all it was simply a failure. It hosted few events - a few (very few) Italian Grand Prixs, the two Race of Two Worlds, a few Sports Car races and the odd Touring Car race. It was used perhaps less than a dozen times total.


I see your point, and I'm not sure this counts, but it does see some use in the Monza rally.




The Monza banking is sort of like seeing a stunning member of the opposite sex, only to realize upon delving more deeply that they are shallow and have little to offer other than appearances :D


Do they really need anything else? I mean, as long as they have enough brains to bring you the beer you asked for instead of say, a can of cat food, what more is needed?


#214 Rob29

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Posted 19 June 2010 - 06:34

I see your point, and I'm not sure this counts, but it does see some use in the Monza rally.






Do they really need anything else? I mean, as long as they have enough brains to bring you the beer you asked for instead of say, a can of cat food, what more is needed?

I feel sorry for any female you come into contact with :cry:
Back to thread subject.Did anyone ever discover why Frankenheimer felt it necessary to include the banking in the fictional Italian GP?

#215 Jim Thurman

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Posted 19 June 2010 - 16:41

Back to thread subject.Did anyone ever discover why Frankenheimer felt it necessary to include the banking in the fictional Italian GP?

That's a good question. Probably just for the stunning visual.

As an aside, Frankenheimer was interviewed at length in the early 90's on "Later" hosted by sportscaster Bob Costas. When Costas asked Frankenheimer what he felt his best film was, he replied "Grand Prix". Now, Costas is a typical U.S. sportscaster, which means he is not a fan of motorsports. Based on Costas' reaction, I feel quite sure he was quite shocked and disappointed when Frankenheimer went on about "Grand Prix" instead of any of his more acclaimed films.

Frankenheimer basically told Costas he felt he captured the feel and atmosphere, which is what he was hoping for and trying to do, adding somewhat insecurely "At least, I think I did..."

#216 theracer120

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Posted 20 October 2010 - 21:36

Grand Prix and Le Mans from a racing perspective are by far the best. A few others I've seen include Redline 7000, Fireball 500 and Speedway, which was an Elvis flick. Redline 7000 was probably the most realistic of those, although most of the footage was real, and there weren't too many crashes, it seems like there were too many to European eyes but there weren't for a NASCAR race. (Perhaps they weren't spaced out enough within the scenes.) The only unrealistic racing moment was in the whole movie when James Caan's character tries to kill another driver. The other driver's car subsequently takes off 50 metres into the air. Speedway was much worse, the races are all at Charlotte and we see Elvis shifting gears to accelerate (on a superspeedway?) and 50% of the crashes are fake, and there are way too many even for a NASCAR race. Fireball 500 was horrific, too many crashes again, although it features dirt track racing unusually for these types of movies. But the last scene at Daytona makes me cringe. The announcer mentions that the race is on lap 239 (in what is usually a 200 lap race,) one of the drivers drives around the track on fire, before crashing over the wall in a car which doesn't even look like his normal car, at a short track. It could very well be the worst finishing scene in a movie ever. I also saw the Big Wheel. There is quite a lot of Indianapolis footage, otherwise the movie would be crap. At the end of the movie we also see Mickey Rooney driving around the track on fire although he didn't crash over the wall.

I've also seen portions of Driven (Drivel best describes it) Thunder in Carolina which was another NASCAR movie from 1959, which seemed to actually be a pretty good movie, with realistic scenes although some are sped up (those are fake anyway though.)

Edited by theracer120, 20 October 2010 - 21:38.


#217 CSquared

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Posted 21 October 2010 - 06:33

Somebody on this forum somewhere mentioned Bobby Deerfield a while ago so I watched it. Terrible! Unbelievably bad movie. So bad sometimes you wonder if it's supposed to be a subtle parody or comedy.

Two bright spots, though:
1. Some very brief footage of what I think was the 1976 Spanish Grand prix. It's brief but the cars look great.
2. This brilliant bit of dialogue:
Al Pacino's super hot girlfriend: "I will make you an omelette."
Al Pacino's character, who acts and talks through the whole movie like he's only barely smart enough to tie his own shoes, and responds to every question by repeating it as if he has no idea what it means: "I don't want an omelette."
Al Pacino's super hot girlfriend: "I will make you an omelette and I don't give a da-- if you want an omelette!"

#218 Michael Ferner

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Posted 21 October 2010 - 13:20

Grand Prix and Le Mans from a racing perspective are by far the best.


That says it all, doesn't it. If 115 years of combined history haven't produced anything better than two extremely dire and boring flicks, then the only possible conclusion is that, despite sharing the same year of birth, motor racing and cinema don't gel.

:(


#219 kayemod

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Posted 21 October 2010 - 13:29

That says it all, doesn't it. If 115 years of combined history haven't produced anything better than two extremely dire and boring flicks, then the only possible conclusion is that, despite sharing the same year of birth, motor racing and cinema don't gel.

:(


My sentiments exactly, maybe two of the best of their kind, but two crap films all the same.


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#220 SEdward

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Posted 21 October 2010 - 15:23

As far as I know, there is nothing "impending" the banking at Montlhéry. In fact, I think that it has been classified as a historical monument and should, therefore, be safe for some time to come. If you can be bothered to climb over the razor wire fencing and deal with the security guards and their pitbulls, then it's well worth a visit...

With regards to the Monza banking, yes, the film clearly added to its charisma. But there is more to it than that.
The Monzapolis races, the 1955 GP, the ill-fated 1961 GP and the sports car races in the 1960s: for me they have all added to the appeal of a now derelict and crumbling edifice.

I was lucky enough to visit Monza when traveling on business to Milan in 1996. To be honest, I could not give a toss about the current circuit. All I wanted to see was the banking. There can be few sites in the world of motorsport that are as evocative, as erie and as majestic as the Monza banking. If I half closed my eyes, then I could almost see and hear two P4s chasing a big white bird with a wing around that same banking in 1967. A memorable place that deserves to be protected.

I think that the number of threads, posts and photos in this forum about the Monza banking clearly demonstrate just how much it means to all of us.

Edward

#221 lanciaman

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Posted 21 October 2010 - 20:59

In my opinion the Best Racing Movies are "LeMans," "Grand Prix," and the consistently overlooked "Winning." How can you overlook PL Newman and superb racing footage at the Speedway? There's a bit of CanAm in it as well, though precious little, I admit.

#222 CSquared

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Posted 22 October 2010 - 06:04

As far as I know, there is nothing "impending" the banking at Montlhéry. In fact, I think that it has been classified as a historical monument and should, therefore, be safe for some time to come. If you can be bothered to climb over the razor wire fencing and deal with the security guards and their pitbulls, then it's well worth a visit...

With regards to the Monza banking, yes, the film clearly added to its charisma. But there is more to it than that.
The Monzapolis races, the 1955 GP, the ill-fated 1961 GP and the sports car races in the 1960s: for me they have all added to the appeal of a now derelict and crumbling edifice.

I was lucky enough to visit Monza when traveling on business to Milan in 1996. To be honest, I could not give a toss about the current circuit. All I wanted to see was the banking. There can be few sites in the world of motorsport that are as evocative, as erie and as majestic as the Monza banking. If I half closed my eyes, then I could almost see and hear two P4s chasing a big white bird with a wing around that same banking in 1967. A memorable place that deserves to be protected.

I think that the number of threads, posts and photos in this forum about the Monza banking clearly demonstrate just how much it means to all of us.

Edward

:up: Well said. Agree 100%. Good to hear the update about Montlhéry, too.

#223 Arjan de Roos

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Posted 22 October 2010 - 06:53

Somebody on this forum somewhere mentioned Bobby Deerfield a while ago so I watched it. Terrible! Unbelievably bad movie.


The BT44B did deserve an Oscar for best supporting actor though.


#224 Arjan de Roos

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Posted 22 October 2010 - 07:03

Montlhery has much more historical signifigance, and yet, where is the outcry over it's impending demise?


Here since '04..
http://forums.autosp...w...c=70889&hl=

BTW its Monthlhery :p

Edited by Arjan de Roos, 22 October 2010 - 07:03.


#225 Jim Thurman

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Posted 22 October 2010 - 17:33

Here we go again! :rolleyes: :lol: At least "words being put into my mouth" hasn't happened, though there still seems to be a misunderstanding. The two of which, is sadly, all I expect.

Edward, you seem to have a better grip of knowledge about the banking's history than some, dare I say many, of the ardent "banking freaks" ;) Though I still stand by my comments. It being dredged up again in this manner, perhaps proves my point more than anything else ;)

If Montlhery is in less danger now than before, good. If it wasn't, it was not my error, I was going by postings by others here. Which again brings up the question of why those who are so fervent about preserving the Monza banks give nary a mention to Montlhery, with a longer history...again, to me, it comes back to "Grand Prix". Montlhery "not" being in danger is a red herring in that (but, is Montlhery truly safe?, see below)

None of the Monza preservationists ever bring up anyplace else and dare I say, few of them are aware of the history of the banking and the history that preceeded them on the same site, let alone other tracks. Which supports my claim all the more. All of the fervor is askew with the REAL and ACTUAL history of the place.

I still believe few would have the ridculously strong feelings they have were it not for a fictional movie. Which to me, is very, very silly. I truly wonder if many of them are aware of any real history!

Here since '04..
http://forums.autosp...w...c=70889&hl=

BTW its Monthlhery :p


You misspelled it too? :p

Thank you Arjan (and thanks for the photos in the thread). Yes, I've seen postings here at TNF expressing grave concern over the future of Montlhery...and it is never mentioned by the Monza banking crew. I should have written "where is the outcry in this thread over that?" Again, supporting my point.

#226 Jim Thurman

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Posted 22 October 2010 - 17:36

The BT44B did deserve an Oscar for best supporting actor though.

Yes and he did his stunt work quite well too :)

#227 10kDA

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Posted 22 October 2010 - 21:54

Best and worst? Grand Prix is one of the best, I would say Le Mans is too, even taking their shortcomings into account. The WORST is "Silver Dream Racer" starring David Essex as a motorcycle racer who has built another British World-Beater. Not only are the action, dialog, and perfomances incredibly bad, the soundtrack has to be heard to be believed. "SILVERDREEEEEM" from a Vocoder, over and over. Laughable. Second has to be "On The Beach" because it features a series of crash scenes in which many, many truly desireable now-classic sports cars are crunched. Maybe the Stallone Indycar stinker is a worse movie. I haven't seen it nor do I have the inclination. "Viva Las Vegas" is actually entertaining in a comical way due to scenes like the one in which during the race Elvis looks over his shoulder for a relatively long, long time at the burning wreckage of his rival's car, turns his attention back to the track ahead, and shakes his head at the tragedy of it all.

In all seriousness, there is a lot in any movie regarding any given subject that needs to be discounted. They're MOVIES, after all. No requirement for any relation to reality. I'm actually a little surprised at the strength of opinion on this topic regarding the merits of the movies. Of the activities I participate in or have participated in and thoroughly enjoy, racing, aviation and music, I have seen very little of any of them depicted in ways which I know to be realistic. Don't get me wrong, I like movies, but I like racing, flying, and playing guitar a lot more. I, and I am sure many others on this board, have learned to tune out the noise associated with scriptwriters' assumptions and fantasies about things we know. There are exceptions, of course - "The World's Fastest Indian" which thankfully avoided every lead-up to any potential Ron Howard Moments; "The Aviator", notable performances and its superb models and replicas of so much long-gone hardware; and - yes - "The Blues Brothers" (I'm on a mission from God and 1) I have played in blues bands at places like Bob's Country Bunker not once, but many times. I blame the Steve Lawrence character. 2) My mentor was very much like Curtis, the custodian at the orphanage. 3) If the Brothers played a place fictionally named the Palace Ballroom located 106 miles north of Chicago, I have played there too, though it could be one of a number of venues under their "real" names. 4) Any musician who has been pulled over early in the morning on the way home from a gig really wants to see the cop and his car involved in that closing pileup.)

Grand Prix was startling when it came out. I saw it when it was in its first theatrical release. The in-car footage was unlike anything seen before. The aerial shots at Spa were spectacular, really showing the speed of the cars and the heavy braking for the hairpin. This kind of thing is common on TV coverage these days but at that time I had seen nothing like it. And on a screen half-a-block wide! Real drivers whom I had recognized from magazine photos. I had never seen even a picture of a Lotus 16 before (I think that's what Scott's brother's car was) and here it was, in a closeup and running up and down the driveway. Awesome! Except I think I said at the time "Boss!" The "love interest" subplots were just the stuff between races. I was entertained by the racing, bored by all the rest. Such are the vehicles of "Entertainment".

Chris

#228 markpde

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Posted 23 October 2010 - 10:41

What seems to have passed everyone by is that the 1999 F1 Championship actually was a movie. Given Sylvester Stallone's presence at almost every European Grand Prix that year, and the fact that the early part of the season was mind-numbingly (and for Bernie Ecclestone, worryingly) predictable, there is cause to suspect that the latter part of the season was a pure sham...

Ecclestone's motorhome, somewhere in England, early July 1999...

Stallone: Ok Mika, so, uh, this is how it goes down - at Silverstone, uh, your rear wheel falls off.

Hakkinen: [pause] What?

Stallone: Yeah. Then in Austria, your team-mate, uh, what's his name... uh, yeah, Cooltard... uh, he takes you out.

Hakkinen: [pause] Oh, man... Gif us a break...

Stallone: Yeah, well, uh... then at Hockenheim, uh, we'll get this "insane guy" - y'know - "human interest story?" - to walk down the middle of the track so everyone has to swerve... And, uh, then your refueling rig malfunctions, and your rear wing collapses and your rear tire explodes, and...

Hakkinen: Oh no. No way. No way! [Gets up, as if to leave, then sits down again.] [pause] Listen - haf you any idea how dangerous tat is? What do you tink tis is - a movie?!

Irvine (laughing): Don't worry, Mika - at Monza you get to go for the Oscar...

Hakkinen: [pause] What is tat supposed to mean?

Schumacher: [coughs politely] So. What happens to me, then?

Stallone: I was just comin' to you, Michael, uh... At Silverstone, uh...

Edited by markpde, 28 October 2010 - 14:27.


#229 oldtransamdriver

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Posted 19 November 2010 - 06:01

This may have been a previous thread which I missed, but I Just happened to catch the last part of "On The Beach" and the racing sequence. Was this "race" actually filmed somewhere in Australia, or in the US? I vaguely remember seeing this film when it came out.

Robert Barg



#230 Tim Murray

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Posted 19 November 2010 - 08:42

The racing scenes were filmed partly at Phillip Island and partly at Riverside. Have a look at these earlier threads:

'On the Beach'

track featured in ‘On the Beach’ ??

and this very useful link originally posted in the earlier threads by Frank Sheffield:

http://delarue.net/beach.htm

#231 VZ935

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Posted 19 November 2010 - 18:54

To me Gran Prix and Le Mans are the best .

Driven is absolutely the worst pile of crap. Stallone was supposed to do an F1 movie but I heard after Eccelstone got a taste of Stallone's script he said thanks but no thanks.welcome Kart.. actually I am just bitter because I went out on track and could not pick quarters up off the track, bruised my confidence :)

Rendezvous - I do not share most peoples love of this film... It is a fraud and then some. I have spent enough time on the track to be able to tell when the sound of a car in full song does not match the rate at which it overtakes and passes other cars... we have a Ferrari at 6000rpm in third gear and it takes 30 seconds to pass a 1.2 liter Topolino . Unfortunately this movie is made on public roads so there are other cars tooling about. Watch how long it takes the Ferrari to pass those cars.


Two Lane Black Top- drag racing movie but this goes in both categories.. people either love this movie or they hate it . I do like the scenes with Warren Oats in his GTO Judge .

Kart Racer with Randy Quaid ..... don't bother . Saw it on HBO the other day and lasted about 2 min..


You want a great movie ? Get someone to make a movie about IMSA in the 70-80s .... add a little Hollywood flair and you will have a movie that everyone will like. The Whittington's (enough said) .... you have the actor angle with Paul Newman , Dick Smothers, Gene Hackman , Bobby Carradine .. the Central and South American drivers/connection, the arrive and drive European's and Euro teams .... Every character imaginable for most countries. I would donate some of my cars to that venture

#232 Michael Ferner

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Posted 19 November 2010 - 20:44

Rendezvous - I do not share most peoples love of this film... It is a fraud and then some. I have spent enough time on the track to be able to tell when the sound of a car in full song does not match the rate at which it overtakes and passes other cars... we have a Ferrari at 6000rpm in third gear and it takes 30 seconds to pass a 1.2 liter Topolino . Unfortunately this movie is made on public roads so there are other cars tooling about. Watch how long it takes the Ferrari to pass those cars.


I have never seen that movie, and I never will. I do not condone irresponsible and dangerous behaviour by furthering a demand for a product that was created that way. Ne-ver.

#233 lanciaman

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Posted 20 November 2010 - 17:25

Unless I missed it somewhere, no one has mentioned "The Last American Hero" with Jeff Bridges finding success in stock cars. It was based on a Tom Wolfe essay about a real life driver and has a feel of authenticity, especially considering its time and budget. Much more palatable than the Tom Cruise crashathon.

#234 kayemod

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Posted 20 November 2010 - 17:56

Unless I missed it somewhere, no one has mentioned "The Last American Hero" with Jeff Bridges finding success in stock cars. It was based on a Tom Wolfe essay about a real life driver and has a feel of authenticity, especially considering its time and budget. Much more palatable than the Tom Cruise crashathon.


Yes it has, post #144 by me, we've had other threads on racing in films, and I always try to add a plug for The Last American Hero, an excellent film by any standards, and almost unique among films with any racing or even driving content, in that all of the action is well done, well filmed, and entirely believable, it is of course based on the life of legendary US racer Junior Johnson. On Rendezvous, or to give its full title C'était un Rendezvous, I found this a big disappointment. It's such an obvious fake, the soundtrack is all dubbed, bears little relation to the screen action, and it's hard to fathom how it could ever have fooled anyone with any nous. If you know the streets of Paris at all, it's fairly easy to work out that the average speed over the route is more like 60 or 70mph, young French garçons in their small Renaults and Peugeots can be seen doing this at almost any time of day, outside the morning and evening rush.

#235 sandy

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Posted 21 November 2010 - 00:48

On the Beach Grand Prix



#236 lanciaman

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Posted 21 November 2010 - 01:40

Yes it has, post #144 by me, we've had other threads on racing in films, and I always try to add a plug for The Last American Hero, an excellent film by any standards, and almost unique among films with any racing or even driving content, in that all of the action is well done, well filmed, and entirely believable, it is of course based on the life of legendary US racer Junior Johnson.


Forgive my redundancy. "Last American Hero" has long been a favorite, in part because of the lovely Valerie Perrine (memorable in Kurt Vonnegut's "Slaughterhouse Five") who described herself to "Junior Johnson" as "a little Georgia peach pit."
This is also a very readable piece by Mr Wolfe, whom I used to see in Manhattan strolling about in his white suit.

#237 brucemoxon

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Posted 21 November 2010 - 02:02

Forgive my redundancy. "Last American Hero" has long been a favorite, in part because of the lovely Valerie Perrine (memorable in Kurt Vonnegut's "Slaughterhouse Five") who described herself to "Junior Johnson" as "a little Georgia peach pit."
This is also a very readable piece by Mr Wolfe, whom I used to see in Manhattan strolling about in his white suit.



+ 1 for The Last American Hero. Quite good and enjoyable. The Wolfe story on which it was based was quite interesting - a good magazine article.

Has anyone mentioned Australian film 'Sidecar Racers'? Avoid it if possible. And there was one I rented once called 'Safari Rally, The Big Race.' Dubbed from Italian into English, I think - awful dialogue, a stupid premise and totally unrealistic and unbelievable. So bad it has to be seen, sort of - like passing a crash on the road, it's impossible to look away.


Bruce Moxon

#238 VZ935

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Posted 22 November 2010 - 07:48

i agree on ,"The Last American Hero" ... I am a Chevy guy but still I dig that movie.


I saw Crash Palace when it came out at an art theater about 28 years ago .... I enjoyed that movie and own it on lazer disc . Of course love the scene when he takes a little test drive but the scene on the rail road tracks is classic !

#239 GD66

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Posted 22 November 2010 - 09:05

Do you mean Smash Palace ? With Bruno Lawrence as Al Shaw ? Steve Millen drove the Ralt that Christmas series in NZ with the on-course commentators referring to him as Al Shaw for cinematic purposes. :lol: Also surprising to see how well the car handled on gravel...

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#240 Chezrome

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Posted 22 November 2010 - 09:06

On the Beach Grand Prix


Oh. My. God. Fred Astaire as a racing driver... this little clip is an absolute testament to bad taste...

#241 ronmac

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Posted 22 November 2010 - 10:21

:clap: To vz 935.. In the movie smash palace..at the start of the race..that crash really happened..in a n z grand prix meeting.. with steve millen driving... as a kiwi..he has been competing most of his life in the usa.. truck..pick up racing on dirt..hill climbs etc.. or is that his brother they both compete (david mc k ) would know.. they return to nz from time to time ron mac...

#242 lanciaman

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Posted 22 November 2010 - 13:16

Oh. My. God. Fred Astaire as a racing driver... this little clip is an absolute testament to bad taste...


Well, yes, but remember the premise is that the rest of the world is dead from radiation and only this little bit of Australia is still functioning. The story is chilling because it presents the last remnants of humanity still carrying on more or less normally, with civility. A considerable suspension of disbelief is required to accept that there would be a race at all, much less one with so much carnage, much much less that it would be won by novice racer Fred Astaire (who goes to his end, revving the Ferrari's enigne in a closed garage). This is a great movie that is oddly enhanced by the race rather than diminished by its improbability. It also is a movie that would not play to today's audiences. I haven't seen the remake but read it was awful.

#243 kayemod

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Posted 22 November 2010 - 14:01

Oh. My. God. Fred Astaire as a racing driver... this little clip is an absolute testament to bad taste...


Maybe, but I'm sure that his footwork on the pedals would have been a joy to behold.


#244 milestone 11

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Posted 22 November 2010 - 17:00

Anyone interested in On the Beach, showing on TCM, Sky 317 this afternoon at 17.50.

#245 ronmac

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Posted 02 December 2010 - 22:19

:wave: HI all...Just bought two dozen videos from a charity shop and found a copy of Checkered Flag which i see by comments that it is poorly rated..(R.S.) But then i found a listing in Leonard Maltins Movie Guide.....Checkered Flag or Crash..with susan sarandon and larry hagman ??? the film was made in the philippines dated 1977 (95 mins.) and rated at 2..(compared with pretty woman at 3 and thelma and louise at 3 ) so it can.t have been too bad. has anyone seen it or have a copy..??

#246 Michael Ferner

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Posted 02 December 2010 - 23:06

Wot? "Pretty Woman" and "Thelma & Louise" get the same rating??? Bullshit, if you ask me... :rolleyes:

#247 ronmac

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Posted 02 December 2010 - 23:58

:wave: OK michael..give me your ratings..Please....Without the bad language !!!!Kind regards...ron..

#248 ronmac

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Posted 04 March 2011 - 04:49

:p :p HI.. I just picked up a DVD movie named...FAST GIRL...(Mircea Monroe ) 2008..and could.nt see it mentioned on this site..
Although it may have been..I had hoped that it was the racing career of .Anita Taylor..but not that lucky..!!
Has anyone sighted this movie..and is it going to be as bad as i fear ?? Can anyone give me your rating out of 10 ??
(Has she got what it takes to follow in the footsteps of her late father and become a World Champion Race Car Driver ??)

#249 E1pix

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Posted 04 March 2011 - 09:03

:p :p HI.. I just picked up a DVD movie named...FAST GIRL...(Mircea Monroe ) Has anyone sighted this movie..and is it going to be as bad as i fear ?? Can anyone give me your rating out of 10 ??
(Has she got what it takes to follow in the footsteps of her late father and become a World Champion Race Car Driver ??)


Yes, made it through maybe 15 minutes.... really, REALLY Bad! Was hoping it was about L. Lombardi or D. Wilson (right!), but alas, not. I'd give those first minutes a 1.125 of 10 — ONLY because there was a cool car in there (a Mustang, I think — forgettable in general).

I've read but one page in this thread, so apologies if I'm remiss.... I think 'The World's Fastest Indian' qualifies as a racing movie, and I loved it! Even with the cross-dresser.

Someone mentioned 'Thelma & Louise.' On a return trip from a Utah photo shoot, my wife and I drove through Cisco, Utah in August, 1990, and passed a huge parking lot of tractor-trailors, in an area with a whole heap of nothing. We turned around, and ended up on the set of that ghastly movie. I had my camera bags, we each donned one, and walked around all day like we belonged there, shooting black & whites of Ridley Scott, Sarandon and Davis, the whole bit. They burned a giant pile of tires for background to simulate cop cars' crash-burn, and I ended up with some pretty cool movie bits. Beyond that, it's a horrid film, and I can't believe there were Academy Award nominations given!

I agree with others.... 1) Le Mans; 2) Grand Prix. Them having no storylines was secondary for me.


#250 ronmac

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Posted 04 March 2011 - 09:57

:stoned:EI.Pix Thank you for your comments..which i appreciate..When i have an hour or so to waste i.ll have a look and won.t expect too much !!
For $2..I hav.nt wasted a lot..
Interesting .. the story about your adventure on the lot of Thelma and Louise...Lets face it you were photographers on an OSCA winning film..
Sounds like fun.. Thanks again..