Jump to content


Photo

Le Mans 1955, Mortelle Compétition. An animation short by Quentin Baillieux


  • Please log in to reply
15 replies to this topic

#1 MaxScelerate

MaxScelerate
  • Member

  • 4,649 posts
  • Joined: January 02

Posted 04 December 2019 - 23:30

Youtube's algorithm suggested this to me. Pretty good if you ask me, but what do I know (nothing, really).

 

Anyway, thought you guys might like it. It's totally respectful.



Advertisement

#2 Ray Bell

Ray Bell
  • Member

  • 66,805 posts
  • Joined: December 99

Posted 05 December 2019 - 08:39

I think it is too fanciful, though in the main delicately handled...

It does make you wonder what John Fitch really felt about it, though I'm sure somewhere his thoughts are recorded in books, interviews etc. But for many there are several facts which are amiss.

Neubauer, at the beginning, says, "You know this is my last race (or was it season?)" and they certainly didn't know at that time. The team were, in fact, working on developments of both the W196 and the 300SLR for the 1956 season, so that is not the case. Also, Le Mans is in June, there was still a few months of the season left to run.

But, as I said, it makes you wonder. And we also know that the crash saw the car into the crowd right across from the Mercedes-Benz pits, they would have known from the beginning that it was Levegh's car which went into the crowd. And there were people cut down on the pits side of the track too.

Thanks for bringing this to our attention.

#3 Tim Murray

Tim Murray
  • Moderator

  • 22,182 posts
  • Joined: May 02

Posted 05 December 2019 - 09:19

I only watched it up to when the accident occurred before getting fed up with all the inaccuracy. I can’t believe that Fitch had the attitude attributed to him. At the time the accident occurred he was in the Mercedes caravan behind the pits drinking coffee with Levegh’s wife Denise, which would indicate that Mercedes were not about to make any scheduled pit stops at that time (although Kling did make his unscheduled stop with a sticking throttle). Thus the supposed dialogue between Fitch and ‘Neubauer’ as the accident unfolded is complete nonsense.

#4 proviz

proviz
  • Member

  • 592 posts
  • Joined: October 06

Posted 05 December 2019 - 10:33

Ahem... it was still bright daylight at the time of the accident...



#5 nexfast

nexfast
  • Member

  • 605 posts
  • Joined: August 12

Posted 05 December 2019 - 23:01

Interview of the Director in French but with English subtitles where he explains why he made the film and the respective research. Not very convincing, I would say.

 

https://vimeo.com/315719015



#6 Ray Bell

Ray Bell
  • Member

  • 66,805 posts
  • Joined: December 99

Posted 06 December 2019 - 13:14

I have a distinct feeling that if Mike Argetsinger were still about he would carefully word a post to explain that John Fitch was a 'team player' and could not possibly have displayed the attitude he's given in this clip...

Maybe Don Capps could have something to say about it too?

#7 DCapps

DCapps
  • Member

  • 507 posts
  • Joined: August 16

Posted 06 December 2019 - 15:58

Oh. My. Goodness... Where to even begin!

 

Ahem... it was still bright daylight at the time of the accident...

 

It was still very much daylight at the time the incident happened. That is something that I distinctly remember.

 

I have a distinct feeling that if Mike Argetsinger were still about he would carefully word a post to explain that John Fitch was a 'team player' and could not possibly have displayed the attitude he's given in this clip...

Maybe Don Capps could have something to say about it too?

Although Mike -- not to mention his father, Cameron -- certainly knew John Fitch far better than I did, of course, I did spend considerable time with Fitch on a number of occasions, mostly in the company of Mike, but also several times with Cameron. No idea as why Fitch was portrayed that way, at least none that I am aware of. Fitch's accounts of his time with Mercedes are readily available and his performances would definitely suggest that Fitch was very much a Team Player.

 

As mentioned, Daimler-Benz was definitely looking at competing in 1956 at this time. Not to point out, of course, that a week later there was Neubauer at Zandvoort -- not to mention the rest of abbreviated season.Scarcely Don Alfredo's last race....

 

Fitch suggested that one person who was truly affected by the crash was Phil Walters.

 

From the time I was a schoolboy and watched Fitch and then later as I was fortunate enough to actually have the sort of rambling, bouncing-around sort of casual conversations that tend to give you a good idea about someone, I admired John Fitch. I think that I can say with some assurance that the Argetsinger family definitely thought very highly of Fitch. This includes Jean Argetsinger as well as Mike and Cameron.

 

Whatever possessed the person making this video to produce something that is basically a counterfactual tale is beyond me.


Edited by DCapps, 06 December 2019 - 15:58.


#8 MaxScelerate

MaxScelerate
  • Member

  • 4,649 posts
  • Joined: January 02

Posted 07 December 2019 - 14:26

Errr, colour me UNimpressed, then...  Seemed pretty down-to-earth to me  - I feared a trashy manga (japanimation) style superexplosion and was treated to a nice tale, but which amounts, I understand, to a complete fabulation...  

 

Oh well...



#9 Ray Bell

Ray Bell
  • Member

  • 66,805 posts
  • Joined: December 99

Posted 07 December 2019 - 20:33

Don has previously posted his own eyewitness account of this accident, or at least pieces of it...

It's hard to go past someone who was actually there and knew the players in the act.

#10 Doug Nye

Doug Nye
  • Member

  • 9,705 posts
  • Joined: February 02

Posted 08 December 2019 - 23:42

Sorry - but I find that a pretty nasty, distasteful, ugly piece of work.  Why work so hard - and with such evident skill - to produce such a piece of misleading dross...? 


Edited by Doug Nye, 13 December 2019 - 23:42.


#11 Ray Bell

Ray Bell
  • Member

  • 66,805 posts
  • Joined: December 99

Posted 09 December 2019 - 01:59

I'd hate for Max to be feeling that he's wasted his efforts posting this here...

It was worthwhile looking at from the point of view that if we encounter people who have seen it we can help them understand what was right and what was wrong.

Just a couple of pictures to illustrate points raised, however:

0306uhlenhaut300-SLR.jpg

This is the car Mercedes were developing for the 1956 Sports Car racing season. Instead of competing in the Mille Miglia, Le Mans etc, it was put to use for some years as Uhlenhaut's personal transport.

0306-MBtransporterside.jpg

A scene at the end of the film shows the high-speed transporter having a 300SLR loaded onto it. But note that it's being loaded back to front, unlike the more logical way shown by this display at the Mercedes-Benz museum.

Just to get the dates right, too...

Le Mans was on 11th and 12th June.

The F1 season ended on 11th September.

The World Sports Car Championship ended on 16th October.

Mercedes competed right to the end and it was only after that final race at the Targa Florio that they tied up the Sports Car title. Pulling out of Le Mans didn't help them at all.

It was after all of that the team were told they weren't racing the following year.

#12 Tim Murray

Tim Murray
  • Moderator

  • 22,182 posts
  • Joined: May 02

Posted 09 December 2019 - 03:52

I'd hate for Max to be feeling that he's wasted his efforts posting this here...

It was worthwhile looking at from the point of view that if we encounter people who have seen it we can help them understand what was right and what was wrong.

My sincere thanks to MaxScelerate for posting the film here, as otherwise I should probably never have come across it. But as Doug says, they obviously put a lot of effort into it, and some of the minor attention to detail was fascinating. So why, why oh why did they have to make such a bollocks of the main story? They even chose to alter the time of the accident - why? :well:

#13 Jack-the-Lad

Jack-the-Lad
  • Member

  • 2,182 posts
  • Joined: March 03

Posted 09 December 2019 - 14:28

Sorry - but I find that a pretty nasty, distasteful, ugly piece of work.  Why work so hard - and with such evident skill - to produce such a piece of misleadng dross...?


My sincere thanks to MaxScelerate for posting the film here, as otherwise I should probably never have come across it. But as Doug says, they obviously put a lot of effort into it, and some of the minor attention to detail was fascinating. So why, why oh why did they have to make such a bollocks of the main story? They even chose to alter the time of the accident - why? :well:


Right. What, exactly, could the point of this possibly be?

#14 Falcadore

Falcadore
  • Member

  • 1,637 posts
  • Joined: April 99

Posted 10 December 2019 - 00:40

What was the point?
They wrote the script because it makes an emotional impact. Telling the story factually doesn't suit the project.
Film making is like politics, you are working towards an end you want to achieve and the truth will frequently be inconvenient to the process.



#15 Ray Bell

Ray Bell
  • Member

  • 66,805 posts
  • Joined: December 99

Posted 10 December 2019 - 00:59

Then why claim he's done all the research?

Where have you been, anyway?

#16 MaxScelerate

MaxScelerate
  • Member

  • 4,649 posts
  • Joined: January 02

Posted 11 December 2019 - 00:51

Hey, it's all good with me. I learned a lot, so thanks everyone.  And I'll have to concur with Doug, Tim and all in wondering why would someone (seemingly) be so thorough and then discard whole chunks of important reality.  Obviously it's that appearance of attention to details that sold me on it, so... meh.