HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
American Fiction
Poor Things
Thunderclap
Zeiram
Legend of the Bat
Party Line
Night Fright
Pacha, Le
Kimi
Assemble Insert
Venus Tear Diamond, The
Promare
Beauty's Evil Roses, The
Free Guy
Huck and Tom's Mississippi Adventure
Rejuvenator, The
Who Fears the Devil?
Guignolo, Le
Batman, The
Land of Many Perfumes
Cat vs. Rat
Tom & Jerry: The Movie
Naked Violence
Joyeuses Pacques
Strangeness, The
How I Became a Superhero
Golden Nun
Incident at Phantom Hill
Winterhawk
Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City
Maigret Sets a Trap
B.N.A.
Hell's Wind Staff, The
Topo Gigio and the Missile War
Battant, Le
Penguin Highway
Cazadore de Demonios
Snatchers
Imperial Swordsman
Foxtrap
   
 
Newest Articles
3 From Arrow Player: Sweet Sugar, Girls Nite Out and Manhattan Baby
Little Cat Feat: Stephen King's Cat's Eye on 4K UHD
La Violence: Dobermann at 25
Serious Comedy: The Wrong Arm of the Law on Blu-ray
DC Showcase: Constantine - The House of Mystery and More on Blu-ray
Monster Fun: Three Monster Tales of Sci-Fi Terror on Blu-ray
State of the 70s: Play for Today Volume 3 on Blu-ray
The Movie Damned: Cursed Films II on Shudder
The Dead of Night: In Cold Blood on Blu-ray
Suave and Sophisticated: The Persuaders! Take 50 on Blu-ray
Your Rules are Really Beginning to Annoy Me: Escape from L.A. on 4K UHD
A Woman's Viewfinder: The Camera is Ours on DVD
Chaplin's Silent Pursuit: Modern Times on Blu-ray
The Ecstasy of Cosmic Boredom: Dark Star on Arrow
A Frosty Reception: South and The Great White Silence on Blu-ray
You'll Never Guess Which is Sammo: Skinny Tiger and Fatty Dragon on Blu-ray
Two Christopher Miles Shorts: The Six-Sided Triangle/Rhythm 'n' Greens on Blu-ray
Not So Permissive: The Lovers! on Blu-ray
Uncomfortable Truths: Three Shorts by Andrea Arnold on MUBI
The Call of Nostalgia: Ghostbusters Afterlife on Blu-ray
Moon Night - Space 1999: Super Space Theater on Blu-ray
Super Sammo: Warriors Two and The Prodigal Son on Blu-ray
Sex vs Violence: In the Realm of the Senses on Blu-ray
What's So Funny About Brit Horror? Vampira and Bloodbath at the House of Death on Arrow
Keeping the Beatles Alive: Get Back
   
 
  Le Mans Driving Force
Year: 1971
Director: Lee H. Katzin
Stars: Steve McQueen, Siegfried Rauch, Elga Andersen, Ronald Leigh-Hunt, Fred Haltiner, Luc Merenda, Christopher Waite, Louise Edlind, Angelo Infanti, Jean-Claude Bercq, Michele Scalera, Gino Cassani, Alfred Bell, Carlo Cecchi, Richard Rüdiger, Hal Hamilton
Genre: Drama, ActionBuy from Amazon
Rating:  7 (from 1 vote)
Review: Michael Delaney (Steve McQueen) is driving around France in his Porsche, specifically the area where the famed twenty-four hour race Le Mans takes place, wallowing in his memories of competing in it the previous year. Not that those memories are good ones, as he never finished his contest having crashed part of the way through it with the result that one of the other drivers died. He still sees the man's widow, Lisa Belgetti (Elga Andersen), at race meetings and wonders why, not to mention the guilt he feels; however, he is prepared to put this to one side to compete in this year's Le Mans as the need for speed outweighs anything else in his life...

When talking about the greatest racing car movie ever made, and not counting such unofficial events as The Gumball Rally or The Cannonball Run, it appears to boil down to one of two films, made within five years of each other quite a while ago. Nobody rates Days of Thunder or Driven, nobody who knows their way around a racetrack anyway, so Le Mans and Grand Prix seem to be the benchmarks that all others have to live up to, and the debate about which is better will probably rage as long as there are still copies of both to be seen. Steve McQueen wouldn't have any doubt that he'd made the better movie, of course, as this was practically his baby from the inception of the project.

His cantankerous personality tended to sour the experience for everyone involved, seeing off the original director John Sturges and drafting in a television director in his place who presumably would be more likely to do whatever Steve said, but the fans of this have great faith that he knew what he was doing when he implemented his hands on style. That extended to doing his own driving for the race sequences, not that it was obvious as he would be wearing his helmet and facemask, so it could have been any of the professional racers he recruited behind the wheel of his Porsche. For the sake of drama, a plot was conjured up which lost a little of the authentic tone, but this was not a documentary after all.

Nonetheless, when Delaney keeps crossing paths with Lisa, you are led to expect far more fireworks than actually happen, as what the relationship amounts to is a few hushed conversations and meaningful looks, which in itself is significant because McQueen kept his dialogue down to a minimum - he doesn't speak at all for about the first forty minutes of the film. But really the character stuff is a distraction from the driving, and you can tell the star's heart wasn't in those parts where he has to communicate. The result of this is a noticeably icy work, where any emotion is given only to the cars themselves as with little false hysteria, repressed or otherwise, it is the roar of those engines which has our excitement levels rising.

In its way, Le Mans is the 2001: A Space Odyssey of racing movies. Think about it: the hypnotic travelling of great distances, the muted emotions, only the machines allotted any outward expression, and those high speed shots of the drivers in their cockpits as the scenery rushes by in a blur are like the stargate sequence of the Kubrick film, only more grounded in reality. Not even winning the race means as much as reaching that bulleting performance in the vehicles, as if attaining these velocities is enough to send the participants into a higher state of consciousness which they will forever crave when the race is over and they must get back to their ordinary lives. Yes, there are crashes, and those bystanders who observe how dangerous it all is, including wives and girlfriends, but the true driver will not be put off by these things. Only the last segment where it seems Delaney will replace Lisa's late husband in her affections seems a trifle off. Music by Michel Legrand.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 4883 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Enoch Sneed
Darren Jones
  Louise Hackett
Mark Le Surf-hall
Andrew Pragasam
Mary Sibley
Graeme Clark
  Desbris M
   

 

Last Updated: