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Le Mans (1971)

Approved | | Action, Adventure, Drama | 23 June 1971 (USA)
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4:37 | Clip
Almost at the verge of documentary, film depicts a single auto race from the ground up.

Director:

Lee H. Katzin

Writer:

Harry Kleiner
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Popularity
4,320 ( 661)
Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Steve McQueen ... Michael Delaney
Siegfried Rauch ... Erich Stahler
Elga Andersen ... Lisa Belgetti
Ronald Leigh-Hunt ... David Townsend
Fred Haltiner Fred Haltiner ... Johann Ritter
Luc Merenda ... Claude Aurac
Christopher Waite Christopher Waite ... Larry Wilson
Louise Edlind ... Mrs. Anna Ritter
Angelo Infanti Angelo Infanti ... Lugo Abratte
Jean-Claude Bercq Jean-Claude Bercq ... Paul-Jacques Dion
Michele Scalera Michele Scalera ... Vito Scaliso
Gino Cassani Gino Cassani ... Loretto Fuselli
Alfred Bell Alfred Bell ... Tommy Hopkins
Carlo Cecchi Carlo Cecchi ... Paolo Scadenza
Richard Rüdiger Richard Rüdiger ... Bruno Frohm
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Storyline

Almost in breadth and depth of a documentary, this movie depicts an auto race during the 70s on the world's hardest endurance course: Le Mans in France. The race goes over 24 hours on 13.4 kilometers of cordoned country road. Every few hours the two drivers per car alternate - but it's still a challenge for concentration and material. In the focus is the duel between the German Stahler in Ferrari 512LM and the American Delaney in Gulf Team Porsche 917. Delaney is under extraordinary pressure, because the year before he caused a severe accident, in which his friend Lisa's husband was killed. Written by Tom Zoerner <Tom.Zoerner@informatik.uni-erlangen.de>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Steve McQueen takes you for a drive in the country. The country is France. The drive is at 200 MPH! See more »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | French | Italian | German

Release Date:

23 June 1971 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Le Mans See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$7,573,797 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

70 mm 6-Track (70 mm prints)| Mono (35 mm prints)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Steve McQueen had asked John Sturges to direct, but the two men couldn't agree on how to construct the movie. Sturges wanted to make a film with a more conventional script that focused on the relationships of the racers and concluded in typical Hollywood fashion with an upbeat ending. McQueen was more interested in making a racing documentary and he insisted on using very little dialogue in the film, making the cars the stars of the picture. He also expressed a desire to emulate some of the art house dramas being released in Europe at the time and told Motor Trend magazine that he had been inspired by French director Claude Lelouch's award-winning film A Man and a Woman (1966). Sturges' traditional approach to the material would lead to a giant rift in the production as well as signal the end of his working relationship with McQueen and he left the movie before filming began. As he left, Sturges cited, "I am too old and rich to put up with this shit". See more »

Goofs

The main accident scene has at least four cars involved, but only the important two are mentioned by the track announcer. See more »

Quotes

David Townsend: Michael, I want you to drive flat out. I want Porsche to win Le Mans.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Steve McQueen: American Icon (2017) See more »

Soundtracks

Delaney's Arrival And Memories
Written and Performed by Michel Legrand Et Son Orchestre
See more »

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User Reviews

 
The finest motor racing film on the planet.
2 November 2005 | by info-6429See all my reviews

If you are a petrol head and you have never seen this film you must have been born on another planet and I urge you to see it now. This film can be best described as motor racing porn. Incredible race car footage shot at the 1970 le Mans 24 hours race together with all the tensions and incidents of this famous endurance battle. Cameo appearances of famous race car drivers of the period. Full of staged crashes with cars that would now be worth $ millions. Not much of a story line and that was intentional, but who cares. This is motor racing at its best full of incident and as near to the real Le Mans as you can get. A veritable masterpiece of cinematic history.As fresh today as when it first hit the silver screen in 1971.


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