In February 1966, the film rights to the book passed from director Mark Robson to Paramount Pictures at a cost of $15,000 for producer Steve Alexander and screenwriter Graham Ferguson. Alternate Versions We discuss the groundbreaking cinematography, the nature… The movie's name was changed to "Downhill Racer" from that of its source, The film was made and released about six years after its source novel "The Downhill Racers" by, Robert Redford would work with director Michael Ritchie in "The Candidate." Charles Bluhdorn, who was Austrian, may have influenced the decision on film locations; he created the production company Wildwood. Lots of good skiing action leading to an exciting climax. Downhill Racer premiered at the Granada Theatre in Reno, Nevada, on October 28, 1969. Downhill Racer is a 1969 American sports drama film starring Robert Redford, Gene Hackman and Camilla Sparv, and was the directorial debut of Michael Ritchie. The team's top racer, Johnny Creech (Jim McMullan), tells assistant coach Mayo (Dabney Coleman), "He's never been for the team, and he never will be." Downhill Racer (1969) 11/06/1969 (US) Drama 1h 41m User Score. The film was released one month after Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, also starring Redford. After waiting several days alone, Chappellet realizes that she is not coming. cklein86 Felt like the 1960s version of a modern movie where CGI explosions distract you from the lack of plot and acting 1 week 2 days ago One night in Grenoble, they discussed the central character of David Chappellet. A song comes on titled "It Was a Long Happy Day" by a singer named Hank Hopkins. The film received positive reviews upon its theatrical release, with Roger Ebert calling it "the best movie ever made about sports—without really being about sports at all.". Downhill Racer (1969) Movies, TV, Celebs, and more... Oscars Best Picture Winners Best Picture Winners Golden Globes Emmys STARmeter Awards San Diego Comic-Con New York Comic-Con Sundance Film Festival Toronto Int'l Film Festival Awards Central Festival Central All Events Chappellet drives into town and picks up an old girlfriend and they make love in the back seat of his father's old Chevrolet. Awards & Events. Release Calendar DVD & Blu-ray ... What to Watch Latest Trailers IMDb TV IMDb Originals IMDb Picks IMDb Podcasts. Christian Doermer Brumm. They meet up again in Wengen, ski the slopes together, and eventually make love. Though the two titles still remained quite similar to each other, the changed title works well for the movie. David Chappellet is a mean-spirited skier, who profits from another skier's injury to gain a spot on the American Olympic team. Menu. Directed by Michael Ritchie. The movie's name was changed to "Downhill Racer" from that of its source, Oakley Hall's 1963 novel "The Downhill Racers." Lots of good skiing action leading to an exciting climax. Simpson - American Crime Story (TV Series 2016)   |   Robert Hillmann   |   Hadley Gannaway. Sylvester Stallone appeared as an extra in the restaurant scene. However, on the course, an unheralded German skier in a later seed is turning in very fast split times. On Metacritic, the film has a weighted average score of 89 out of 100, based on 15 critics, indicating "universal acclaim". Film is released in 1969-11-06 by Paramount, . Best Drama Written Directly for the Screen, Kathleen Crowley as American newspaper woman, Sylvester Stallone as Restaurant Patron (uncredited). Focused on directing Rosemary's Baby, Polanski soon left the project, and the studio sued Redford for walking away from the starring role. other than inner turmoil. We draw parallels to what is portrayed in the Michael Ritchie with the actual sporting events that take place today, including the thrills of victory and the agony of defeat. The next week, Chappellet runs into Carole in Wengen and is annoyed that she never called and that she is with another man. Rotten Tomatoes 80%. | Downhill Racer (1969) Drama-IMDb 6.4. Soon after, Redford found his director and decided to make the film cheaply in Europe. The off-season scenes were filmed in Colorado: the track scene at Potts Field on the east campus of the University of Colorado in Boulder, and the hometown street scenes in Idaho Springs, thirty miles (50 km) west of Denver. Downhill Racer (1969) directed by Michael Ritchie, starring Robert Redford and Gene Hackman. Oscars Best Picture Winners Best Picture Winners Golden Globes Emmys STARmeter Awards San Diego Comic-Con New York Comic-Con Sundance Film Festival Toronto Int'l Film Festival Awards Central Festival Central All Events. James Salter prepared notes for the story, which did not resemble Hall's novel—Salter had not even read the book. | Later, when his father asks him why he is wasting his life on skiing, Chappellet reveals that he is racing as an amateur to become an Olympic champion. As the German approaches the final schuss, he crashes, and Chappellet becomes an Olympic gold medal champion. Reviews: Downhill Racer. Johnson was the first racer from a non-Alpine country to win an Olympic downhill race. In his review for Life magazine, Richard Schickel praised the film for both its esthetic beauty and its depiction of the brutal realities of competition. Mark and Aaron celebrate the Summer Olympics by exploring Downhill Racer, an independent film about the Winter Olympics. Redford soon persuaded novelist James Salter to write a screenplay for the film, introducing him to Polanski and his partner, Gene Gutowski, who agreed to work on the film. Raised in the small town of Idaho Springs, Colorado, Chappellet is a loner with a single-minded focus on becoming a skiing champion, and shows little interest in being a team player. Before meeting the local girl, Robert Redford is listening to a Denver, Colorado, based country music radio station. The fans fall quiet, and Chappellet takes notice of the German, watching nervously. At the start of the third season, he calls her from Megève asking to spend Christmas with him. At the Winter Olympics, with Austrian champion Max Meier in first place, Chappellet uncorks one of his best runs, beating Meier's time and ending up in first place with all the highly-ranked racers having already run. Both men were sent for by team coach Eugene Claire (Gene Hackman) to replace one of his top skiers Tommy Herb (Joe Jay Jalbert) who was recently injured during an FIS competition. Some of the best moments in "Downhill Racer" are moments during which nothing special seems to be happening. | Michael Ritchie Director. Alexander was also in a legal dispute to gain executive producer credit. Gene Hackman worked with him in "Prime Cut.". That summer, Chappellet joins the team in Oregon for off-season training, and visits his father at his home in Idaho Springs, but they have little to say to each other. In addition to praising the performances of Redford and Hackman, Ebert noted how well the film balanced the exciting action sequences and the less glamorous aspects of an athlete's life. Three weeks before the film was due to be shot, Paramount cancelled the film due to its $3.5 million budget but after reducing the budget, filming went ahead. Dating from 1969, Downhill Racer holds up remarkably well both as a character study and a visually impressive journey into the world of Olympic skiing. Schickel wrote: Abuk Sabuk 1 Film (1990)   |   51 Nevada (2018)   |   Daredreamer (1990)   |   Broadway to Hollywood (1933)   |   Inside Look: The People v. O.J. Downhill Racer is a quite significant journey out of my comfort zone because, as I've mentioned once or twice, I hate sports movies. Country USA. He develops a short-lived relationship with Carole Stahl, a glamorous European woman even more capricious than himself. The Criterion Collection DVD was released on November 17, 2009. Downhill Racer was released on DVD in Region 2 format on August 13, 2007 by Paramount Home Entertainment. Camilla Sparv Carole Stahl. Play Trailer; How fast must a man go to get from where he's at? The screenplay for Downhill Racer is loosely based on the 1963 novel The Downhill Racers by Oakley Hall. We use cookies to give you the best possible experience on our website. It was re-released in the U.S. in July 1984 at the FILMEX: Los Angeles International Film Exposition for a 50-hour Sports Movie Marathon on July 5–20. Although Robert Redford passed on Polanski's offer to star in both films, the young actor soon attached himself to the skiing film, taking it on as a pet project. The first USA skier to win an Olympic downhill medal was Bill Johnson, who won gold in 1984, 15 years after the release of the movie. Downhill Racer Critics Consensus. Two weeks before the Olympics, after a day of training at Wengen, Chappellet challenges Creech to a one-on-one race, and the two take off to the bottom as the coaches looks on in horror. Downhill Racer is a 1969 American sports drama film starring Robert Redford, Gene Hackman and Camilla Sparv, and was the directorial debut of Michael Ritchie. He is thronged by elated fans and teammates in the finish area. Written by James Salter, based on the 1963 novel The Downhill Racers by Oakley Hall, the film is about a talented downhill skier who joins the United States ski team in Europe to compete in international skiing competitions. At Kitzbühel, Chappellet wins the Hahnenkamm, but afterwards his cockiness alienates his teammates and his coach who feel he is only out for himself. Crazy Credits Neither the song nor the artist can be found online, so the song might have been written for the movie. The original inspiration for the character is said to be Colorado's Buddy Werner of Steamboat Springs, (Chappellet was said to be from Idaho Springs, Colorado). American downhill skier David Chappellet (Robert Redford) arrives in Wengen, Switzerland, to join the U.S. ski team, along with fellow newcomer D. K. Bryan (Kenneth Kirk). Downhill Racer was filmed on location in Kitzbühel and Sankt Anton am Arlberg in Austria, Wengen, Switzerland, Megève and Grenoble in France, and Boulder and Idaho Springs in Colorado, United States. Director Michael Richie's ("The Candidate") feature film debut. Simpson - American Crime Story (TV Series 2016). In late December 1968, Ritchie signed on as director. His roommate sums up his goals when he observes of David, "He's not for the team, and he never will be"; but precisely who the David is that David is so fiendishly striving for we're never to learn. IMDb, the world's most popular and authoritative source for movie, TV and celebrity content. In January 1968, Redford was named to produce and star and traveled with Salter to Grenoble and accompanied the U. S. ski team — traveling on buses, sleeping in hallways, taking in the atmosphere, and observing the athletes. Most of the skiing footage was shot from January 11 to February 1, 1969, during four World Cup races: Internationales Lauberhorn in Wengen, Internationales Hahnenkamm-Rennen in Kitzbühel, Grand Prix de Megève, and Arlberg-Kandahar in Sankt Anton am Arlberg. In his review for the Chicago Sun-Times, Roger Ebert gave the film four out of four stars, calling it "the best movie ever made about sports—without really being about sports at all." Chappellet is more interested in Machet's attractive assistant Carole Stahl (Camilla Sparv). Kathleen Crowley American Newspaper Woman. This is a film with little conflict. Sylvester Stallone appeared in one scene as an extra in his film debut. He was known for a reckless style but broke his leg in training two months before the 1960 Winter Olympics at Squaw Valley in which he would have been a favorite for a medal in the downhill. American locations were filmed in Idaho Springs, Colorado, and around Golden, Colorado.". An ambitious young skier, determined to break all existing records, is contemptuous of the teamwork advocated by the US coach when they go … On review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes, the film holds an approval rating of 85% based on 26 reviews, with an average rating of 7.13/10. Awards & Events. After attempts to develop the project stalled, the new head of Paramount production, Robert Evans, used the project to entice Roman Polanski, a skiing enthusiast, to direct the film Rosemary's Baby for the studio. Jim McMullan Johnny Creech. Downhill Racer HD IMDB: 6.4 An ambitious young skier, determined to break all existing records, is contemptuous of the teamwork advocated by the US coach when they go to Europe for the Olympics. | Despite Paramount's intention, some studio publicity was released crediting Hall. After a brief confrontation, he realizes their relationship is over. During the off-season, Chappellet and Carole continue to see each other. Dating from 1969, Downhill Racer holds up remarkably well both as a character study and a visually impressive journey into the world of Olympic skiing. "Downhill Racer", directed by the debuting Michael Ritchie, is a low-keyed character study masquerading as a sports film--and yet the skiing action is what most viewers end up remembering. Another 5 nominations. Redford, however, saw the Chappellet character as being more like Spider Sabich, the dynamic skier from rural California, who finished fifth that year in the slalom. Quotes | downhill race. In appreciating that world, its pathos, its narcissism, its tensions, and its sufficient moments of glory, Downhill Racer succeeds with sometimes chilling efficiency.". Afterwards, he shows little interest in the girl's feelings. While the character ultimately took on aspects of both role models, Salter's original scenes of tense dynamics between Chappellet and the coach survived the writing process. With Robert Redford, Gene Hackman, Camilla Sparv, Karl Michael Vogler. Parts of the film were also shot at Sundance in Utah. Won 1 BAFTA Film Award. Written by James Salter, based on the 1963 novel The Downhill Racers by Oakley Hall, the film is about a talented downhill skier who joins the United States ski team in Europe to compete in international skiing competitions. After a chance encounter at a bakery, he and Carole spend some time with each other. Coming from a background of rural poverty, he is fiercely determined to achieve fame and fortune. The interior scenes of Chappellet's Idaho Springs house were filmed at Paramount Studios in southern California. Downhill Racer was filmed on location in Wengen and Unterseen Switzerland, Kitzbühel and Sankt Anton am Arlberg in Austria, Megève and Grenoble in France, and Boulder and Idaho Springs in Colorado, United States. Criterion Collection: Downhill Racer | Blu-ray Review - IMDb Menu Downhill Racer, Movie, 1969 Pictures provided by: Raul1983 , mike962 Display options: Display as images Display as list Make and model Make and year Year Category Importance/Role Date added (new ones first) Episode Appearance (ep.+time, if avail.) They're moments devoted to capturing the angle of a glance, the curve of a smile, an embarrassed silence. What to Watch Latest Trailers IMDb TV IMDb Originals IMDb Picks IMDb Podcasts. On the way down, Chappellet forces Creech into the stone wall of a narrow-arched bridge (Jungfrau railway overpass Wasserstation), and Creech barely escapes injury. The German makes his way to the finish area, and Chappellet looks into his eyes briefly before being carried off in victory. Quietly cocky Robert Redford joins U.S. ski team as downhill racer and clashes with the team's coach, played by Gene Hackman. Robert Redford, in the title role, plays an egotistical loner aiming for Olympic Gold. Werner burst upon the downhill racing scene in Europe in the late 1950s and was the first American to win an F.I.S. Movie Drama "Downhill Racer" Torrent is rated with 6.2 points out of 10 on IMDb (Internet Movie Database) according to 42 ratings by critics. Robert Redford David Chappellet. Quietly cocky Robert Redford joins U.S. ski team as downhill racer and clashes with the team's coach, played by Gene Hackman. Coming from a background of rural poverty, he is fiercely determined to achieve fame and fortune. For the film, the "sheriff" is the lead racer on the team who breaks his leg, and Chappellet is called in to replace him. Redford really just exists as a force of charisma… A rare theater book listed that he was in this film. Downhill Racer (1969) David Chappellet is a mean-spirited skier, who profits from another skier's injury to gain a spot on the American Olympic team. Downhill Racer (1969). Before the lawsuit, Paramount had already deleted reference to Hall in advertising and on screen and sought an injunction from Hall interfering with distribution and claiming the film was based on his book. Focusing on the preliminaries to reach the Olympics for the speed skiing event, it tells the story of a hotshot from middle America (Redford) trying to make it his way. Salter's inspiration for the character was the 1964 Olympic silver medal winner Billy Kidd of Vermont, who conveyed an "arrogant and aloof" quality. Overview. Director Michael Ritchie's (The Golden Child) debut film is a tense and taut look at the world of Olympic skiing. Connections Gene Hackman Eugene Claire. I love sports but I hate sports movies. After refusing to race at the Lauberhorn because of a late starting position, he makes his European skiing debut at the Arlberg-Kandahar in Austria, where he finishes in an impressive fourth position. His roommate sums up his goals when he observes of David, "He's not for the team, and he never will be"; but precisely who the David is that David is so fiendishly striving for we're never to learn. Redford later revived the project by pitching the story to Gulf+Western owner Charles Bluhdorn. Back in France that winter, Chappellet wins the Grand Prix de Megève in France and soon attracts the attention of Machet (Karl Michael Vogler), a ski manufacturer who wants Chappellet to use his skis for the advertising value. The movie's poster was ranked as #4 of "The 25 Best Movie Posters Ever" by Premiere ( August 2016). Soundtracks, Debut theatrical feature film directed by director, According to the American Film Institute, "racing footage in the film is a mixture of real races (held at Kitzbuhel, Austria, during February and March, 1969) and scenes staged by the company on location in Kitzbuhel and Wengen, Switzerland. Chappellet's identity trouble are exacerbated by the fact that he is an "Event" as well as a personality; and more astute minds than his own have difficulty where the one leaves off and the other takes over. Together they form a portrait of a man that is so complete, and so tragic, that "Downhill Racer" becomes the best movie ever made about sports -- without really being about … Inside Look: The People v. O.J. Downhill Racer is a 1969 American drama film directed by Michael Ritchie and starring Robert Redford, Gene Hackman, and Camilla Sparv. Mayo responds, "Well it's not exactly a team sport, is it?" The next day, during the Lauberhorn race, Creech is seriously injured during his run, leaving Chappellet as the team's best hope for an Olympic gold medal. In the final race of the season at the Hahnenkamm-Rennen in Kitzbühel, Austria, he crashes. Salter's starting point for the story was provided by Polanski, who told the writer that the film should be a modern-day High Noon, where the sheriff is killed and someone is called in to replace him. Robert Redford, in the title role, plays an egotistical loner aiming for Olympic Gold. Writing about the lead character David Chappellet, Greenspun observed, "His world is that international society of the well-exercised inarticulate where the good is known as 'really great,' and the bad is signified by silence. As director Michael Ritchie admired the work of British director Ken Loach, Ritchie hired Brian Probyn and Kevin Sutton, the cameraman and sound man from Loach's film Poor Cow. Movies. The website's critics consensus reads, "Downhill Racer plunges the viewer thrillingly into the action of the sport -- and continues to hold the attention as a thoughtful drama." His father observes, "The world's full of 'em.". IMDb, the world's most popular and authoritative source for movie, TV and celebrity content. He travels to Zurich to Machet's office to find her, but learns she is spending Christmas with her family. Chappellet finishes the season with several impressive victories ensuring his place on next season's Olympic team. Hall filed a counterclaim against Paramount. With Robert Redford, Gene Hackman, Camilla Sparv, Karl Michael Vogler. In 1969, a $6 million lawsuit was filed by Buck Holland and Jan Schimmel claiming that the film was based on their story Devil On His Hills, which they gave to Redford, and requesting Paramount to stop referring to the film being based on Hall's book. DOWNHILL RACER is probably the most subtle of the group. Werner died in an avalanche in Switzerland in 1964, while performing for a film crew. As Stallone was only an extra, he has no billing in the credits, and this book is now a very rare collectors' item. Cast and crew. 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