The Great Waldo Pepper

1975

Adventure / Drama

5
Rotten Tomatoes Critics - Certified Fresh 71%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Spilled 55%
IMDb Rating 6.6 10 4712

Synopsis


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September 23, 2017 at 01:05 AM

Cast

Robert Redford as Waldo Pepper
Susan Sarandon as Mary Beth
Edward Herrmann as Ezra Stiles
Margot Kidder as Maude
720p.BLU 1080p.BLU
763.94 MB
1280*544
English
NR
23.976 fps
1hr 47 min
P/S 3 / 1
1.61 GB
1920*816
English
NR
23.976 fps
1hr 47 min
P/S 1 / 3

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by jlthornb51 2 / 10

Nice Airplanes but the Rest of the Film is Absolutely Stupid!

Despite the period detail and the wonderful detail regarding aircraft, this is one awful film. The acting is wooden, the plot ridiculous, and overall, the whole thing is a disaster. Enjoy the vintage airplanes, the stunts, and the period detail and try to ignore the rest. I saw this in the theater when it was first released and I remember at the time wondering, "What the hell was the point?" So ludicrous it was hard to stay in the theater at the time, the characters so shallow and silly that no one could accept them as anything but cardboard cutouts, the script one of this writer's worst, and this director's nadir, there is absolutely no reason to sit through this turkey. Except for the aircraft and the fact Frank Tallman did the flying. Try your best to pay no attention to the rest of the movie.

Reviewed by bkoganbing 8 / 10

When the airplane was a big toy

Robert Redford got one of his best roles in The Great Waldo Pepper which was directed by George Roy Hill who did right by him with Butch Cassidy And The Sundance Kid and The Sting. It does a wonderful job of capturing a bygone era of the Twenties when after World War I, the airplane was a big toy played with by some big kids.

The airplane got invented just in time for use in the war to end all wars. But no one figured out quite what to do with it. In point of fact it didn't have the capacity to drop bombs on the enemy to do that much damage. In the trench warfare days the real function was scouting those enemy lines to see and report on troop dispositions. But the other side did the same thing. So when they met dogfights happened. They were colorful and exciting, but didn't really do much militarily.

Aces got their reputations like the real life Baron Von Richtofen and Hermann Goering and the fictional Ernest Kessler as played by Bo Brundin here. Waldo Pepper in the Great War came up too late to show his stuff even though his former squadron leader Geoffrey Lewis says he was the most natural flier he ever saw. He had a brief encounter with Brundin days before the Armistice where Brundin let him off. He never got a chance to prove himself.

Now he proves himself every day in the various flying circuses doing daredevil stunts. People who fly do it for the love it and won't be happy going 9 to 5 on the ground. Redford is at the height of his abilities and this is his frustration that he never got to show his stuff in the arena where it really counted. Redford did a wonderful job in fleshing this aspect of his character.

But his world is changing, if the military has put aviation on hold there are lots of commercial uses. And a guy named Herbert Hoover who Secretary of Commerce at that time spearheaded the creation of the Civil Aeronautics Agency to regulate air traffic. Airplanes would be hauling mail and people and would soon be large enough to haul freight. Not a world that calls for daredevil daring.

The Great Waldo Pepper is one of Robert Redford's best films and roles. The Great Robert Redford has this part really nailed down. Some other folks in the cast are a tragic Edward Herrmann who hasn't got the skill as a pilot that Redford has and shows it. Susan Sarandon plays a budding wing walker who also perishes tragically in one of her early roles. George Roy Hill assembled a great supporting cast to back up Redford.

In the end it's Redford who makes The Great Waldo Pepper great.

Reviewed by vincentlynch-moonoi 6 / 10

Not one of Redford's best...unless you're into flying films

I've long been impressed with the variety of films in which Robert Redford starred during his prime years. He took chances tackling roles that few others would accept, and there was always a sense of quality in his films.

That being said, it almost seems as if this film didn't quite know what it wanted to be. A sort of light-hearted look at stunt pilots? Well, that's in there. A serious look at the psyche of aerial daredevils? Well, that's in there, too. The first half of the film and the last half of the film seem almost like different stories. The most interesting part of the film is the relationship that develops between Waldo Pepper (Redford) and a German flying ace from World War I; but again, what exactly is the point. Oh, and yes, some of the flying is quite stunning. I couldn't help but think how differently this film would be made today with all the computerized special effects. However, from my perspective, it's quite a depressing film...including the ending.

There's certainly nothing wrong with the acting here. Robert Redford is flyer Waldo Pepper, and is very believable in the role. Bo Svenson, no favorite of mine, is quite good here as another stunt flyer. Bo Brundin is interesting as the clearly moody German air ace. I never cared much for Susan Sarandon, but she does well here as the slightly ditzy girlfriend of one or both of the American stunt pilots. Geoffrey Lewis, a reliable character actor, does well here, as he pretty much always did. Edward Herrmann has a somewhat small role, and is almost unidentifiable; this seems before he was typecast in later roles.

I have quite a few favorite Robert Redford films, but this is not one I want to watch again. Once in 1975 and once in 2015 is plenty for me. Of course, if you are into aeronautics, you might warm up to this film more than I did.

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