title: RED LINE 7000
year: 1965
cast: James Caan
director: Howard Hawks
rating: ****

The greatest banal film ever made. I enjoyed every damn minute of it. It's dated, it's silly, and it's awesome. Cutting back and forth from stock car racing shots (never sure who's in the lead) to the "behind-the-scenes" dramas as the fickle, egotistical racers play upon a bevy of gorgeous, and troubled, female admirers. The funny thing is, you actually get into the life of these guys (and gals) more than most of the big-budget car race flicks made since. Howard Hawks does a whole lot with very little (no surprise!). And James Caan is a treat in a very natural performance, so laid-back you forget he's in an "old movie": reminiscent of the non-acting-acting style of Marlon Brando (who would be his "(god)father" a few years later). Terrific, unpretentious fun, worthy of its endearing cult status. And I realize that most women are beautiful in movies - which is WHY they're in movies - but these girls are SOMETHING ELSE ENTIRELY.

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