PG | | Biography, Drama, Sport
Two British track athletes, one a determined Jew, and the other a devout Christian, compete in the 1924 Olympics.
Producer David Puttnam arranged a screening of this movie for Eric Liddell's widow. Afterwards, she said she loved the movie, and that it fully captured her husbands character. However, she felt that the only thing they got wrong was that her husband was a much more graceful runner that was shown. Puttnam was astonished. He said the only thing they really knew about Liddle when making this movie was his running style (from newsreel films of the era). The one thing he was fully confident that they had gotten right was the only thing Mrs. Liddell felt was wrong.
Lord Andrew Lindsay:
Let us praise famous men and our fathers that begat us. All these men were honoured in their generations and were a glory in their days. We are here today to give thanks for the life of Harold Abrahams. To honour the legend. Now there are just two ...
Before the 400 m race, the crowd can be heard chanting "U-S-A!" Although some have believed this to be an anachronism, it was in fact a common cheer for American teams at international sporting events in the early 20th century. For example, in Leni Riefenstahl's documentary series "Olympia", American spectators are heard using the "U-S-A!" chant to cheer on Jesse Owens at the 1936 Berlin Olympics.
There is at least one slightly different version of the movie, issued in Europe on homevideo. The beginning is different - shorter - and introduces Harold Abrahams while playing cricket with his colleagues. The scene in the train station, where Monty meets Harold is absent, as well as the loading of the baggage in the taxi they share. We simply see Monty writing a letter to his parents, mentioning that "Harold is as intense as ever" (cut to the cricket scene, maybe 30 seconds long), and then continues with "I remember our first day... we shared a taxi together" (cut to the two students unloading their stuff from the car). This alternate version also have slightly different end credits, and does not mention Harold marrying Sybil. The differences are minor (the U.S. version provides a more shocking memento of WWI, when it shows crippled baggage handlers in the station); one of the reasons the cricket scene was dropped in favour of the station one was due to the distributor's worry that the American market would not understand it.
$68,907 (USA) (27 September 1981)
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