Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Sydney Pollack|
|Produced by||Sydney Pollack|
|Screenplay by||Alvin Sargent|
|Based on||Heaven Has No Favorites
by Erich Maria Remarque
|Music by||Dave Grusin|
|Edited by||Fredric Steinkamp|
|Running time||124 minutes|
|Box office||$9,300,000 (USA)|
Bobby Deerfield is a 1977 American romantic drama film directed by Sidney Pollack and starring Al Pacino and Marthe Keller. Loosely based on the 1961 novel Heaven Has No Favorites by Erich Maria Remarque, the film is about a famous American race car driver on the European circuit who falls in love with an enigmatic Swiss woman who is terminally ill. For his performance in the film, Al Pacino was nominated for a Golden Globe for Best Motion Picture Actor.
Formula One auto racer Bobby Deerfield is a calculating, control-obsessed loner who has become used to winning the checkered flag on the track. But after he witnesses a fiery crash that kills a teammate and seriously wounds a competitor, Deerfield becomes unsettled by the spectre of death.
During a visit to the survivor, Deerfield's world is further set askew when he meets Lillian Morelli (Marthe Keller), a quirky, impulsive woman racing against time.
- Al Pacino as Bobby
- Marthe Keller as Lillian
- Anny Duperey as Lydia
- Walter McGinn as The Brother
- Romolo Valli as Uncle Luigi
- Stephan Meldegg as Karl Holtzmann
- Jaime Sánchez as Delvecchio
- Norm Nielsen as The Magician
- Mickey Knox as Tourist
- Dorothy James as Tourist
- Guido Alberti as Priest in the Garden
- Monique Lejeune as Catherine Modave
- Steve Gadler as Bertrand Modave
- Van Doude as The Flutist
- Aurora Maris as Woman in the Gas Station
- Gérard Hernandez as Carlos Del Montanaro
- Maurice Vallier as Priest
- Antonino Faa Di Bruno as Vincenzo
- André Valardy as Autograph Hound
- Féodor Atkine as Tommy (as Fédor Atkine)
- Patrick Floersheim as Mario
- Bernie Pollack as Head Mechanic
- Al Silvani as Mechanic
- Isabelle de Blonay as Nurse
- Franco Ressel as Man with Dog
- Dominique Briand as Reporter
Critics panned Bobby Deerfield as an over-the-top melodrama with a plodding story line; audiences reportedly laughed at scenes intended to be dramatic. Race-film fans, expecting another Grand Prix or Le Mans, were disappointed that the story did not play out on the race track; however, the action footage was filmed by racing cinematographers over the course of the 1976 Formula One season and features actual drivers, including Carlos Pace, Tom Pryce, James Hunt, Patrick Depailler and Mario Andretti. Vincent Canby of The New York Times said that it "may turn out to be the year's most cynical movie made by people who know better, including Sydney Pollack, the director, and Alvin Sargent, who wrote the screenplay."
Critics continue to give the film negative reviews and the film has 22% on Rotten Tomatoes. Time Out stated that the film is a "classic example of a Hollywood director being struck down by a lethal 'art' attack as soon as he sets foot in Europe."
Bobby Deerfield grossed $9,300,000 in the United States.
Awards and nominations
- 1978 Golden Globe Award Nomination for Best Motion Picture Actor, Drama (Al Pacino)
Differences from the novel
Remarque's novel on which the screenplay is based is far different from the movie, taking place just after World War II. The Swiss town of Leukerbad makes no mention of the on-location filming that took place there.
- "Bobby Deerfield". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved August 5, 2013.
- "Bobby Deerfield". Internet Movie Database. Retrieved January 23, 2012.
- "Awards for Bobby Deerfield". Internet Movie Database. Retrieved January 23, 2012.
- "Full cast and crew of Bobby Deerfield". Internet Movie Database. Retrieved January 23, 2012.