When a skier is injured in a fall, David Chappellet, an ambitious downhill racer from Colorado, gains a coveted place in the United States team.
Despite hostility from his father and a string of emotional entanglements, Chappellet is willing to gamble his life to attain his ultimate goal.
This skiing potboiler from Robert Redford’s production company, Wildwood, has the whiff of vanity about it. Redford stars as the handsome, egocentric skier who is groomed as Olympic champion by hard-headed coach Gene Hackman (who later complained of feeling like “a high-priced extra”).
Inevitably, there is a girl (Camilla Sparv, former wife of Paramount chief Robert Evans), but the racing takes precedence over the plot, and the appeal of the film, directed by Michael Ritchie (making his feature debut) lies in the well-handled action sequences.
Joe Jay Jalbert
Karl Michael Vogler