Breaking Away (1979)

Breaking Away (1979)

Best friends Dave, Mike, Cyril and Moocher have just graduated from high school. Living in the college town of Bloomington, Indiana, they are considered “cutters”: the working class of the town so named since most of the middle aged generation, such as their parents, worked at the local limestone quarry, which is now a swimming hole.

There is great animosity between the cutters and the generally wealthy Indiana University students, each group who have their own turf in town. The dichotomy is that the limestone was used to build the university, which is now seen as being too good for the locals who built it. Although each of the four is a totally different personality from the other three, they also have in common the fact of being unfocused and unmotivated in life. The one slight exception is Dave. Although he has no job and doesn’t know what to do with his life, he is a champion bicycle racer.

Breaking Away is a 1979 American coming of age comedy-drama film produced and directed by Peter Yates and written by Steve Tesich. It follows a group of four male teenagers in Bloomington, Indiana, who have recently graduated from high school. The film stars Dennis Christopher, Dennis Quaid, Daniel Stern, Jackie Earle Haley, Barbara Barrie, Paul Dooley and Robyn Douglass.

Breaking Away won the 1979 Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay for Tesich, and received nominations in four other categories, including Best Picture. It also won the 1979 Golden Globe Award for Best Film (Comedy or Musical), and received nominations in three other Golden Globe categories.

As the film’s young lead, Christopher won the 1979 BAFTA Award for Most Promising Newcomer and the 1979 Young Artist Award for Best Juvenile Actor, as well as getting a Golden Globe nomination as New Star of the Year.

The film is ranked eighth on the List of America’s 100 Most Inspiring Movies compiled by the American Film Institute (AFI) in 2006. In June 2008, AFI announced its “Ten top Ten”—the best ten films in ten classic American film genres—after polling over 1,500 people from the creative community. Breaking Away ranked as the eighth best film in the sports genre. Tesich was an alumnus of Indiana University Bloomington. The film was shot in and around Bloomington and on the university’s campus.

Breaking Away Movie Poster (1979)

Breaking Away (1979)

Directed by: Peter Yates
Starring: Dennis Christopher, Dennis Quaid, Daniel Stern, Jackie Earle Haley, Barbara Barrie, Paul Dooley, Hart Bochner, Amy Wright
Screenplay by: Steve Tesich
Cinematography by: Matthew F. Leonetti
Film Editing by: Cynthia Scheider
Costume Design by: Betsy Cox
Set Decoration by: Lee Poll
Distributed by: 20th Century Fox
Release Date: July 13, 1979

The Deer Hunter (1978)

The Deer Hunter (1978)

Michael, Steven and Nick are young factory workers from Pennsylvania who enlist into the Army to fight in Vietnam. Before they go, Steven marries the pregnant Angela, and their wedding party also serves as the men’s farewell party. After some time and many horrors, the three friends fall in the hands of the Vietcong and are brought to a prison camp in which they are forced to play Russian roulette against each other. Michael makes it possible for them to escape, but they soon get separated again.

The Deer Hunter is a 1978 American epic war drama film co-written and directed by Michael Cimino about a trio of Russian American steelworkers and their service in the Vietnam War. The film stars Robert De Niro, Christopher Walken, John Savage, John Cazale (in his final role), Meryl Streep, and George Dzundza. The story takes place in Clairton, a small working class town on the Monongahela River south of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and then in Vietnam and in Saigon, during the Vietnam War.

The film was based in part on an unproduced screenplay called The Man Who Came to Play by Louis Garfinkle and Quinn K. Redeker, about Las Vegas and Russian roulette. Producer Michael Deeley, who bought the script, hired writer/director Michael Cimino who, with Deric Washburn, rewrote the script, taking the Russian roulette element and placing it in the Vietnam War. The film went over-budget and over-schedule, and ended up costing $15 million. The scenes of Russian roulette were highly controversial on release.

The film won five Academy Awards, including Best Picture, Best Director for Michael Cimino, and Best Supporting Actor for Christopher Walken, and was named by the American Film Institute as the 53rd greatest American film of all time in the 10th Anniversary Edition of the AFI’s 100 Years… 100 Movies list. In 1996, The Deer Hunter was selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as being “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant”.

The Deer Hunter Movie Poster (1978)

The Deer Hunter (1978)

Directed by: Michael Cimino
Oyuncular: Robert De Niro, Christopher Walken, John Cazale, John Savage, Meryl Streep, George Dzundza, Rutanya Alda, Amy Wright
Screenplay by: Deric Washburn
Cinematography by: Vilmos Zsigmond
Film Editing by: Peter Zinner
Art Direction by: Ron Hobbs, Kim Swados
Music by: Stanley Myers
Distributed by: Universal Pictures
Release Date: February 23, 1979