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The Big Wheel (1949)

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Release Date: Nov 4, 1949 Wide

audience

17

liked it
Average Rating: 2.8/5
User Ratings: 45

My Rating

Movie Info

In The Big Wheel, Mickey Rooney plays Billy Coy, a garage mechanic who matriculates into a champion race-car driver. On the way to the top, he steps on friends and foes alike. He even manages to briefly alienate his saintly mother (Spring Byington). The cocky Coy eventually kills another racer when he forgets that gas and alcohol don't mix. It takes some doing, but Billy finally redeems himself. The climax blends stock footage of the Indianapolis 500 with newly-lensed racing sequences. The Big

Unrated,

Drama, Action & Adventure, Classics

Oct 3, 2000

Synergy Entertainment

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All Critics (1) | Fresh (0) | Rotten (1) | DVD (1)

More suited for fans of race car driving than others.

December 26, 2004 Full Review Source: Ozus' World Movie Reviews
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

Audience Reviews for The Big Wheel

The first picture of Mickey's decline from stardom after the previous year's Words and Music where his terrible performance pretty much ended his tenure at MGM. It's fitting that it's a racing movie because it's a skid picture for the Mick without question. After years of the plush surroundings at Metro this low budget loser must have come as a rude shock. He's overly earnest as was typical of his starring career which was endurable in parts where he was the brash teenage Andy Hardy and similar roles but as he aged became arch and annoying. The story is standard cocky hothead knocked down a few pegs until his learns the necessary life lessons junk but if you're a race fan and don't mind the obvious rear projection shots it a certain entertainment value. What's great about these old Hollywood films is that even in an economy production like this the film is full of quality character actors who had more latitude in moving between studios, genres and types of productions. This one has a supporting cast better than it deserves with three greats in the cast, Spring Byington, Thomas Mitchell and in a small part Hattie McDaniel, this was her last theatrical feature.
July 30, 2013
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jay nixon

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