Charles Lindbergh, 'Lucky Lindy', made the world's first solo transatlantic flight in 1927. Either this is Wilder's most cynical picture or his most purely affirmative one, as he takes the notoriously aloof, pro-Nazi aviator and magics him into the person of good ol' Jimmy Stewart, just plain folks, bumbling along against all odds, triumphing almost by accident, or perhaps with a little help from the Lord. The narrative is non-chronological but very simple: raising the cash, building the plane, flying the flight. It's quite engrossing, with the period trappings lovingly presented. Perhaps that was the project's real attraction for Wilder: the 1920s, an era he seems drawn to above all others.
The Spirit of St. Louis
Cast and crew
|Screenwriter:||Billy Wilder, Wendell Mayes, Charles Lederer|