My wife and I saw the HD version of Grand Prix
for the first time yesterday afternoon.
(Our display device is an HP-3330f-driven RS1. We sit about 8' from a 10' diagonal, 16x9 Dalite high power screen, and we listen to spdif 5.1 connected to a Denon 5800, Paradigm studio 100 fronts, servo 15 sub, and Paradigm center and surrounds.)
In short, the pq of this movie is the best I've seen for movies of that era and is equal to, or better than, many more recent releases.
Audio is commendable for a movie of this era.
I hate the herky jerky camera work that is so "popular" nowadays, so it was very nice and comfortable to once again enjoy a movie shot with rock-steady cameras (not for the racing scenes, of course.)
To me, this was a pretty much non-political movie that attempted to shine some light on a short period in the lives of a few race car drivers and their then-current companions. It was nice to see the characters slowly reveal their personalities. The pace of this revelation was as close to reality as one can expect for a movie not of indefinite length.
We found the drivers' descriptions of their experiences, as the various races were ongoing, to be quite insightful and, for outsiders, informative and believable.
We thought the actors chosen for the roles were more than appropriate.
If there is such a thing as a peak in the handsomeness, or beauty, of an actor in his/her career, the cameras captured James Garner's peak in this movie. (I'm not gay, but looking at Garner, I could finally appreciate why someone might come to be!
The movie is more about car racing's people than about racing, and it is the characters' interpersonal relationships that will allow this movie to remain timeless (unlike its actors, unhappily) and survive its journey into the future as a very enjoyable film.
For those that want racing, forget about this movie. Just watch next weekend's advertisement-obscured F1 race, or, for that matter, any one of the almost infinite number of recordings of such past events - it makes no difference which.