[Quick Summary: After a series of failures, a 1920s daredevil pilot tries to regain his confidence by flying for the movies.]
This script had everything going for it!
Airplane chases! Romance! Death! Envy! An underdog!
So why do I feel so ... lukewarm about it?
I suppose it's because I was so invested in Waldo and Mary Beth.
Mary Beth is a challenging, spunky counterpoint to Waldo, and brings out the best in him.
Unfortunately, she's killed off approximately 2/3 into the script. For the last 1/3, it seems as if she never even existed.
Without that relationship, Waldo seems less accessible.
Frankly, I just lost heart in his journey.
WHAT I'VE LEARNED: It's a tricky balance to know when to kill off a character.
Just make sure you have a really good reason.
(And repeating it again in the last 1/3 wouldn't hurt.)
The Great Waldo Pepper (1975)
Script by William Goldman
Story by George Roy Hill