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This was one of those little movies in the early 1980s that had to struggle to reach audiences because the studios weren't sure how to market it. That's a shame because it had in Bonnie Bedelia an appealingly gritty leading lady. She plays real-life drag-race driver Shirley Muldowney in a biopic about Muldowney's uphill fight to make it in what was at that point a man's sport. Beside battling sexist attitudes, Muldowney also has to cope with issues of career-vs.-family, as well as the struggle between romance and competition when she falls for another driver (Beau Bridges). Heart Like a Wheel was directed by Jonathan Kaplan, who seems to have made a career of films that have trouble making it to the marketplace. --Marshall Fine
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