Car Movie Enthusiast Reviews

Ranking

Title and Review
Diamonds are Forever: 1971.

007 Sean Connery drives his 71 Mustang fastback on 2 wheels to elude the cops.

Certainly one of the worst Connery Bond films.

  Damnation Alley. 1977.

Jan Michael Vincent and Georgje Peppard (joined by the delectable French actress Dominique Sanda - who of course ends up in a shower scene) have to drive across post-apocalyptic America on a mission. The nuclear war has resulting in the Earth tilting on it's axis and the environment is so messed up that even Al Gore wouldn't know what to do. Pretty predictable stuff, which the modern SyFy channel productions would very easily eclipse. The original book, by Roger Zelazny, was much better and predates the movie by ten years.

The $17M dollar movie had abominably poor production standards, but for driving enthusiasts the star of the movie was the Landmaster. The 12-wheel armor-proof truck was perfectly made for the end of the world and is the real star of the film. Even able to handle giant scorpions, and of course the obligatory mutant former humans.

The Landmaster was built by Dean Jeffries at Jeffries Automotive in Universal City, California. It uses 12 fully functional and articulated wheels, with the idea that should a tire be lost another can be rotated into place. It's also amphibious, although this capability was portrayed in the film with special effects and a cheesy tiny model. But the rest of the shots are of the real thing, built in 1976 for the film at a cost of $350,000 USD. The Landmaster survived to appear in several events on the car show circuit, but our understanding is that it is currently in disrepair after vandals damaged it. You may have seen the Landmaster in shows years ago and you may even have seen in on the streets of California since at one time it was licensed for street use.

Visit the definitive Landmaster page here.

 

  Daredevil Drivers. 1938.

We're looking for a copy of this film.

 

Days and Nights in the Forest: 1969.

I've been told this was an inspiration behind "American Graffiti".  Not available.

  Days of Thunder: 1990.

Unspeakably terrible!!! Ruined the stock car racing image.

Impossible scenes, events which could not happen under any circumstances in the history of NASCAR.

Basically just another Tom Cruise ego-centric show-off film.

Don't even bother.

Deadline Auto Theft. 1983.

Another H.B. Halicki film. Unknown story line. This is a very obscure film,

  Dead End Drive In. 1986. Australian.

The Government. has a new plan for dealing with problem teens: lure them into the local drive in and never let them leave. Some drama, some satire. Set in the near term future when apparently society has fallen apart (a common theme in Australian action movies).

Dead Pool, The: 1988.

The last (and 5th) Dirty Harry film, notable for a killer radio controlled model car filled with explosives - chasing Harry across the hills of San Francisco!. This scene might be a parody of Bullitt - I hope not.

Oddly, both Jim Carrey and Liam Neeson are in the cast.

The Worst Death Race 2000. 1975.

So terrible it's somehow not too bad at all... this is the kind of gift you give/receive at a white elephant party. In a dystopic future where the most popular sport is a cross-country race to the death (with extra points given for victims - and the most innocent the better the points), Carridine and Stallone have a personal grudge.

This is a very low-budget film, so most of the stunt cars are hopped up VWs and unfortunately it usually shows. Also the obligatory 'vette (you just can't do a cheesy film like this without a 'vette!), Most of the money was spent on a neat matte painting of a futuristic New York in the year 2000 - complete with roads raised many stories on spectacular arches!

If you haven't seen this film, we'd venture a guess that you also never went to a drive-in because these go hand-in-hand.

  • Starring: David Carridine, Sylvester Stallone
  • Label: New Horizons Roger Corman Classics
  • Director: Roger Corman
  • Year: 1975
  • Color
  • Format: DVD; VHS - NTSC
  • Available: yes

 

The Worst Death Race. 2008.

Jason Statham. Terrible remake, featuring one of the ugliest Mustangs you could ever imagine. Totally worthless... sole point is to get another $10 million or so in Statham's bank account.

 

Devil on Wheels, The. 1949.

We haven't seen this one.

  Devil's Hairpin, The. 1957.

Directed by and stars Cornel Wilde. Also starring is Jean Wallace, just before her decline.

After a year of searching, we finally have a copy of this film. Review coming soon!

 

Dirty Mary, Crazy Larry. 1974.

Peter Fonda. A great cross-country chase, with a really bad ending. For some reason people keep on arguing with us that this is a car chase masterpiece of some sorts... it's apparently a must-have if you are a late-sixties early-seventies muscle car nut. 

 

Dragstrip Riot (original title) (re-released as "The Reckless Age") 1958.

An unusual '50s schlock rock n' roll movie in that the turfs of bike riders and car drivers come to conflict. After a biker is accidentally murdered (by being forced off a cliff!), "fast livin' dragstrip hounds" battle it out for truth, justice, and road-going supremacy. Of course the movie is liberally cast with what's termed as "dungaree dolls". The fighting includes a non-standard game of chicken: two cars parked on a railroad track waiting for the train to come and the first one who starts his car and is off the tracks is the winner (don't try this at home!). Oddly, the "dragstrip" racing only includes road course racing and most of the fighting is between car drivers.

Cast includes Connie Stevens and a bunch of nobodies. Nonetheless, the action is good and this one needs to be in our collection. Unfortunately, it's not available new on any format although some used copies can be found on VHS.

 

Driver, The: 1978.

Ryan O'Neal, Bruce Dern. Bruce is the cop (in an abrupt turnabout type of role for him, although as usual he is without any redeeming virtue) who is obsessed with catching getaway driver Ryan. Bruce claims this is the 2nd best car film Hollywood has ever made (I would not agree). Good cop chase scenes.  It was written and directed by Walter Hill (his 2nd film - later made 48 Hours and Last man Standing), who was a second unit Director on Bullitt 9 years earlier. It probably doesn't rate as high as the "B" List - the driving is good, although the plot and character development isn't there.

  Drive. 2011. Ryan Gosling.

Suggested by the publicists as an 80's style noir, seen by others as an action flick, in our view it is somewhere in between and definitively appealing. Ryan Gosling is a Hollywood stunt driver, whose past constantly returns to haunt him, and who uses his skills for crimes on the side. But of course wants to quit. When the right woman comes along, with a kid, trouble ensues. Good role for Gosling, where emotions are not required. Interesting roles here too for supporting players Albert Brooks and Ron Perlman as interesting crooks.  

Adapted from a novel by crime writer James Sallis, who also wrote a sequel.

  Drive a Crooked Road. 1954.

Mickey Rooney is an auto mechanic who wants to be a race car driver. Instead, a bad girlfriend forces him into crime.

Not available in any format.

The Worst Driven. 2001.

Very likely the single worst racing film ever made. Opened on April 27th 2001, Renny Harlin directed. Starring (written and produced by) Sylvester Stallone.

This is indeed almost bad as Days of Thunder. The special effects are unbelievably bad. The plot is ludicrous. The acting is beyond bad. Don't waste your money here.

  Drive-In. 1976.

Set in Texas, it's all about a night at a drive in theatre with all the usual stereotypes and events. Campy, not worthwhile.

Driving Miss Daisy: 1989.

A nice restored car.

  Dude, Where's My Car. 2001.

After a night of getting stoned, two kids loose their car and have to retrace their night to find it.

Very poor film, with numerous drug references. All the cool internet marketing can't make up for the lousy storyline.

Duel. 1971.

Dennis Weaver plays a business driving through the lonely southwest. A mad trucker chases him down and the two do battle over many miles of dusty back road.

Good cinematography, better yet that Steven Spielberg was behind it in his first notable film!

  Dukes of Hazzard, The. 2005.

Poor remake of the TV show, with Johnny Knoxville (consuming at least 10 minutes of his 15 minutes of fame).

Disappointing... Daisy Duke goes from a very healthy character in the original TV show to looking like a hooker. Uncle Jesse looks like a drugged-out has-been (and is played by one).