JUNESPLOITATION! "F-HEADS PICK MY PICKS" EDITION!CRASH! (1976, Amazon Prime, Chaybee: 6/27/2015)Charles Band helms this lives-up-to-the-poster possessed car flick that milks its has-been stars (José Ferrer, John Carradine, Sue Lyons during her post-"Lolita" descent into obscurity) for all their worth. But you want to get "Crash!" to see cop cars flip left and right, a Camaro convertible drive by itself, a Doberman hitman, possessed wheelchairs (!) and red-eye opticals that make Bill Bixby's white eyes during "Incredible Hulk" transformations look Oscar-worthy. Not as crazy about Andrew Belling's music as Chaybee was in his review (musicians! :-P), but Andrew "The Fugitive" Davis' cinematography is aces. Even 44 years ago Band was already a cheap bastard that repurposed ALL THE CRASHES for a final reel encore. 3 San Cecilia Road Signs (out of 5) THE HEARSE (1980, Plex, Patrick Bromley: 6/4/2017)Other than the unusual choice to focus its story on the mental plight of a middle-aged protagonist, "The Hearse" is a disappointing snooze. Trish Van Devere (who?) moves into the abandoned-for-decades house of her dead aunt. An old hearse does come into play... about an hour into a 100 min. movie in which the haunted house/spooky visions share screen time with the rural locals being mean to poor Jane. "The Hearse" never does anything cool and is relegated to a prop the (ghostly?) driver gets around with. Oh Crown International, you didn't live up to even my diminished expectations. 1.5 Paycheck-Collecting Joseph Cottens (out of 5)BATTLETRUCK (1982, YouTube, Anonymous: 6/5/2015)Not as prominent as The Landmaster in "Damnation Alley," "Battletruck" never lets you forget the titular vehicle the flick is named after. In a neat little twist to convention it's the army of bad guys led by Straker (James Wainwright) roaming the land 'After the Oil Wars' who drive and use Battletruck, with the good guys not wanting anything to do with it besides blowing it up. This is the best I've seen a movie use Michael Beck's good looks and non-emoting acting since "The Warriors" to portray the loner hero helping a band of survivors fight against Straker's thugs. The decision by its American low-budget filmmakers to shoot in New Zealand (aerial shots of Hunter's bike) gives the flick a neat edge. 3.5 Manure-Fueled 'Sploding Bikes (out of 5)PRAY FOR THE WILDCATS (1974, YouTube -best version-; also available on Kino Blu-ray)Three ad executives indulge the whims of a wealthy client by agreeing to accompany him on an off-road motorcycle trek through Baja California. Booze, ego and dick measuring behavior eventually drives wedges of loyalty and self-interest among the group. Typical mid-70's made-for-TV plot, but what a cast! Andy Griffith is in full-on "Face in the Crowd" a-hole mode after drunkenly flirting with a sexy hippie chick. William Shatner ("Star Trek"), Robert Reed (the same year "The Brady Bunch" was cancelled) and Marjoe Gortner ("Earthquake") shamelessly pretend to be riding off-road bikes clearly driven by younger, leaner stunt riders. Shame that Angie Dickinson (a few months before "Police Woman" hit the airwaves) is limited to concerned wife duty, but the month is young. 3 Losing-His-Shit Angry Matlocks (out of 5) ;-)
Battletruck is awesome!
Indeed it is. Loved that the filmmakers nakedly rip off the slow-motion ending of Spielberg's "Duel" for the finale, but "Battletruck" earns the right to steal from the best. :-)
Funny to revisit my old reviews. I was definitely more into writing in-depth about what I watched and now I realize it's a waste of time cause nobody cares. haha
HELL’S BELLES (1969) On Amazon Prime“All of this for a damn motorcycle.”A story of a motorcycle and the stubbornness of two men. One man won the motorcycle in a race. The other took it because he wanted it. Both view the motorcycle as their own and will go to extreme lengths to possess it. The female protagonist, who speaks the line quoted above, acts as a Greek chorus on the absurdity of the situation. Did I forget to mention that you are also watching an exploitation bike flick with fights and other mayhem? Hell’s Belles, moreover, is as much a western as biker film.Not being a big fan of the biker genre, I was pleasantly surprised. Hell’s Belles is an above-average entry for the genre. I believe it is the blending of western genre elements into the biker tropes that made the movie enjoyable to me. The location shooting around Arizona is very impressive for such a low-budget picture. Lugging all the motorcycles and equipment around the desert must not have been easy. There is also some decent stunt work. The cast does an admirable job keeping the energy of the film going up to the duel at the end. For a film I chose because I recognized the poster from the American Grindhouse documentary, I am not disappointed.
Which parts of Arizona does "Hell's Belles" happen? My folks live there, and I'm always up for some old-school flicks shot there. A recent TCM documentary about French director Alice Guy-Blaché had a few minutes taking place in Show Low, AZ, a remote part of the state where my dad and his wife have a summer home to escape the oppressive heat in Phoenix. Blew my mind. :-)
In the closing credits it is mentioned that there was filming in Coronado National Forest and in a studio in Tuscon. Some towns are listed on the IMDB page: Globe, Amado, and San Carlos.
Interesting. The bike movie I reviewed, "Pray for the Wildcats," was also filmed around Tucson, AZ studios (per credits at the end). Small world. ;-)
And we're off!Death Race (2008, dir. Paul W.S. Anderson)If a remake of Death Race 2000 was needed in the first place (it wasn't), I'm not sure the way to do it was to go smaller scale, less saritical and more self-serious. It's not a bad mindless action romp, I was just expecting something... more.Statham does what Statham always does as the lead and Ian McShane does what Ian McShane always does in the mentor role. And there was one funny spot, I laughed out loud when they revealed the drivers get power-ups by driving over different pads. Just like in Mario Kart.Børning (2014, dir. Hallvard Bræin)A Norwegian racing comedy, made in the wake of the F&F franchise's success. Roy, a mechanic by day and a drag racer by night, is challenged to a 1,300-mile cross-country race through Norway by his old nemesis at the same time he's tasked with looking after his estranged 14-year-old daughter. And for some reason, all of their quirky friends also take part in the race? That part wasn't really made clear.Anyway, you can guess the rest: mishaps happen along the way, father and daughter bond, bumbling cops try to catch the racers... A decent enough comedy, not necessarily prime Junesploitation fodder though.
I enjoyed the Death Race remake more than I thought I would. But I think it was because my expectations were very low. But you're right, it's a lot like Mario Kart.
I think I came off too negative. It's not a bad movie, it's just a bad remake.
Not too negative. You're right, it's a good movie, but a bad re-make. Because the orginal is a one of a kind 😀
Unless he's directing "Event Horizon" or his wife in a non-"Resident Evil" movie I can safely skip most Paul W.S. Anderson movies.
Manta, Manta (1991 - Wolfgang Büld)The Opel Manta, especially the Version B, is one of the cult cars of the 80s in Germany. Known as a small budget sports car, it became beloved by its proletarian owners and the butt of the joke of nearly everyone else. 1991, nearly three years after the last Manta rolled out of the factory, two action comedies came out in Germany to reflect on the love and hate the Manta received: Manta, der Film and Manta, Manta. Both movies set place in the so called Ruhrpott and are somewhat equivalents to the phenomenon of the "unknown sibling" movies, like Armageddon or Deep Impact. The Ruhrpott (Ruhr) is a region in Western Germany which faced a massive regression due to the lesser role of coal mining within the second half of the 20th century. It is comparable to Detroit in some ways, but stayed mostly populated until today. Manta, Manta tells the story of Bertie (Til Schweiger, in the US known due to his roles in Inglorious Basterds, King Arthur or Atmoic Blonde) and his crew of Manta lovers, who struggle with typically problems of young adults: love, jealousness, anger, lack of perspective and self confidence, ego, money and class divide. While all of them act somewhat dickish through the whole movie, the film somehow manages to keep you invested in them and hopefully, that they will succeed with their tasks. This also why I think that Manta, Manta is the better movie over Manta, der Film. The latter one seems not to like it characters, or at least doesn't show a lot to be invested in them, while the first at least shows that they have a heart, even if it's been a foolish one. It also looks way better and has a pretty good soundtrack. Needless to say, that both movies became cult themselves in the early 90s in Germany.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fG1EAwxZEtk
Happy Junesploitation everyone!I've had a busy movie watching day.Savage Dawn (1985 - Simon Nuchtern)This isn't exactly a car movie, and I watched it because I was jonsing for Junespoitation, and I'm calling it because William Forsythe and Karen Black ride on top of a tank for a big chunk of the movie. Look it's your usual 1980s motorcycle gang take over a town, that happens to look like the town the 3 From Hell Firerfly guys end up in. And Lance Henriksen will be there in the beginning and the end of the movie to deal with the situation. The movie is patchy, but it's fun, it has every single thing concieviable on wheels. Savage Dawn feels like more of different exploitation sequences thrown together. But it's what you want in the beginning of June.The Wraith (1986, Mike Marvin)It's a dopey movie but I enjoyed it. I mean if you come back to life you come back as Charlie Sheen. I didn't realise how good the cast was going to be, and they all bring their charm or individual quirke. But Clint Howard really stole every scene he is in with his Eraserhead hair, he always goes for gold no matter what he is in. In a movie that has a lot of over the top performances, he's going large.Mad Max: Fury Road (2015, George Miller)Sometimes you need a movie that makes you happy. And, yeah, Fury Road is a straight up masterpiece. It's an achievement in art in every respect. No wonder Miller couldn't explain to anyone what he was picturing in his head.Stunt Rock (1978, Brian Trenchard-Smith)Stunt Rock is a special movie. Part Stuntspolitation, part Rock Documentary with Socorery, who had an actual Sococerer. You know because he has a wizard hat. And in Australian fashion, the stunts are insane and work and safety is not in play. Again, it's one of those movies where every kind vehicle is in play. Grant Page is jumping from one car to another, crashing into cars, climbing down pipes to jump into another car, motocycles, a dune buggy, even the Hang Glider from The Man From Hong Kong shows up. It's a little bit of a cheat, beacause it's not exactly about cars, but there are some amazing car stunts.
Did you watch "Savage Dawn" online streaming or Vinegar Syndrome Blu-ray, Lindsay? Forsythe and Black are fun to watch, but I'm so pissed off at Lance Henriksen's character being such a reluctant hero. He delays doing something about the gang taking over the town for so long it costs the life of a likable character. Great premise, but needs a remake and rewrite that'd make the hero battling the bad guys more satisfying and cathartic. I've seen "The Wraith" a couple of times, but other than the cool concept car and Cousin Eddie as the sheriff nothing about it stays with me. I can't even remember Clint Howard! :-O
I love the vibe of THE WRAITH, especially when it comes to the soundtrack. Honestly, what keeps me from loving it is there's not near enough time spent with Charlie Sheen and Sherilyn Fenn and way too much with the goofy henchmen. It's like the movie is confused about who the leads are. But hey, it's a cool movie anyway and I love serious Randy Quaid in it.
The Wraith is a film I watched as a kid on HBO back in the late 1980s. It may not be the most child appropriate film, though. A few years ago, seeing it on Netflix, I watched it again out of curiosity. The car races I still remembered well, particularly the one with Lion's "Never Surrender" playing. That is still a cool song. Clint Howard and Dennis Quaid liven up the film, and Sherilyn Fenn caught my eye more than when I was 10 years old. I liked The Wraith for what it was.
DENNIS Quaid was in "The Wraith"? :-O That'll be news to his brother Randy. :-D
Randy, of course. The effects of being up all night are showing.
JM - I watched Savage Dawn on streaming. I think both Savage Dawn and Wraith have that in common, that the movies will often get sidetracked with the gang members. And for me they were kinda the most interesting part of each movie. Each person was from a different gang, got lost and then formed their own.
With some time to fill this morning, another watch seemed appropriate.PIT STOP (1969, dir. Jack Hill) On Amazon PrimeIf your looking for cars, Pit Stop is the jackpot. Sometimes there are more cars than I wanted to see, but that is the risk of watching any racing movie. I would not rate this among Hill’s best work; the plotting and the editing is a little rough around the edges. Nevertheless, it is still an entertaining flick from the drive-in era. The story centers around Rick Bowman, a young racer with a ruthless ambition to succeed in a ruthless business. The strength of the movie is the cast. The late Sid Haig is having a blast playing one of Bowman’s rivals. He is a shockingly bad loser. The financier supporting the racing is a callous businessman chillingly portrayed by veteran actor Brian Donlevy. The real surprise was Ellen Burstyn playing the wife of a driver who can handle herself in a garage as well as anybody. One the crazy sisters from Spider Baby also shows up.
More bad spelling... oh well.
Do no worry you are in good company, well at least with me anyway. I always make errors and at some point during this I will confuse Wes Craven and Wes Anderson :)
I watched Pit Stop for Cars day a couple years ago, and yeah, a good chunk of the movie is just cars doing figure 8 racing. Which is pretty enjoyable if you are, like me, the type of person that would enjoy going to a real figure 8 race every couple years. Coincidentally, we watched Cars 3 today which is the only other movie I know of that depicts figure 8 racing, haha.
The Need For Speed (2014)This might as well have been based on the Mario Kart video game series, at least it would have some sort of charisma. Apparently I watched the 1D version, judging by the characters and story. One of the few strengths would be the practical stunt work and minimal use of computer trickery. I suspect they didn’t even use a computer to type up a script. Rami Malek has been programmed to casual bro mode. Herbie Fully Loaded’s Michael Keaton right at the dawn of the Keatonaissance as an online personality/race organizer feels almost Beetlejuicy in his opening scene and then never again. The obvious comparison is the Fast and the Furious franchise but this lacks any of the charm and personality that floats those boats. Life is too short to have given 130 minutes of it up for this. I’m off to a bad Junesploitation start.
My CARS choice was 2003's The Italian Job. I was originally going to watch The Driver with Ryan O'Neal since I have been on a kick of his movies. I have never seen it, my wife Rachel swears by it, and I had seen the original a few months back on Criterion. The new one is certainly it's own baby. Marky Mark doesn't have the cool of Sir Michael Caine, Charlize is gorgoeus as usual, Norton isn't more than a twirling mustache, but his facial hair is gorgeous. This version went down easy and it was cool watching something they don't make anymore. Fun start to Junespoitation!
The Car: Road to Revenge (2019)I watched The Car a few Junesploitations ago and was pleasantly surprised, it’s a solid thriller with a game cast and some strikingly beautiful southwestern US scenery. This 42-years-later DTV sequel eschews all of that for a dark, dingy CG sheen and a cast that the makers of The Crow: Wicked Prayer would have considered too cartoony. At least they got Ronny Cox back for a cameo, though he’s playing a different character this time.The plot in brief: in an unspecified future a thoroughly unlikable dude is murdered by a gang of stock future hooligans and thrown out of a high window where he lands on his car (this time around the screenwriters give it a make and model, the Lazarus One, because that’s what’s supposed to pass for clever in this kind of horseshit). The car then goes after the hooligans and murders them one by one. That’s pretty much it. The original Car (or at least a reasonable facsimile, the production designers forgot to leave off the door handles, which was one of the touches that made the original so effective) makes an appearance late in the game, but it only serves to remind you that there’s an infinitely better movie you could be watching. Also, a note for those who may have missed this on the Twitter machine (™️ JB): I’ve made a decision to donate $5 to Black Lives Matter for every Junesploitation movie I watch this year. Since they need it now, I made a payment for the month in advance. Several FTM people are joining me, and I hope others can too! Donations can be made here, if you’re so inclined (there are also plenty of other reputable related fundraising sites out there): https://secure.actblue.com/donate/ms_blm_homepage_2019
Cannonball! (1976)Hello, all! It's great to be back! And what a wonderful way to start the month! They don't make em like they used to. A cross country race that spans from LA to New York. I would call it a light-dark comedy, Paul Bartel's specialty. For awhile, you think your watching a silly racing movie then all of a sudden people get killed left and right. I enjoyed the hell out of this movie. It's been a crazy week and it was nice to start off with such a fun ride.
Hard to believe the director of "Cannonball!" and "Death Race 2000" would go on to star/write/direct "Eating Raoul."
DRIVE (2019) It’s Fast and the Furious meets National Treasure as street racers plot a heist at the president’s mansion in India. It has all the double-crosses, surprise twists, and cool swagger you’d expect from a caper like this. A lot of the car stunts are CGI cars, though, making them do crazy stuff a real car couldn’t possibly do. Seems to me that this goes against the idea of a cool car movie. 30 days of HELLO MARY LOU: PROM NIGHT II, day 1The thing about this movie is like it feels like a whole bunch of movies in one. Upon this morning’s viewing, the question is, how to describe it to newbies? What is the “elevator pitch?” I’m thinking it’s one-half Carrie and one-half Nightmare on Elm Street. That doesn’t cover it all, because there are so many characters, so many plot beats, so many insane set pieces, and so much ‘80s music video gloss, but I suppose this description is as good a place as any to start.
So you're watching Hello Mary Lou every day? Really? I mean I love that movie but I can't imagine watching any movie that many times in a short period.
That's the plan!
Quoting "C.H.U.D.," 'he's a madman!' :-P
Cars 3 (2017) for Famsploitation Movie Morning"Was expecting to write 7 word review" or"It's better than you remembered it being"
Oh yeah, 3 is definitely a step up from the ming-boggling boringness of 2. At least it's about something.
Christine (1983, dir. John Carpenter)Every Junesploitation needs a little Carpenter. Love the look of the scene where Christine puts herself back together after being trashed. It's really well made. Why is everyone drooling over Alexandra Paul when Kelly Preston is right there?
Joyride to Nowhere (1977, Mel Welles, Ronald C. Ross)A good little movie I'd never heard of. Although cars don't really factor into the plot, other than to get to places, there's a couple of montages of street racers just hanging around, a few car chases and of love of cars ramping over cars.The two leads (Leslie Ackerman and Sandy Alan) are delightful as two no-nonsense teenagers on the run. One is running away from an abusive father and the other ponders the options regarding her pregnancy. Both plot points come and go and they encounter hijinks.Bonus points for Len Lesser (Uncle Leo) looking exactly as he did on Seinfeld some 15-20 years later.
The Road Warrior (1982, dir. George Miller)Not much to say. It's The Road Warrior.
I haven't watched it since Fury Road and I'm scared it won't hold up as well in a post-Fury Road world... did it hold up for you this time?
I actually like it even more than Fury Road still, but both are the best.
I'm actually saving it for 80s action day. I'm super stoked about it, too, as somehow I managed to never have seen it before.
Stroker Ace (1983)Two for two today! I think it is unhealthy not to love Burt Reynolds. He has that thing, you know, a mustache. But he is more than a mustache. I get why Loni Anderson would fall for him. Yeah, yeah, Loni is gorgeous. Gun to my head? I'd take a night with Burt. His name is Burt. No one else could be named Burt and get away with it. Maybe Lancaster but it's just not the same.
Please tell me you're watching a Burt every day :).
That would be awesome
The Blues Brothers (1980, dir. John Landis)Is there a better three movie stretch for a director than Animal House, Blues Brothers, and American Werewolf in London? All three of those may be in my personal top 100. The Blues Brothers is arguably the greatest action comedy musical of all time. The real-life wanton gratuitous destruction in the car chase scenes in a major city center will likely never be done again to this scale. Amazing. Also this movie does what really good car chase movies do: It shows real cars going real fast without any tricks. I think everyone loves this movie but if you've somehow never seen it I highly recommend it.
Car Wash (1976)The writer of this directed my favorite movie, Batman Forever...jk it's The Lost Boys(can you imagine?) I gotta say that it's a 3-for-3 day so far with more to come. It's funny and has some heart. Richard Pryor makes a cute cameo with The Pointer Sisters. The film had extra weight because of what is happening. I thought they portrayed the people of color and the cross-dressing character pretty well, especially for 1976. Starting the month with Cars! was a great move to kick things off. I hope this good luck continues!
I watched that for Junesploitation last year and the theme song is still stuck in my head. Really fun movie!
Joyride (2001)Brothers on a road trip have some fun with a CB radio & prank the wrong guy....Buffalo Bill. I'm sure Rusty Nail bought Candy Cane the best pink campaign. Fun flick, that really gets going when Rusty Nail lets the boys know they should get their taillight fixed
Death Race 2000 (1975)At one point, Sylvester Stallone calls Louisa Moritz “a big baked potato.”
I love that Paul Bartl has absolutely no interest in subtlety.
Convoy (1978)About as 1978 as you can get, I think. CB radios, Ernest Borgnine as an asshole cop and Kris Krisstofersen in a Mack truck. Not quite as fun as I would have liked but there's some good sleazy nonsense with a patina of the working man gets a raw deal.And then...there's a police brutality on a black trucker that just felt way too real for this week.
Recently, I've been working my way through Sam Peckinpah's filmography, but this one might be at the bottom of the list.
White Line Fever (1975)A Jan-Michael Vincent movie about long-haul trucking was a solid start to Cars! day and my Junesploitation viewing. There's not actually too much car action in this one aside from a couple good scenes. Lets face it, unless you're really going to go all out on the budget there's only so much you can do with big-rig truck chases and they pretty much get that out of the way early when they have JMV climb on top of the trailer and shoot at a pursuing car. The first of what I imagine will be many Dick Miller appearances over the coming month, and Martin Kove as the main henchman of the bad guys.
Maximum Overdrive (1986)perfect? no... Fun? Hell yeah!
Death Race 2000 (1975) I feel like I'm probably the only person here who hadn't seen it before, but I'm happy to announce that is no longer the case. Great movie. Too bad Matilda the Hun and Herman the German didn't last longer in the race, I was totally rooting for them. Blitzkrieg! Also, holy crap, it's Sensei Kreese as Nero the Hero!
The Car (1977) showed up on Netflix...TODAY. Coincidence? I don't know how I convinced myself I hadn't watched this yet, but it's still pretty great.
Ghost of Dragstrip Hollow (1959, dir. William J. Hole Jr.)Decided to kick off Junesploitation with this breezy 65 minute AIP dragsploitation trifle about pompadoured, hot rod-obsessed teens and the straight-laced authority figures who struggle to understand them. The mostly plotless film eventually coalesces into an “Old Dark House” picture when the teens decide to rid a spooky house of a g-g-g-ghost, and the film basically becomes an episode of Scooby Doo (if the Scooby Gang was obsessed with chunky Buddy Holly glasses and dense automobile jargon). This charmingly doofy film has it all: rear-projection car races in empty canals! A talking parrot named Alphonso! A character who says, “He’s got static in his attic! Completely zonked!” with a straight face! A sentient mystery-solving car who dutifully intones, “I DIG YOU, MASTER” to his teenage grease-monkey creator! By the time the film concluded with block text reading THE ENDEST, MAN I was completely won over. Happy Junesploitation!
It is a film that should not work but somehow does. Maybe it is the endearing goofiness. AIP tried the same "throw-it-all-together" concept for its beach party cycle with The Ghost in the Invisible Bikini. The result is far less entertaining than Dragstrip Hollow.
Yeah, from what I understand of it, this definitely felt like a precursor to the beach party movie cycle. I'm pretty unfamiliar with that sub-genre, but some of the titles are so goofy and endearing (I'm looking at you, How to Stuff a Wild Bikini), I'll probably have to give one a try sometime.
First Junesploitation for me, thanks to a good friend Daniel Epler.My viewing was Jacques Tati's Trafic (1971). Delightful bumper to bumper action with Mr. Hulot antics!
Love that choice!
Thanks you two, I dropped the ball on keeping up with this! haha
The Driver (1977)I've been meaning to watch this for a long time since Edgar Wright named it the primary influence for Baby Driver. Its a pretty straightforward story, but its very engaging. The car stunts are pretty impressive as well. Ryan O'Neal is badass as the fearless driver, but for me it was Bruce Dern's crazy determined cop that stole the show. I got off to a pretty good start with this one. It wouldn't shock me if it ends up being my favorite of the month.
THE ITALIAN JOB (1969):"Hang on a minute, lads. I've got a great idea!" WHEELS OF FIRE (1985): While watching this MAD MAX clone, I thought, "What would my post-apocalyptic warlord nickname be?" Thanks to the internet, I found an answer: I am "Rakka, The Defenestrator, Driver of the Caltrop 7!"Find yours here: https://markcortejos.github.io/mark-cortejos-project-3/
Ghost of Dragstrip Hollow (1959)A sort of anything goes AIP teenager movie that adds and drops characters and storylines with the coherence of a movie with ads on Vudu. It's a fun watch.
My first ever Junesploitation.....very excited about taking part....went with 'The Driver' tonight, seen it before but it's been a couple of years, gotta say I've always liked Ryan O'Neal and he's bang on in this one....good start
Pit Stop (1969) - a surprisingly solid racing film directed by Jack Hill and featuring Sid Haig in a supporting role. It's set in the world of figure 8 racing, where the track has an intersection, which apparently is really a thing. This is a very entertaining movie, one I'd never even heard of prior to searching for car related movies on Amazon Prime. One day into June and I've already discovered a gem. Not too shabby.
Repo Man (1984)- Never seen this, and it was fuckin awesome. Harry Dean Stanton is the man. Emilio Esteves looks like an infant. The LA here looks- a few hairstyles and phone booths aside- exactly like this now. I'd guess it's very accurate ( I dunno, I was 2 when it came out...) The cars are mostly not too great, it's more like a punk movie. But way overdue for me to watch, just fun times. The end falls apart a bit, but I'd be disappointed if it made logical sense. "Let's get sushi and not pay."
Vanishing Point (1971)First-time watch and maybe poor timing on my part. I dug it though.
Mad Max (1979) Dir. George MillerPronounced Maed Mecks in Australia.
Lowriders (2016)Like if the first The Fast and the Furious had a baby with Crazy/Beautiful. I love it.
Wayyy too Many Choices, going with "Vanishing Point" because its been awhile, and time permits "Race w/The Devil" one of the great titles...
Driver (2018)Uber Driver: The Horror Movie.I could have done without the word "whore" being said every five seconds. This has less foreshadowing and more fore-stating. (fore-cliche-ing?)Hard pass.
The Driver (1978) Dir. Walter HillI have been circling this one for awhile, and it fully met my lofty expectations
I went with this one too, was a big hole in my filmography. It totally lived up to what I expected. I expected something more like Vanishing Point for some reason and it felt really modern. A+++!
Absolutely a gem! I can totally see the influence on modern car movies that everyone talks about
The Junkman (1982)I could sit here and pretend to know what the hell happened in this movie but I would be lying. I think I had fun? But seriously there was no shortage of (car)nage...holds for applause. I wouldn't say it was good but not terrible. A little disappointing considering the other 3 I watched today. Maybe if it was a better quality I would have appreciated it more. I did enjoy that it was another LA movie. That's all I got.
The Cars That Are Paris (1974)First time watch. A great movie for Cars! day. This was awesome. Feels like it would pair well with DEAD AND BURIED. I'm so excited for this month.
Good call with the Dead and Buried paring! I also got strong The Wicker Man and Wake in Fright vibes.
Drive (2011) It starts out as something cool and different, sort of a distant cousin to Miami Vice, then finishes up as a very traditional action hero film. There is a negative correlation between the words that Gosling says in a scene and how interesting the scene is.
Running On Empty (1982)Obviously not the 1988 River Phoenix movie of the same name. This is an Australian film from one-time director John Clark (aside from writer/director credits on a kids show called Kideo 10 years later, he has no other credits on IMDB). Not a bad little drag racing movie although the lead has terrible luck and becomes a lot less sympathetic near the end. Max Cullen as the blind, former racer Rebel is the highlight here. Watched it on Youtube.
In addition to The Driver (above) I also watched Trading Paint (2019) - Karzan KaderBased on F! This Movie recommendation. Wasn't good in any way, but you get Travolta fishing with Shania Twain early on, so I was sold.
Also, I'm aware it doesn't fit the criteria, but whatever.
haha I kinda like this one. Travolta is really good in it and I'm a total mark for race car movies. But I totally understand.
I liked it because you can tell it's Travolta's real facial hair. and he's the only one with a worse hobo beard than me.
You sold me with "fishing with Shania Twain" and then you sold me again with "Travolta's real facial hair." *adds to Watchlist twice*
Happy Junesploitation!Talladega Nights:The Ballad of Ricky Bobby (1978, dir. Adam McKay)Honestly, way better than I expected and absolutely hilarious. Has Gary Cole ever NOT been the best part of a movie he's in? My only complaint is some of the jokes get dragged out way too long, but my blu ray is the Unrated Cut and I wonder if that has something to do with it. Always bummed when they don't include the theatrical. But overall, this was fun! "If you don't chew Big Reds then fuck you."The Driver (1978, dir. Walter Hill)I've been meaning to see this ever since Baby Driver came out and Edgar Wright was talking about it. Absolutely fantastic movie with mindblowing car chases and stunts. It's fascinating how this has the exact same main character as Drive (2011). Plus, Bruce Dern as a sleazy cop? One please! Big fan of this one.
I Know What You Did Last Summer (1997)Kevin Williamson’s not as good follow up to Scream. A group of beautiful “teenagers” hit and kill someone after a night of partying. Too scared to admit their wrongdoings, they throw the body in the ocean to cover it up. One year later, someone knows and wants revenge. But know is it?! (It’s the guy no one mentions until the last 10 minute).I feel nostalgic for this movie more than anything. It’s ok, but the direction feels bored so it can be hard to stay engaged. The 1:40 runtime doesn’t help. But it’s filled with people I recognize so that helps.
Savage Dawn (1985, dir. Simon Nuchtern)I can't say it better than Lindsay said it above. It's more motorcycles than cars, but I'm doing the best I can. There's also George Kennedy in a wheelchair shooting missiles at a tank being driven by William Forsythe and Karen Black, so you get your money's worth.
Well, when you sell it like that, who can resist? :-)
White Lightning (1973)Holy. Shit. Burt Reynolds gets out of prison so he can find out how his brother was killed. Sorry to ruin anything but he finds out he was killed because he was protesting with his friends. He knew the cops were dirty and was killed for it. Ain't that some shit. Nothing changes.
Ford v Ferrari (2019)Christian Bale saying "bloody hell" over and over was the only thing to put a smile on my face today.
Christine (1983) Dir. John CarpenterRobert Prosky is quite literally chewing scenery
Until scenery chews him right back... the end. :-D
The Fast And The Furious (2001)I enjoy this movie more every time I watch it. At the same time, I have a great disdain for the type of person that spends $1000's to make their Civic louder and flashier, just so they can drive dangerously like an asshole through city traffic. But I really like the movie! That's what we call Movie Magic.
Wheelman (2017)It's good. Fortunately you don't need to take my word for it because Mr. Pomaro already poured his heart into this piece
The Cars That Ate Paris (1974, dir. Peter Weir)What a menacing, unsettling movie. Between this, Dead End Drive-In, and the Mad Max films, I’m fascinated by Australia’s seemingly complex relationship with automobiles. In The Cars That Ate Paris, they seem to be representations of a kind of primal masculinity: the punitive burning of a character’s car plays out like a symbolic castration, and our protagonist is depicted as a “lesser” man because he’s no longer capable of driving. Lots of beautiful, haunting shots throughout: the red paint of a scorched car bubbling like blistered skin, a group of townspeople descending on a wreck like a cloud of flies to strip it down to the frame. Highly recommended.
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Ronin“I never walk into a place I don’t know how to walk out of.”
The Ambulance1990, dir. Larry CohenFirstly, I’m kinda stoked I can participate in Junesploitation again this year (thanks COVID). Secondly, I’m committing to watch nothing but new-to-me titles throughout the month unless my wife or cohost Derek asks otherwise. I chose ‘The Ambulance’ mostly because I’m trying to fill in my Larry Cohen blind spots. Conceptually, this film is right on the money with the general medical paranoia and the contradictory sense of isolation that can come from being in a city of millions of people. The car chases and stunts are pretty rad and Cohen’s standard use of raw street level footage is endearing. Eric Roberts is truly wild, proving that much like Nic Cage, he always gives his all, even when in subpar movies. He’s a huge sleaze that never really matures by the end, but he’s still entertaining to watch throughout (that mullet is wild as fuck). That said, the award for “Best Performance on Another Goddam Planet in a Larry Cohen Joint”, hands down, goes to James Earl Jones. His constant weird business with the chewing gum, his paranoia, and smart ass retorts is truly insane. Overall, the movie sags a bit in the middle and the plot is mostly just one huge logic leap to the next, but like usual with Cohen’s movies, there’s enough intriguing subtext to keep you entertained for a tight 96min.
The Cannonball Run (1981)So happy to be here celebrating Junesploitation! Bit of a disappointing start for me, not a great sign when I'm enjoying the blooper reel playing over the credits more than the movie. What a cast though! Most enjoyable part was getting to see Jackie Chan in a fight.
Crash! (1976)Always nice to kick off Junesploitation with what turns out to be a great pick. JM said it all in the first post, so I'll just add that I had a really good time with this one, and if anyone's curious, I just found out that the French dubbed version is on Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gf19qvtOAMM&t=250s(I despise modern dubbing but find older dubbing quite charming, especially from the 60s and 70s)
Went with a 1986 Double-Feature for Cars day-The Wraith (1986)The villain is pretty lame (though one of his lackeys is the always great Clint Howard, sporting a simply amazing hairdo), but this is really well shot, and the car racing scenes are solid. Plus there’s an incredible practical explosion, it’s got a great soundtrack, Randy Quaid is fun as the sheriff and Sherilyn Fenn sparkles in an early role. Not nearly enough Sheen though.Black Moon Rising (1986)There’s the veins of several franchises here (Mission Impossible and Fast & Furious are the easy comparisons), which isn’t too shocking considering it’s from a script by John Carpenter. And while the movie doesn’t work completely, there’s a lot to like here. Tommy Lee Jones is fantastic and makes a good team with Linda Hamilton, the supporting case is terrific (though I wish villain Robert Vaughn had gotten a little more to do) and the finale is just aces.
Death Race 2000 (1975)Was going to watch this or Drive Angry (The Nicholas Cage Exploitation movie)but went with Death Race for one reason. I wanted to watch the ending. If you seen the movie you'll know what Frankenstein does to some religious figures, politicians and some media members As twisted as it sounds it was pretty cathartic and a bit of the punk rock protest I needed right now.
Freeway (1988)My "theme" for the month is to finally watch a bunch of the boutique-label blu-rays that have been collecting dust in my collection as well as taking advantage of streaming services I've been paying for and not using, and after failing to find Two-Lane Blacktop on The Criterion Channel or anywhere else, I figured Kino Lorber's Freeway would be close enough. I was wrong - it actually fit the bill perfectly with lots of car-related mayhem, a very 80s-exploitation vibe and even an appearance by Clint Howard! This one is a lot of fun and not just in a dumb way - it would also count as a Revenge movie if you want to watch it today! 3.5 squealing tires out of 5!
Death Proof (2007)Usuaully, every Junesploitation I try and consume as much unseen filth and sleaze as possible. However, with a pandemic rampant, protesters in the streets, and a soul-sucking 9-5 office job weighing on me like a concrete sheet, I've decided to kick things off with a neo-exploitation favorite of mine that I never grow tired of seeing. Every girl, especially the second group, are crushing their razor sharp and to-be-expected QT turns of phrase and an utter joy to watch. This is a true love letter to genre films and I discover something new with every viewing. The second half car chase is one of the best road stunts ever put on film. I don't feel it gets the appreciation that other QT flicks do because of the gimmick I suppose, but this is my favorite in his filmography. I was in such a downtrodden mood before I popped in the DVD and was driven full speed away from my daily stressors thanks to a soundtrack not to be rivaled, a great Kurt Russell peprformance, and a lot of feet from a creepy bartender named Warren.
Pit Stop (1969)Sid Haig delivers an MVP performance. Some amazing car footage for a low budget flick too.