Hollywood is obsessed with cars, and we’re not talking about rides that the stars drive. No, it’s the cars themselves that are the stars of the show. Here are our all-time favorite car movies:
American Graffiti (1973): Cruising, hanging out, wreaking havoc, and street racing one summer night in central California in 1962, four friends contemplate their lives. Future generations will watch this movie to know what it meant to grow up in an America obsessed with hot rods, and they’ll still want to drive Milner’s ’32 and Falfa’s ’55.
Vanishing Point (1971): The ultimate Mopar movie, Kowalski (Barry Newman) needs to get from Denver to San Francisco in less than 15 hours with only a white Dodge Challenger to help get him there. Excellent high-speed stunt driving prevents the cops from thwarting his plans.
Bullitt (1968): Steve McQueen’s seminal film, it features a chase scene that has hubcaps flying off the Dodge Charger and the hero’s Mustang bottoming out. Often referred to as the definitive car chase movie, it undoubtedly helped to sell more Mustangs in the heyday of the pony cars.
Smokey & The Bandit (1977): A bet says the Bandit (Burt Reynolds) can’t get a load of beer from Texas to Atlanta in 28 hours. Bandit has his friend Cledus (Jerry Reed) drive the truck while he runs cover in a ‘77 Pontiac TransAm, the real star of the show. He picks up Carrie (Sally Field) along the way, who’s running from her finance and his father, Sheriff Buford T. Justice (Jackie Gleason).
Gone In Sixty Seconds (2000): A retired master car thief, Memphis Raines (Nicolas Cage), must come back to the industry and steal 50 cars with his crew in one night to save his brother’s life. Sara ‘Sway’ Wayland (Angelina Jolie), one of Raines’ crew, is almost as captivating as Eleanor, the Shelby Mustang on steroids. This remake of the 1974 classic holds up quite well!
The Italian Job (2003): After being betrayed and left for dead in Italy, Charlie Croker (Mark Wahlberg) and his team plan an elaborate gold heist against their former ally.
Death Race (2008): Ex-con turned speedway champion Jensen Ames, (Jason Statham), is framed for murder and forced to compete in a reality TV car race that pits him in a life-or-death struggle against other cons. Ames’ race of his life has the whole world watching.
While there are dozens of others out there, these films are ‘must see’ movies for any car enthusiast.
If you’re interested in getting an exclusive look into the rides of some of your favorite celebrities, you can download ATC’s free eBook: