Just like videogames, the movies offer a perfect setting to romanticise race culture and petrol-head fantasy. There are few big name movies that focus solely on rally driving but there are countless which have cars as a centre plot tool. For some fun, we’ve compiled our top five car movies from across the last few decades. We are aware that many of you will disagree, maybe even weep into open hands at missing classics but hey, why not just discuss any omissions on Facebook and Twitter?
- The Fast and the Furious (2001)
Depending on what you look for in racing movies, this series either got better with each instalment or peaked with this well rounded NOS fuelled debut. A fresh faced Paul Walker and Vin Diesel star in a daft undercover cop story about a group of underground drift racers-come-thieves who form a rather endearing family of fractured friendships.
- Vanishing Point (1971)
Not only did this movie inspire one of Primal Scream’s best albums but it’s also a Spielberg all time favourite. Panned at release, this scenic exploration of the American Southwest perfectly encapsulates the mood of the era and has since gained cult classic status. Barry Newman’s Kowalski is a delivery driver who tasks himself to drive from Denver, Colarado to San Francisco (1,000 miles) in a 70’ Dodge Challenger R/T 400 Magnum in a day… what follows, well… watch it.
- Rush (2013)
This Ron Howard directed drama biopic focuses on Niki Lauda and James Hunts infamous F1 rivalry back in 1970. Chris Hemsworth and Daniel Brúhl steal the show in what is a genuinely surprising work of high octane drama. Superb cinematography, inspired direction and an evident passion for the subject matter behind the performances, there’s little doubt it’s a modern classic.
- Bullitt (1968)
Oh Steve Mc Queen, we need another like you. Summing up the plot to this visual wonder is pointless… the real beauty comes from the cinematography, the direction and goodness, that San Francisco car chase – timeless.
- Senna (2010)
The tragic passing of F1 driver Ayrton Senna shocked racing fans worldwide back in 1994. In Asif Kapadia’s documentary we are given a touching insight into the racing legend’s turbulent personality and fearless commitment to the sport. This is a fascinating tale in its own right that also upturns surprising facts about the man himself.
What’s your favourite racing movie? Let us know… or tell us how wrong we are!