6.2/10
8,265
141 user 149 critic

The Car (1977)

A small desert town is terrorized by a powerful, seemingly possessed car, and the local sheriff may be the only one who can stop it.

Director:

Elliot Silverstein

Writers:

Dennis Shryack (screenplay), Michael Butler (screenplay) | 3 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
James Brolin ... Wade Parent
Kathleen Lloyd ... Lauren
John Marley ... Everett
R.G. Armstrong ... Amos
John Rubinstein ... John Morris
Elizabeth Thompson Elizabeth Thompson ... Margie
Roy Jenson ... Ray Mott
Kim Richards ... Lynn Marie
Kyle Richards ... Debbie
Kate Murtagh ... Miss McDonald
Robert Phillips ... Metcalf
Doris Dowling ... Bertha
Henry O'Brien Henry O'Brien ... Chas
Eddie Little Sky ... Denson
Lee McLaughlin Lee McLaughlin ... Marvin Fats
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Storyline

Near the small desert town of Santa Ynez, a mysterious black car runs down two teenage bicyclers en route to camp, then it hit-and-runs a hitchhiker with local Amos Clements as witness. Sheriff Everett puts his men on alert and plants road blocks in the area to arrest the murderer, but soon he himself falls victim to the car. Sheriff Wade Parent leads the hunt for the vehicle that threatens their town and seems impossible to locate. When his beloved girlfriend, teacher Lauren Humphries, challenges the driver in a cemetery, the car hunts her in her home. Wade realizes he might be dealing with supernatural powers. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil / revised by statmanjeff

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

There's nowhere to run, nowhere to hide, no way to stop... The Car See more »


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

-The official trailer

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

13 May 1977 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Wheels See more »

Filming Locations:

Snow Canyon, Utah, USA See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Universal Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono | 4-Track Stereo

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Twelve men worked on building four versions of "the car" for the movie for ten months. Construction took eight weeks. Many safety devices and mechanisms had to be installed for occupational safety reasons so as to protect the stuntmen who would be riding inside them. See more »

Goofs

When the girl cycler is killed, The Car had been squeezing her over to a low concrete wall next to the side of the road, but when she actually goes over the side, there is no wall. See more »

Quotes

Amos Clements: So you're the one that woke me up this morning with that awful bugle music.
John Morris: That's impossible sir, that's not even a bugle, it's a French horn.
See more »

Alternate Versions

The NBC edited for TV version of this film includes some additional scenes to pad out the movie due to needed commercial breaks. The aforementioned additional scenes were during the cemetery standoff between the school band and the Car. The part where Lauren is insulting and taunting the Car is longer and there is a short dialog between her and her friend Margie planning on how one of them will run out and escape to call for help. These are not on the official 1999 DVD/VHS release. See more »


Soundtracks

Dies Irae, Dies Illa
(uncredited)
Traditional, thought to be written by Thomas of Celano
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

They Saved Hitler's Car!
14 July 2000 | by Jeope!See all my reviews

Lemme say this about "The Car" - the horror movie genre received a monumental boost in credibility with the release of this proud and noble pic. Gathering together some key horror movie elements (small desert town, scrappy desert folk, demonic Lincoln), the makers of "The Car" must've felt they were on top of a goldmine. They had an A-list cast led by the future Mr. Barbra Streisand and the awesome Ronny Cox. After a decade of love, peace and grooviness, America was once again ready for killer car movies. So what went so terribly wrong? Two words: Star Wars.

It's true. If it weren't for George Lucas, "The Car" would've been the surefire hit of 1977 and we'd all be reminiscing about the classic "Car Wars" trilogy and remembering how incredible James Brolin was as Indiana Jones.

Sadly, "The Car" disappeared into the night, never to receive the credit it deserved as a true horror breakthrough as a classic portrayal of man versus machine. Pitting a mysterious chopped-down souped-up Lincoln with a cruise-ship horn against a motley crew of never-say-die townsfolk, "The Car" follows the bloodthirsty path of a supercharged, soulless sedan as it brutally chews up scenery, cyclists, and one memorable french-horn-toting hitchhiker. It is indeed a chilling movie that eerily foretold future trends such as road rage and godawful James Brolin films, with an ending for the ages.

Bearing in mind, a great deal of this is sarcasm. But truthfully, "The Car" is highly recommended for the good-bad-movie lover - it is an excellent film to make fun of.


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