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The Love Bug (1968)

G  |   |  Comedy, Family, Fantasy  |  13 March 1969 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.4/10 from 9,691 users  
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A race car driver becomes a champion with a Volkswagen Beetle with a mind of its own.



(screenplay), (screenplay), 1 more credit »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Tennessee Steinmetz / Tennessee
Joe E. Ross ...
Detective (as Joe E.Ross)
Barry Kelley ...
Police Sgt.
Iris Adrian ...
Andy Granatelli ...
Association President
Robert Foulk ...
Gil Lamb ...
Policeman at Park
Nicole Jaffe ...
Girl In Dune-buggy
Wally Boag ...
Flabbergasted Driver


Meet Jim Douglas, a down-on-his-luck race car driver who lives in an old run-down fire house in San Francisco with his friend Tennessee Steinmetz, a occasional drunk mechanic. One day, Jim went to a luxury car dealer and surprisingly seen a strange Volkswagon Beetle with a unusual problem, it tends to drive on it's own almost having its own mind. Then this car drove all the way to Jim's home. Believing that the owner of the car dealership Peter Thorndyke, planted the car on him. Then, Jim wanted to try out the car for himself, then, he experienced the nature of the car for himself. Then, Jim fixed it and now is in more control. Tennessee dubbed the car "Herbie". Then, Jim used Heribe for races. Jim then, was rising to fame and becoming more successful in racing, Then, Thorndyke wants Herbie back, but Jim refuses and Thorndyke wanted to compete against Jim in the races, then Thorndyke sabotaged Herbie before a race so, he can win. then, a big race known as the "El Dorado" was coming up... Written by John Wiggins

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Herbie Will Honk His Way Into Your Heart. See more »


G | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:



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Release Date:

13 March 1969 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Car-Boy-Girl  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)



Aspect Ratio:

1.75 : 1
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Did You Know?


Dean Jones who plays Jim Douglas in the movie and Herbie Goes to Monte Carlo (1977), also plays the role of the hippy in the drive-in short order snack shop. The actress, that acted as the waitress, is Iris Adrian. Iris Adrian and Dean Jones were in another Disney movie, three years earlier, in the feline comedy, That Darn Cat! (1965). Dean Jones' role was an FBI agent, Zeke Kelso and Iris Adrian's role was a firm, unnamed managing landlady of an apartment building, with door-to-door rooms (like a miniature hotel suite) in or near San Francisco, California. See more »


As Herbie wobbles drunkenly down the race track, the sun light is behind him. Then a few scenes later, the sun light is in front of him. See more »


[first lines]
Jim Douglas: I'd like another shot at that prize money. Okay for next Sunday?
Bice: No, Jim, it ain't okay.
Jim Douglas: Now, look, Bice, I know...
Bice: No, *you* look. All my drivers are eighteen, nineteen... You're too old for these kid snorts. You're liable to get hurt in there.
See more »

Crazy Credits

At the end of the end credits, the words "The End" turn into an animated bug which drives away from the screen. See more »


Referenced in I'm Alan Partridge: The Talented Mr. Alan (2002) See more »


Die Fledermaus
Written by Johann Strauß
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User Reviews

A Car that Will Win You Over
3 November 2003 | by (Red Bud) – See all my reviews

Since, I was three years old I have loved Herbie, the Volkswagen Beetle with a mind of his own. The Love Bug is a wonderful film for the family. Filled with adventure, comedy, and sweetness it is perfect for kids of all ages. When Jim Douglas, played by Dean Jones, starts to have a fluke in his racing career he almost gives up hope. He is stunned by a car dealership that is owned by Thorndyke, played by David Tomlinson, where he first runs into the famous Herbie. After standing up for the little car, Jim has found that the little car is his for keeps.

After winning numerous races, Jim believes it is his luck and not the little car. Tennessee, played by Buddy Hackett, knows that it is the little car and not Jim. Tennessee also influences Carole, played by Michele Lee, who took a little more convincing. Thorndyke tries many evil and cruel stunts to win Herbie back. After a mere loss, Jim has to prove himself to the little car and to the rest of his friends.

A big race is where Jim believes he will do it. The race is two days long and in those two days the little car will be tested to the limits. Herbie rides on water, rides with only two wheels, and even comes apart. Thorndyke is a true bad loser and is actually intimidated by the little car. This will determine who the better person in the end is.

The actors in this movie are truly acting and the content of the movie is

good as well. Robert Stevenson did a wonderful job directing this movie. Having the actors know how to act and having the little car doing all of the stunts played a really made a difference in this movie. As for the little car, I would like to know how they made him come to life so well that kept my interest for fifteen years. This is a wonderful movie and families every where will fall in love with Herbie and the rest of the cast.

6 of 7 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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