IMDb > Death Race 2000 (1975)
Death Race 2000
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Death Race 2000 (1975) More at IMDbPro »

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Death Race 2000 -- Open-ended Trailer from New World
Death Race 2000 -- US Home Video Extra (Clip) from New World
Death Race 2000 -- US Home Video Extra (Clip) from New World
Death Race 2000 -- US Home Video Extra (Clip) from New World
Death Race 2000 -- US Home Video Extra (Clip) from New World

Overview

User Rating:
6.2/10   18,254 votes »
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Director:
Writers:
Robert Thom (screenplay) and
Charles B. Griffith (screenplay) ...
(more)
Contact:
View company contact information for Death Race 2000 on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
27 April 1975 (USA) See more »
Genre:
Tagline:
In The Year 2000 Hit And Run Driving Is No Longer A Felony. It's The National Sport! See more »
Plot:
In a dystopian future, a cross country automobile race requires contestants to run down innocent pedestrians to gain points that are tallied based on each kill's brutality. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
User Reviews:
A superb demonstration of why we need to keep independent cinema alive See more (140 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

David Carradine ... Frankenstein

Simone Griffeth ... Annie Smith

Sylvester Stallone ... Machine Gun Joe Viterbo

Mary Woronov ... Calamity Jane
Roberta Collins ... Matilda the Hun

Martin Kove ... Nero the Hero

Louisa Moritz ... Myra

Don Steele ... Junior Bruce (as The Real Don Steele)

Joyce Jameson ... Grace Pander
Carle Bensen ... Harold
Sandy McCallum ... Mr. President
Paul L. Ehrmann ... Special Agent (as Paul Laurence)
Harriet Medin ... Thomasina Paine
Vince Trankina ... Lt. Fury
Bill Morey ... Deacon

Fred Grandy ... Herman the German
William Shephard ... Pete

Leslie McRay ... Cleopatra
Wendy Bartel ... Laurie
Jack Favorite ... Henry
Sandy Ignon ... FBI Agent

John Landis ... Mechanic
Darla McDonnell ... Rhonda Bainbridge
Roger Rook ... Radio Operator
rest of cast listed alphabetically:

Paul Bartel ... Frankenstein's Doctor (uncredited)
David Boyle ... Little Boy at picnic (uncredited)
Peter Cornberg ... Resistance Army Member (uncredited)
Charles B. Griffith ... Resistance Army Member (uncredited)

Lewis Teague ... Toreador (uncredited)

Directed by
Paul Bartel 
 
Writing credits
Robert Thom (screenplay) and
Charles B. Griffith (screenplay) (as Charles Griffith)

Ib Melchior (story The Racer)

Produced by
Roger Corman .... producer
Jim Weatherill .... associate producer
 
Original Music by
Paul Chihara 
 
Cinematography by
Tak Fujimoto (photographed by)
 
Film Editing by
Tina Hirsch 
 
Art Direction by
Beala Neel  (as B.B. Neel)
Robin Royce  (as Robinson Royce)
 
Makeup Department
Patricia Hutchence .... makeup artist (as Pat Hutchence)
 
Production Management
Peter Cornberg .... production manager
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Charles B. Griffith .... second unit director (as Charles Griffith)
Dennis E. Jones .... assistant director (as Dennis Jones)
Lewis Teague .... second unit director
 
Art Department
Keith Michl .... propmaster
 
Sound Department
Lee Alexander .... sound mixer
Ben Burtt .... sound designer (uncredited)
Richard Bryce Goodman .... boom operator (uncredited)
 
Special Effects by
Richard MacLean .... special effects
 
Stunts
Ronald C. Ross .... stunt coordinator (as Ronald Ross)
Paula Dell .... stunts (uncredited)
Bobby Ferro .... stunts (uncredited)
Bob Herron .... stunts (uncredited)
Alan Hubbard .... stunts (uncredited)
Kim Kahana Jr. .... stunts (uncredited)
Conrad E. Palmisano .... stunts (uncredited)
Greg Walker .... stunts (uncredited)
Harry Wowchuk .... stunts (uncredited)
 
Camera and Electrical Department
Michael Barrere .... key grip (as Michael Bryar)
Eric Saarinen .... camera operator: second unit
Henning Schellerup .... camera operator: second unit
Brian Swain .... gaffer
Paul Hunt .... additional cinematographer (uncredited)
Kit Kalionzes .... assistant camera: second unit (uncredited)
Douglas Olivares .... assistant camera (uncredited)
Leslie Otis .... first assistant camera (uncredited)
 
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Jane Ruhm .... costumer (as Jane Rum)
 
Editorial Department
Michal Goldman .... associate editor
Lewis Teague .... associate editor
 
Other crew
Dean Jeffries .... car constructor (as Dean Jefferies)
James Powers .... car designer
Arrahwanna Thomsen .... script supervisor (as Arrah Robinson)
Gil Valle .... location manager
Joanie Blum .... script supervisor (uncredited)
Jane Ruhm .... title designer (uncredited)
 
Crew believed to be complete


Production CompaniesDistributorsSpecial EffectsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
Runtime:
80 min | Argentina:84 min
Country:
Color:
Color (Metrocolor)
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Certification:
Argentina:X (original rating) | Argentina:18 (re-rating) | Australia:R | Australia:M (TV rating) | Canada:R (Manitoba) | Canada:A (Nova Scotia) (original rating) | Canada:AA (Ontario) | Canada:13+ (Quebec) | Canada:14 (Nova Scotia) (re-rating) (2002) | Finland:K-18 | France:-16 | Germany:16 (2002) | Iceland:12 | Italy:VM18 | Netherlands:18 (original rating) | Netherlands:16 (re-rating) | Norway:18 (DVD release) (2003) (uncut version) | Norway:16 (video) (1988) (heavily cut) | Norway:(Banned) (1976-2003) (cinema release) | South Korea:18 | Sweden:15 | UK:18 | UK:X (original rating) | USA:R | West Germany:18 (original rating)

Did You Know?

Trivia:
The racetrack used for the opening track and grandstand scenes is the Ontario Motor Speedway near Los Angeles.See more »
Goofs:
Errors in geography: The shot of the racers in Manhattan en route to the Lincoln Tunnel was clearly filmed in downtown Los Angeles.See more »
Quotes:
[Opening; The United Provinces version of "The Star-Spangled Banner" is played at the fictional New York Memorial Raceway]
[first lines]
Deacon:O, great American multitude and sports fans everywhere, today we inaugurate the 20th Annual Trans-Continental Road Race. Today, the five bravest young men and women in this greatest of nations will risk their lives in the greatest sporting event since the day the Sparticus! Three days hence, a new American champion will be crowned for all the world to behold, in awe, in respect, in fear!
[...]
See more »
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FAQ

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14 out of 16 people found the following review useful.
A superb demonstration of why we need to keep independent cinema alive, 27 January 2006
Author: mentalcritic from Southern Hemisphere

The B-film industry was once a thriving staple of Hollywood, with directors of all walks and ideals being able to make a film as long as they could raise the cash. Roger Corman, a producer and director among many other things, is one embodiment of the independent spirit. Producing over three hundred films in his career, his name is virtually synonymous with B-level schlock, and it is his productions that have given many of today's major stars their start. In fact, you will find three very familiar faces gracing Death Race 2000. Death Race 2000 is one of his more extravagant productions, but do not let that fool you. Even in 1975, the three hundred thousand dollars he spent on Death Race 2000 would have equaled lunch money on The Godfather Part II, released the previous year on a comparatively lavish budget of thirteen million dollars. While I like both films equally, Death Race 2000 impresses me more simply because it manages to entertain me from start to finish without spending enough money to fund an emergency ward for a month.

Death Race 2000's plot is simple enough. Five drivers in customised cars drive across a repressive American dictatorship, starting on the East Coast before making their way to New Los Angeles. Along the way, they may run over any pedestrians for certain scores. Rather than simply being the first to cross the finish line, the winner is he who can accumulate more points than the others. It is this critical difference compared to other racing films from which much of the comedy is derived. Those who have seen the film before will remember Euthanasia Day with a lot of fondness, and the utter incompetence of the resistance movement is hilarious in itself. But the real comedy derives from the individual drivers and their personalities. By far the most normal driver in the competition is Calamity Jane, a woman with a cowgirl fetish and metallic bullhorns on the front of her car. Coming next is Nero The Hero, who will look very familiar to viewers of The Karate Kid. His whole shtick revolves around being a Roman Gladiator, but the film does not really give him enough time to develop it.

Things get really interesting with racer number three, Matilda The Hun. Sporting Nazi symbolism and screaming "Blitzkrieg" whenever she scores a pedestrian, she is the least subtle indication that the makers had their tongues firmly in their cheeks during the creation of the film. Next are the two big rivals in the competition. Sylvester Stallone plays "Machine Gun" Joe Viterbo like a cranky adolescent who has snorted too much cocaine. There is literally nothing on the road he will not kill, and Stallone's trademark slurred speech suits the character to a T. But the real star of the story is Frankenstein, the other previous race winner and a friend of the President. David Carradine plays Frankenstein like a C-grade Darth Vader, delivering much of the comedy. His diversion on Euthanasia Day and the moment where he kicks Stallone's butt are worth watching the film for by themselves. Learning about why he wants to win the race, and what he will do in order to accomplish it, are hilarious in and of themselves. You can sort of see why Carradine and Stallone went on to become headlining stars whilst Kove enjoyed a brief career as the lead villain.

Death Race 2000 is as dated as hell, let's not kid ourselves. The matte painting of the starting race track is more obvious than an undone bluescreen effect. The blood is so fake that it looks pink at times. The editing makes it very confusing to see how one is getting run over, or who is punching whom during the aforementioned Carradine/Stallone altercation. On the other hand, its story of a dictatorship America that uses sport as an opiate for the masses, its portrayal of the media, and its depiction of blind obedience are timeless. They are even more relevant thirty years on than when the film first premiered. I like to think of the incompetent resistance movement as an indictment of the fact that we would have a better government if we had a credible or even opposing opposition. Seventy-nine minutes is too short a time to go into these political subplots at all, but that Death Race 2000 touches on them at all when far more serious and lengthy films made years later cannot even consider them is a credit to Corman and his company. Death Race 2000 is one of those films that should be preserved in a time capsule for the edification of future generations.

I gave Death Race 2000 a seven out of ten. Were I making it today, there are a few things I would do differently. The television segments would have been filmed using video or line removal rather than a camera at a television screen, for instance. Balancing this out, however, is the fact that so many of the shots are so effectively composed that it is no wonder Tak Fujimoto went on to become a multi-award-winning Hollywood cinematographer. In short, if you have not seen Death Race 2000 yet, then grab the new Roger Corman Classics DVD. It will be the best B-film, in fact one of the best films period, you will see all year.

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