A disaster movie opening with an enormous multi-vehicle crash on a Californian highway. After the opening stunt-filled action, a flashback of the crash victims' lives prior to and leading ... See full summary »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Sergeant Sam Marcum
Barbara Hutton
Al Pearson
Lee Bassett
Joe Kapp ...
Officer Estevez
June Pearson
Officer Hutton


A disaster movie opening with an enormous multi-vehicle crash on a Californian highway. After the opening stunt-filled action, a flashback of the crash victims' lives prior to and leading up to the accident. The closing replays the entire "smash up" from various angles and in slow motion, depicting much carnage and indifference to the victims. Written by Brooke <soylent@ican.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


15 Lives Bound Forever in One Shattering Second ... The Most Awesome Automobile Accident Ever Filmed!







Release Date:

3 December 1976 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Carambolages  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Interstate 5 runs north-south on the west coast of the United States paralleling US Route 101 from the Mexican to the Canadian borders connecting the cites of San Diego, Los Angeles, Sacramento (California), Medford, Eugene, Salem, Portland (Oregon), Tacoma, Seattle, Everett and Bellingham (Washington). See more »


For the entire film, Sgt. Marcam's CHP cruiser is a then-new 1976 Dodge Monaco (an intermediate sized car). For the crash sequence at the end of the film, his car changes into a much larger 1973 Dodge Monaco (no doubt a budget consideration, as the car is wrecked). See more »

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User Reviews

Interesting little time capsule.
30 May 2002 | by (Longmont, Colorado) – See all my reviews

Incredible that but for one review, and even that only two months ago, no-one has seen fit to comment all through the years on this above average telemovie. Inarguably dated now, as evidenced by the vehicles themselves, the flares, hair-do's and music, SMASH UP ON INTERSTATE 5 is a reasonably faithful reconstruction (disaster-movie style) of the events leading up to the true-life pile up not so many years earlier.

Better than average script give the cast of well known actors and actresses something to work with. Robert Conrad, still looking the part of Jim West plays the police patrol officer most closely involved in the fifty car collision. Tommy Lee Jones, also a cop, looks like a youthful long haired refugee from WOODSTOCK and Buddy Ebsen is well, Buddy Ebsen, as always!

The film does not attempt to sensationalise the events, merely presenting them as is, albeit with considerable literary license one suspects. The actual collision is quite well done for its day, showed in stop-frame at the beginning and in full gory detail at the conclusion. I have this film in our library and decided to compile this review having watched it this evening, the first time in ten years or so. An absolute time-capsule!

Titled COLLISION COURSE in Australia, and several European countries.

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