6.1/10
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132 user 129 critic

The Car (1977)

A mysterious black, sleek automobile terrorizes everyone it comes into contact with in a small town in Utah. The local sheriff may be the only person who can stop this menace which has been possessed by pure evil.

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(screenplay), (screenplay) | 3 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Elizabeth Thompson ...
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Kate Murtagh ...
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Henry O'Brien ...
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Lee McLaughlin ...
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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:

What evil drives... The Car See more »


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

13 May 1977 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Wheels  »

Filming Locations:

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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

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Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The quotation said by Church of Satan leader Anton LaVey heard at the beginning of the film, "Oh great brothers of the night who rideth upon the hot winds of hell, who dwelleth in the Devil's lair; move and appear" was from the "Invocation of Destruction" in The Satanic Bible. 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

Chas: I shouldn't have left her.
Wade Parent: Nothing would have changed. He would have taken you out too. I talked to her... she called me when she got back here. She could hear the engine coming down the street.
[choking back the tears]
Wade Parent: She was so frightened. I don't know... I don't know.
Luke: I know why he didn't go into the cemetery.
[Wade turns to look at Luke]
Luke: I know why. There's no other reason... the ground... was hallowed.
[Wade gives Luke a skeptical glare]
Luke: That's what I say... but you think about it. ...
[...]
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Jeepers Creepers (2001) See more »

Soundtracks

Dies Irae, Dies Illa
(uncredited)
Traditional, thought to be written by Thomas of Celano
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
The Devil Passed His Driver's Test!
4 January 2000 | by (Venice Beach, CA.) – See all my reviews

What a flick. I just bought the widescreen edition and watched it to celebrate the new century. Let me briefly list a few of its many strong points, most of which are essential to the success of the 1970s "Killer Object/Animal" horror subgenre:

1. Colorful small-town (desert, Southwest-y) flavor. A parade or similar celebration (rodeo, picnic) should occur. 2. Quirky dialogue. 3. John Marley acting beligerent. 4. A Panicked Crowd Scene, with folks dashing for their lives as the demonic beast/machine/inanimate object heads their way. 5. A smart-alleck hippie who meets a horrible end.

Seriously, though-- this film isn't "scary" in the traditional sense, but its true power lies when you really start thinking about the car itself. Where did it come from? Is the Devil driving? And is it plaguing our major characters because of their sins? (i.e. Ronny Cox as an alcoholic falling off the wagon, James Brolin as a single parent trying to keep his daughters happy as he dates sexy Kathleen Lloyd.) What I'm saying is at its heart, this is a creepy, unsettling film with some really strange philosophical/religious questions at its core. And how many horror films can claim that? A solid 7/10.


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