A wide variety of eccentric competitors participate in a wild and illegal cross-country road race. However, the eccentric entrants will do anything to win the road race, including low-down, dirty tricks.
Big and Little Enos are opening a sea food restaurant. They bet Sheriff Buford T. Justice that he cannot drive from Miami to the Enos ranch in Texas in a given amount of time. If Buford loses he has to give up his badge.
Bandit and Cledus are two truck-driving southerners who accept a dare from big-shots Big and Little Enos to pick up a truckload of beer from Texas and return it to them within a specified amount of time. Picking it up is simple enough, but as they are leaving Texas, Bandit unwittingly picks up Carrie, a hitchhiking bride-to-be who just left her groom, Junior, at the altar. Junior, however, is the son of Sheriff Buford T. Justice. And when Buford and Junior discover what has happened, they go on a "high-speed pursuit" across the Southeast to catch the bandit. Written by
Three Trans-Am cars were used in this movie. Director Hal Needham claims in the DVD documentary that they could barely run towards the end of the film's production. See more »
During the 'hiding in the convoy' scene, when Bandit (and later Snowman) pass "Mister B's" tanker truck (the last truck in the convoy, or "back door"), we see that the cab is painted blue. However, when we see a close-up of Mister B talking to Snowman on the CB as he passes the convoy, the cab around him is an orangish-red. See more »
I grew up in the south as a teen in the 70's and this movie was the South at that time. It was all about CB radios. I remember when my dad got one in his 1972 cherry red Chevy Impala. He had this big ol' whip antennae on the back and his CB handle(name) was Midnight(because he worked the night shift at Pan Am airlines). I think part of the reason Smokey was such a huge hit was threefold. First off, we were going thru an energy crisis and the age of muscle cars was over and most of us were driving around in small pieces of crap like the Chevette or the VW Rabbit! The thrill of seeing a muscle car like the Pontiac Trans Am tearing across the land was a huge thrill! Secondly, the country as a whole was in a malaise of the "Me Generation"..and all the self-help crap! People were listening to soft-rock like Helen Reddy and John Denver and taking self-help courses like est! People wore earth-tone colors and sandals. So when we saw these 'real-men" like Burt and Jerry Reed in thier plaid shirts and tight jeans, taking on the establishment by disregarding the rules of the road and all that, we got excited! Finally, the sheer delight in seeing people enjoying life was a thrill we all wanted to partake in! I can see why so many people, who were bored with life in the pre-disco late 70's, really enjoyed the escapism of this simple but extremely fun flick! We wanted to be a part of it! It was late-night chocolate we never admitted to eating. It was a movie you partly felt dumb to admitting you liked! But the movie itself inspired the hugely popular TV series Dukes of Hazzard, right down to the cast. Burt and Jerry became Bo and Luke Duke..Sally turned into a Daisy(with better legs!) and Sheriff Buford T. Justice became Boss Hogg with his bumbling sidekick Sheriff Roscoe B. Coltrane! And of course the Trans Am was replaced by a true muscle car, the 1969 Dodge Charger (was thier ever a better muscle car than the 69 Charger?) What followed in the aftermath of this movie was the explosion of disco and letting oneself enjoy life again! The whole world got back into living life and having fun! Maybe Smokey had something
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