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
The nickname Smokey is Citizens Band radio slang for State Patrol troopers because of their hats. Most states outfit them with what are properly called "campaign hats" with a "Montana crease". The hat with that type crease is of late 19th century vintage. It came to be called a "Smokey Bear hat" after the US Forest Service began publishing images (posters) of their mascot wearing one in 1944. Nicknames for other law enforcement officers are, among others, "City Kitty" or "local yokel" for a city police officer and "County Mountie" for a county police officer or Sheriff's deputy. See more »
After winning the initial bet, Bandit, Carrie and Cledus (Albeit reluctantly.) agree to a double or nothing bet in which they have eighteen hours to drive to Boston, Massachusetts and pick up some clam chowder. The distance from Atlanta to Boston is 1075.6 miles and would take nearly seventeen hours to drive. Unless they travel by plane, Bandit, Carrie and Cledus have no chance of winning the bet and stand to lose $160,000. See more »
Georgia State Trooper:
[during the final chase, the motorcycle cop has landed in a ditch with water]
Son, don't you know this ain't Saturday?
See more »
One of the first films to tap into the anti-authoritarian aspects of the Citizen's Band (CB) radio craze, "Smokey" is basically a movie-length car chase and a pleasantly insipid slice of late-'70's Americana.
The tissue-thin plot has good ole boy pals The Bandit (Reynolds) and Cletus (a surprisingly good Jerry Reed) running a load of Coors cross-country on a tight deadline while trying to avoid an assortment of less-than-bright cops, led by pompous blowhard Buford T. Justice (Jackie Gleason). Sally Field, as a runaway bride who thumbs her way into Reynolds' car, brings charm and a welcome sense of irony to the macho proceedings.
Stunt coordinator-turned-director Hal Needham stages the action competently, and the actors, who supposedly improvised much of the dialogue, obviously enjoy themselves. A good choice for those who want to relive the glory days of CB rebels, long sideburns, plaid western shirts, and black Trans-Ams with "screaming chicken" decals on the hood. Avoid the two vastly inferior sequels.
39 of 46 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?