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Smokey and the Bandit
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Smokey and the Bandit More at IMDbPro »

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Truckers will love it!

Author: wvarednec from Gainesville, VA
30 January 2001

If you like car chases and lots of laughs this is the movie for you!I have seen this movie at least a hundred times and I love it just as much every time I watch it.I drive a tractor trailer for a living and this movie is a must for fellow truckers!

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Brains? We don't need no stinkin' brains . . .

Author: inspectors71 from Fly-Over Country
4 October 2016

to watch Hal Needham's festival of redneck stupidery, Smokey and the Bandit. SATB was he second highest grossing movie in 1977, only topped by Star Wars, and it's easy to see why the movie is so popular--it's simply too fun for words. Anyone who doesn't chuckle at this idiot- fest of hillbilly stunt-drivin' needs to mix a stool softener with a nice cold Coors.

Way back when, you couldn't buy Coors in big chunks of the United States. Why, I don't know, nor do I care. I had an administrator tell me about his financing his higher education at the University of Montana by driving down to Wyoming on Friday nights, loading up the old wagon, then booking it back to Missoula to sell the cases of Coors in the dorm parking lot. It went fast, but I can't see the Bandit driving a mid-fifties station wagon.

The administrator told me that the movie touched him deeply, and then he laughed at his own good luck (never got stuck in bad weather and never got busted!).

Smokey and the Bandit, itself, is a really stupid movie, with forced humor, cartoonish characters, utterly unbelievable stunts, and Sally Field looking very, very good. If you can forgive the dumbosity of this vehicular game of beer-pong, I guarantee you'll suspend disbelief-- and your common sense--and you'll wonder how much an old Trans Am goes for these days.

A Coors Light sounds really good right now.

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Too Straight Forward with a Lack of Adventure

Author: Dillon Harris from Ireland
1 October 2016

Smokey and the Bandit is a mediocre movie with a lackluster plot and a decent cast. The main thing that makes it worthwhile is Burt Reynolds, he shines as the Bandit, really embodying the role and delivering all his dialogue with pure confidence and charisma.

There is no sense of excitement or adventure to the story. We are never told how much time they actually have to do this beer run and as a result of that we are not kept at the edge of our seat since it feels like they have limitless time.

As well as that, there is no moment where the Sheriff has the upper hand over Reynolds. The protagonist never appears to be in any type of danger, as a result of him always being one step ahead, we never really support him.

As far as comedies go, it is all too typical, you can tell the punchline to every joke from a mile away, I understand it may have been somewhat groundbreaking for 1977, today however, it is all too familiar. Modestly funny but lacking in any engagement, Smokey and the Bandit may entertain some, but I would not recommend it.

In pursuit from a Sheriff, The Bandit is hired on a beer run across the county.

Best Performance: Burt Reynolds / Worst Performance: Jackie Gleason

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a fun fast paced romp

Author: disdressed12 from Canada
14 August 2016

I quite enjoyed this was entertaining and funny. The acting was good. Sally Field and Jackie Gleason were stand outs in my opinion, although Burt Reynolds and Jerry Reed were also good. The plot was kinda silly but in a good way. The film is not trying to be something more than it knows it's silly. Would I watch again? I sure would. in fact I have watched it several times, and I found I enjoyed it as much each long as you don't take I too seriously going in and you know what you're for, you might enjoy the film. There's not much more that I can say,other than take a chance. You might be surprised. for me, Smokey and the Bandit is an 8/10

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A Populist Classic

Author: bkrauser-81-311064 from United States
3 August 2016

A pair of southern, good 'ol boy truck drivers are dared into bootlegging beer while being chased by countless police cars on the Fourth of July. Their aided by a runaway bride nicknamed Frog (Field) and cast of colorful characters running interference and keeping tabs on them via CB radio. The only way the plot of Smokey and the Bandit could be more unabashedly American is if someone stuck a firework up their a** while singing the national anthem. Did I mention that our protagonist, the infamous Bandit is played by none other than masculinity incarnate Burt Reynolds?

Bandit's main job is being the truck's blocker; i.e. the guy who scouts ahead and distract Smokeys (police) to clear a path for his reluctant partner Snowman (Reed). As such the Bandit drives a 1977 T-Top Pontiac Firebird Trans Am special edition with a painted valve covered V8 engine and a top speed of 135 miles and hour. To complete the ensemble, the Trans Am has gold rims, is painted black and features a golden firebird ascending from the top of one mean looking hood. Smokeys from Texarkana to Georgia try in vain to catch the legendary Bandit but alas the man is too slick, even for the likes of Buford T. Justice (Gleason) a Texas sheriff whose son's bride to be has been picked up by the bristles of Burt Reynold's mustache.

The events of Smokey and the Bandit play out like a live-action Road Runner (1966-1973) cartoon with Reynold's tongue firmly placed in cheek. The antics of the smooth-talking Reynolds, the rodeo clownishness of Snowman and the game-for-anything Sally Fields makes for something uniquely satisfying. Like listening to the tit-for-tat dialogue of Oscar Wilde slumming it on an episode of Dukes of Hazzard (1979-1985). It goes a long way, especially when you consider you're essentially watching a B-movie with a wafer-thin plot.

Perhaps "thin" isn't the word to use; rather it's small and maladroit compared to cheeseball truck-centric originators like Plunder Road (1957) and Red Ball Express (1952). There's not a lot of unnecessary subplots or backstory; heck even the time-clock aspect of the film is frightfully underplayed, choosing instead to focus on mythologizing the star, the car and the CB radio. Yet largely thanks to Jackie Gleason's scenery-chewing pomposity we never get the feeling that this film is anything more than a cheap and fun carnival ride. One whose trajectory is a barrel of laughs and whose ending is surprisingly layered given the time it was released.

But who cares; stuntman turned director Hal Needham certainly doesn't and neither do the throngs of fans who have made this film a populist classic. I say let the good times roll!

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The Fast and the Hilarious

Author: Fluke_Skywalker from United States
18 July 2016

Plot; Two drivers agree to bootleg a load of beer 1,800 miles in 28 hours only to find their mission complicated by a runaway bride and a fiercely determined sheriff who happens to be her would-be father in law.

Released during the late 70s CB radio craze here in the States, 'Smokey and the Bandit' would be easy to write off as a disposable byproduct of that short-lived fad, but that would be unfair. It ain't exactly high art to be sure, but it is a skillfully directed bit of automotive ballet enhanced greatly by charming and energetic performances from its leads. Burt Reynolds was the biggest box office star in America at the time, and it's easy to see why. He's got an innate likability and an effortless charm that never seems forced. On top of being impossibly cute, Sally Field is Reynolds' equal in every measure, and the two share a wonderful chemistry. Joined by singer Jerry Reed (who delivers what may be the best performance of the lot), they form as likable a trio of heroes as you're ever going to meet. But a hero is only as good as his villain, and the Bandit has a doozy in the form of Sheriff Buford T. Justice. Thanks largely to a tour de force performance from the legendary Jackie Gleason, Justice steals every scene he's in and makes for a great comic foil for our heroes.

Fun, fast-paced and good-natured, 'Smokey and the Bandit' is the proto Fast and Furious that easily hangs with and often exceeds its sleek 21st century progeny.

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Simply a classic

Author: shockey514 from United States
15 May 2016

One of the best comedies of all time. Gleason came out of his shell of never working blue, which is what made this movie. Beyond the cool factor of the car, in my opinion possibly the coolest car ever, and Burt Reynolds as the Bandit Buford T. Justice is amazing. The fact that anyone could not like this movie is simply insane to me. There is so many lines many people to this day I hear say, and everyone laughs. Burt Reynolds is forever the Bandit, and Gleason to me will always be Smokey lol. But seriously the movies is light hearted and funny. It's not t be taken seriously, and that's why it's a classic, and to me an all time top 10 comedy movie.

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Author: (maxastree) from New Zealand
21 April 2016

Smokey and the Bandit was one of the top selling items of 1977 - behind Star Wars, as apologists and hype-bandits have proclaimed. Its also the inception of a crass, commercially oriented feature film style with no plot, no substance, its oddly neutered of any real bite, and its overly slick editing appears to be pulled from the world of advertising.

Core plot features a sex-god redneck smooth talker driving a product-placement Pontiac TransAm like a madman all over the road, drawing police attention from a bootlegging truck convoy. Its all part of an old money wager to get illegal goods across state lines before a set deadline, however the filmmakers don't even bother concluding its premise - instead setting the action up for a sequel.

Whats really wrong with Bandit, besides the relentless sexism, is its sheer lack of depth or meaning; stunt coordinator Hal Needham should have been directing a car commercial or straight-to-VHS low budget b-movie, but his friendship with bankable star Burt Reynolds put money in the project, making the car chases more insane, and the camera work more impressive.

All that, however, doesn't change the fact that Needham can't direct. A key sequence involving a truck stop where Reynold's wing man gets in a bar fight illustrates his shortcomings: the scene involves a charming animal, a race relations moment, comedic misunderstandings, a barroom fight sequence, some culture war implications and a bit of nostalgic country music to boot. While a decent director could wring some weight and emotion out of the sequence, as well as some good laughs, Needhams version reads something like this: Slick set up shots. INT: Fight sequence - CUT TO - EXT - Stunt Sequence. That's about it.

Basically, Hal Needham's a pre-CGI Michael Bay.

I'd have given the movie a one-star rating but moved it up to three because of a) some insane car stunt moves that would have certainly impressed viewers in '77 and because b) it has nostalgic childhood value for some folks out there. (HINT: leave it in the past, Smokey and the Bandit is not really a movie, its a car commercial.)

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Shut Off Your Brain and Buckle Up!

Author: Sean Lamberger from Bradenton, FL
13 April 2016

A classic of the auto-smashup genre, with about as much depth and thought as an episode of The Dukes of Hazzard. And that's totally okay by me, as that's basically the name of the game with this type of film: enjoy the mayhem and try not to overthink anything. Burt Reynolds is at his laid-back best as a legendary bootlegger, coolly skirting the law and forging new trails in his mighty Trans Am, kicking up his feet to casually go with the flow around every obstacle. He makes the whole thing work, really, and the cavalier air of confidence he exudes soon rubs off on the rest of the cast. Jackie Gleason is loads of fun as his nemesis, a particularly persistent Texas sheriff, but he can also fly way off the handle, chewing up scenery like a tacky cartoon character. The driving is great, inventive to the end, and the carnage is satisfying without being mean-spirited. A good flick to throw on whenever you've got a spare hour to fill, though it's better if it doesn't get your undivided attention.

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It's time to race over to see Smokey & the Bandit! For me, it was just alright watch. Nothing too special, but it was fun watch.

Author: ironhorse_iv from United States
15 March 2016

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

As a modern viewer, it's really confusing, to see an alcohol bootlegging movie, come out in the 1970s, that wasn't based in "prohibition era" America. However, that's not really a fault of the film. It makes the film, a little more unique. Made during the Convey Craze of the late 1970s. Smokey & the Bandit reeks of that era cheese. That doesn't make it, a bad movie. It just a little dated. A lot of the Citizens band radio (CB radio) lingo and slangs, really goes, over my head. It's also kinda disturbing to see the main character risk innocent driver's lives on the road, for alcohol and to see random people helping him, escape from the police. Despite that, for the most part, the film was very entertaining, even if everything in the film is so over-the-top. Directed by Hal Needham, the movie tells the story of a bootlegger runner, named Bo 'Bandit' Darville (Burt Reynolds), whom is hired to run a tractor trailer full of beer over county lines. However, he has one big problem, he's always being pursuit by foul-mounted, determinate, Texan Sheriff, Buford T. Justice (Jackie Gleason), hoping today is the day, that he will captured him and his son's runaway bride, Carrie (Sally Fields). Without spoiling the movie, too much, I have to say, this film is a bit disappointing when it comes to how it over-praise Coors Beer. It felt more like a product placement commercial, than a well-rounded movie. Trust me, Coors Beers wasn't as popular, as what this movie made it seem to be. While, its truth, that many Americans in the East Coast wasn't able to get Coors, due to the item not able to be legally sold, east of the Mississippi. However, in truth, Coors wasn't that popular, to Eastern Americans, at the time, due to how they treat their workers, during the labor strike of 1976/1977 & also the fact, that beer was only sold regional, so many people never try it over other products. Added to the fact, that Coors wouldn't go nationwide distribution in the United States until the mid-1980. It's only the seventh most popular beer at the U.S. Not number one, like this movie, makes it out to be. One thing, that was popular at the time, was car chase movies. After all, the 1970s would be describe, as the last great era of the America muscle cars. Add to the fact, that the 1st oil crisis, ended years ago, in 1973, and the fact that the next one isn't until 1979. You would see, a few of these cars, speed, back in the day. While, the stunts in this film doesn't seem, too dangerous or impressive to today's viewers. Compare to the CGI ridden car chase movies of today, this movie has a lot more realistic in its stunt work. In my opinion, it was alright for the most part. Nevertheless, the best thing about this movie, has to be the comedy and the characters. Burt Reynolds really does stand out in this film as the Bandit. I can't see, anybody else, playing, this rugged, wisecracking, Southern-type "good olé' boy, besides him. This movie really help his career, as it lead to many car comedies for him, such as 1981's Cannonball Run. I also love Jackie Gleason in this film. He's by far, the second best in this film. I love that he was given free rein to ad-lib dialogue and make suggestions. Most of the best laughs came from him. Two characters that I felt was a bit disappointing, was Sally Fields as Frog AKA Carrie and Jerry Reed as Cletus Snow. I wouldn't say, their roles was really memorable. However, Sally Fields does have chemistry with Burt Reynolds to the point that they dated after this film was made. Despite that, most of their scenes, felt a bit, too time-wasting. I really can't believe that they were able to catch up with Snowman's truck, at all, or be around each other, to the point, that they can still hear, each other in CB radio. You would think, they wouldn't be, able to make it, due to how long, the lake scene was. While, Jerry Reed's acting was mediocre, at best. Jerry Reed's performance of theme music, "East Bound and Down", was catchy. Even, if the lyrics of the song, seem low brow, and bit simpleton. I also love the fact, that this movie help influence the 1979–85 TV series 'The Dukes of Hazzard', sharing many identical settings and concepts. In the end, this movie was good enough to include two sequels, 1980's Smokey and the Bandit II, and 1983's Smokey and the Bandit Part 3. None of them, as good as the original. Then, there was also a series of 1994 television films (Bandit Goes Country, Bandit Bandit, Beauty and the Bandit, and Bandit's Silver Angel) from original director/writer Hal Needham loosely based on the earlier version, with actor Brian Bloom now playing Bandit; that was somewhat interesting, but not worth watching. Overall: This movie was a Guilty Pleasure of director Alfred Hitchcock. So is it for me is. It's not the greatest movie, but it's entertaining enough to be watchable. So, put the pedal to the metal and go see this movie.

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