7.3/10
23,770
167 user 97 critic

Vanishing Point (1971)

During the 1970s, car delivery driver Kowalski delivers hot rods in record time but always runs into trouble with the highway cops.

Writers:

(screenplay) (as Guillermo Cain), (from a story outline by)
Reviews
Popularity
4,741 ( 34)

On Disc

at Amazon

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Vanishing Point (TV Movie 1997)
Action | Adventure | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  

When his wife goes into a troubled labor while he is on the road over 1200 miles away James Kowalski, a former race-car driver and Army Ranger, attempts to elude police while trying to get ... See full summary »

Director: Charles Robert Carner
Stars: Viggo Mortensen, Christine Elise, Steve Railsback
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A story of two men drag-racing across the U.S. in a primer grey '55 Chevy. Dennis Wilson is the mechanic, James Taylor is the driver.

Director: Monte Hellman
Stars: James Taylor, Warren Oates, Laurie Bird
Action | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Insurance investigator Maindrian Pace and his team lead double-lives as unstoppable car thieves. When a South American drug lord pays Pace to steal 48 cars for him, all but one, a 1973 Ford... See full summary »

Director: H.B. Halicki
Stars: H.B. Halicki, Marion Busia, Jerry Daugirda
The Driver (1978)
Action | Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A getaway driver becomes the latest assignment for a tenacious detective.

Director: Walter Hill
Stars: Ryan O'Neal, Bruce Dern, Isabelle Adjani
Action | Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Larry Rayder is an aspiring NASCAR driver, Deke Sommers is mechanic. As they feel they collectively are the best, the only thing that is holding them back is money to build the best vehicle... See full summary »

Director: John Hough
Stars: Peter Fonda, Susan George, Adam Roarke
Bullitt (1968)
Certificate: M/PG Action | Crime | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

An all guts, no glory San Francisco cop becomes determined to find the underworld kingpin that killed the witness in his protection.

Director: Peter Yates
Stars: Steve McQueen, Jacqueline Bisset, Robert Vaughn
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Kowalski
... Super Soul
... Prospector
... Vera Thornton
... Deputy Charlie Scott
... Deputy Collins (as Bob Donner)
... Angel
Gilda Texter ... Nude Rider
... First Male Hitchhiker
... Second Male Hitchhiker
... Sam - Clerk at Delivery Agency
... J. Hovah
Delaney & Bonnie & Friends ... J. Hovah's Singers
... Jake
Cherie Foster ... First Girl
Edit

Storyline

Kowalski works for a car delivery service. He takes delivery of a 1970 Dodge Challenger to take from Colorado to San Francisco, California. Shortly after pickup, he takes a bet to get the car there in less than 15 hours. After a few run-ins with motorcycle cops and highway patrol they start a chase to bring him into custody. Along the way, Kowalski is guided by Supersoul - a blind DJ with a police radio scanner. Throw in lots of chase scenes, gay hitchhikers, a naked woman riding a motorbike, lots of Mopar and you've got a great cult hit from the early 70's. Written by Matthew

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Watch carefully because everything happens fast. The chase. The desert. The shack. The girl. The roadblock. The end. See more »

Genres:

Action | Crime | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for sensuality/nudity and drug content | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

13 March 1971 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Carrera contra el destino  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$1,585,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$12,442,673, 31 December 1971
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show more on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Color:

(DeLuxe)|

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The Challenger had Colorado plates: OA-5599 See more »

Goofs

As the bulldozers pull up to their marks in the opening sequence, tread and blade scars on the pavement from previous takes are visible. See more »

Quotes

Charlie: What do you think he's done?
Collins: Don't know.
Charlie: Well, what do you think?
Collins: I think he's gonna hijack that car to Cuba, hahahaha.
Charlie: Don't be ridiculous!
Collins: Hell, Charley, I don' know! Maybe killed somebody! Maybe stole that big dude o' his! Maybe both.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The Fox logo is shown without the fanfare making it one of the first times this has happened. See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Cinema Snob: Zombi 3 (2016) See more »

Soundtracks

Sing Out for Jesus
Composed by Kim Carnes
Sung by Big Mama Thornton
(Courtesy of Pentagram Records)
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
Look back on your life torn asunder...then throw it into third gear and floor it.
2 April 2004 | by See all my reviews

Barry Newman is "Kowalski", an enigmatic figure who has tried everything in his life from stock car racing to the military, and failed at every one of his endeavors. Working as an auto delivery man, he gets an order to transport a 1970 Dodge Challenger R/T to San Francisco, and makes a bet with a few friends that it can be done in an impossibly short time. After loading up on "ups" and throttling the car westward, he is soon pursued vigorously by the police and embraced by the public as something of a hero. During a time when national speed limits were all controversy, this film provides a compelling argument against them: A fast car in the hands of a capable driver is not dangerous. Even the police, so caught up in their own system, don't realize that they are the only ones causing accidents and endangering the public while blindly trying to keep up with and capture Kowalski.

While the film sounds at first to be a simple action film, it's really much more than that. Kowalksi's past is revealed little by little through flashbacks, making the film something of a character study. Kowalski's trip becomes a road trip of existentialism as he runs across various strange characters: Solitary hippies, gay bandits, a boogie-woogie snake handling Christian cult, and the blind soul station DJ (brilliantly played by Cleavon Little) who is attempting to guide him on his journey from within the car's radio.

Topping it off is a great soundtrack, breathtaking cinematography and direction, and automotive action that has seen no equal. This film manages to be both compelling and exciting. Just watch it already.

10/10


144 of 164 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 167 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Trending Movies With Prime Video

Enjoy a night in with these popular movies available to stream now with Prime Video.

Start your free trial