6.1/10
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137 user 143 critic

The Car (1977)

A small desert town is terrorized by a powerful, seemingly possessed car, and the local sheriff may be the only one who can stop it.

Director:

Elliot Silverstein

Writers:

Dennis Shryack (screenplay), Michael Butler (screenplay) | 3 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
James Brolin ... Wade Parent
Kathleen Lloyd ... Lauren
John Marley ... Everett
R.G. Armstrong ... Amos
John Rubinstein ... John Morris
Elizabeth Thompson Elizabeth Thompson ... Margie
Roy Jenson ... Ray Mott
Kim Richards ... Lynn Marie
Kyle Richards ... Debbie
Kate Murtagh ... Miss McDonald
Robert Phillips ... Metcalf
Doris Dowling ... Bertha
Henry O'Brien Henry O'Brien ... Chas
Eddie Little Sky ... Denson
Lee McLaughlin Lee McLaughlin ... Marvin Fats
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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:

Is it a phantom, a demon, or the Devil himself? See more »


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

-The official trailer

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

13 May 1977 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Wheels See more »

Filming Locations:

Snow Canyon, Utah, USA See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Universal Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono | 4-Track Stereo

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Some of the film's foreign language titles had the following literal English translations: "Mechanical Hell" (France); "The Black Car" (Italy); "The Devil on Wheels" (Germany) and "The Car: Devil's Machine" (Portugal). See more »

Goofs

When Wade leaves his motorcycle to return to the garage, the headlight is on. When he gets on to escape The Car, the headlight is off. See more »

Quotes

Donna: Wade... there's something I... I wanna tell you about last night. Well, the old lady... well, Chas, he didn't translate everything that she said.
Wade Parent: What do you mean?
Donna: Well, uh... she said... there was no driver in the car.
See more »

Alternate Versions

The NBC TV version of this film was heavily edited for violent content. In particular, the scene where the Car goes into a barrel roll over the two oncoming police cars was totally removed, leaving the first time viewer with a major continuity problem. Other parts removed included the quick scene where the hitchhiker is shown being thrown through the air after being hit by the Car and later on, the Car blasting through the front window of the house is slightly altered. See more »

Connections

References Duel (1971) See more »

Soundtracks

Semper Fidelis
(uncredited)
Music by John Philip Sousa
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Thriller tale of a sadistic, killer car who hunts anyone.
31 October 2000 | by rick.spencer2See all my reviews

I've seen "The Car" several times over the years. I am a big fan of horror movies and while this is not exactly a "classic" by any means, I still enjoyed it. The plot is basically a car which drives around a desert town killing everyone/anyone it can. In these types of movies, you tend to enjoy watching and choosing who becomes the victims. I found the acting to be a little trying at times. In fact, at times, very bad. I mean, having two actors scream at each other (in one scene) does not create tension, it creates confusion. I like James Brolin in this film and John Marley as well, even though he didn't have much to do.

The star of the movie is "The Car". What I did not enjoy about the film was as a viewer I did not know anything about the car. Where did it come from? Why was it there? Was it the devil? A demon? I wanted to know more about this killing machine. I found that by the end of the film I was still a little confused. Also, I think this movie was a rip-off of the TV thriller released back in 1974, "Killdozer". The tale about a killer bulldozer terrorizing a construction crew. Possibly one of the worst ever made TV movies. The Car was much, much better. I remember seeing "The Car" at the movies. I think it stayed for about a week. Needless to say, the movie was a bomb. However, that does not mean it was a bad movie. There aren't very many horror movies that are a big success at the movie theatre. I think they tend to be more successful on video.

It's a shame that this movie wasn't more successful because I was looking forward to a sequel. Who knows, maybe they'll release "The Car 2" or "Son of Car". All that being said, take my advice, rent this movie. Pull up a chair, put the lights on low, snuggle beside your favorite person (wife, etc.), grab some munchies and, no matter what you do, make sure you keep that remote in your hand at all times.

Sit back and enjoy!


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