Funny Car Summer is a nice example of 1970s cinema verite, very much of its time, and capturing the spirit of the decade in a strangely poignant way. Watching a film like this in some ways shows how works of this style have gone on to influence modern cinematography's efforts to represent the 1970s and its values.
Significantly it's worth focusing on what it isn't - it's not an adrenaline fuelled rush down a quarter-mile of tarmac with a clear plot - and I'd argue it's the better for it - put it next to more recent attempts to address motor racing (Days of Thunder, Driven, Michel Vaillant...) and Funny Car Summer's merits start to become clearer. Equally, it's not the Speed Merchants, either in terms of production values, pace, or the way it hangs together, but does form a useful counterpoint to Keyser's film of two years earlier. There's a tired almost tawdry feel to Funny Car Summer which shows that motor racing, in most forms, has nothing to do with the glitzy spectacle of 21st century Formula 1. If nothing else a work like this serves an admirable function in stripping away the illusions and preconceptions of what can often seem a very artificial world.
6 of 7 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?
| Report this