6.0/10
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452 user 281 critic

Speed Racer (2008)

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4:11 | Trailer
A young driver, Speed Racer, aspires to be champion of the racing world with the help of his family and his high-tech Mach 5 automobile.

Directors:

Lana Wachowski (as The Wachowski Brothers), Lilly Wachowski (as The Wachowski Brothers)

Writers:

Lilly Wachowski (as The Wachowski Brothers), Lana Wachowski (as The Wachowski Brothers) | 1 more credit »
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Popularity
2,442 ( 679)
1 win & 12 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Emile Hirsch ... Speed
Nicholas Elia ... Young Speed Racer
Susan Sarandon ... Mom
Melissa Holroyd Melissa Holroyd ... Speed's Teacher
Ariel Winter ... Young Trixie
Scott Porter ... Rex Racer
Giancarlo Ganziano Giancarlo Ganziano ... Everyman Announcer (as Gian Ganziano)
Peter Fernandez ... Local Announcer
Harvey Friedman ... Harold Ledermann Announcer
Sadao Ueda ... Japanese Announcer
Valery Tscheplanowa ... Russian Announcer
Sami Loris Sami Loris ... Italian Announcer
Olivier Marlo Olivier Marlo ... French Announcer
Sean McDonagh Sean McDonagh ... Celtic Announcer
Kick Gurry ... Sparky
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Storyline

The story begins with Speed Racer who is a young man with natural racing instincts whose goal is to win The Crucible, a cross-country car racing rally that took the life of his older brother, Rex Racer. Speed is loyal to the family business, run by his parents Pops and Mom. Pops designed Speed's car, the Mach 5. The owner of Royalton Industries makes Speed a lucrative offer, Speed rejects the offer, angering the owner. Speed also uncovers a secret that top corporate interests, including Royalton, are fixing races and cheating to gain profit. With the offer to Speed denied, Royalton wants to ensure that Speed will not win races. Speed finds support from his parents and his girlfriend Trixie and enters The Crucible in a partnership with his one-time rival, Racer X, seeking to rescue his family's business and the racing sport itself. Written by Anthony Pereyra {hypersonic91@yahoo.com}

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

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Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for sequences of action, some violence and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In a number of scenes, the "bokeh" (circular/oval out-of-focus points of light) are seen in different shapes:
  • in Royalton's club they are diamonds
  • in a number of the race scenes they are squares or rectangles.
  • and when young Speed sees young Trixie for the first time and when they kiss at the end of the film they are hearts.
See more »

Goofs

During the first race, Speed is driving the Mach 6. Although many believe this car wasn't built until just before the final WRL Grand Prix at the end of the movie, the Mach 6 was Speed's main car until it was destroyed at Fuji. The Mach 6 was rebuilt for the Grand Prix since the Mach 5 still had the defensive features from Casa Cristo which weren't allowed. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Race Announcer: All drivers to your cars, please. All drivers to your cars.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The directors' credits spin out of a wheel, similar to how the title of Speed Racer (1967) appears. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Saturday Night Live: Jonah Hill/Mariah Carey (2008) See more »

Soundtracks

Go Speed Racer Go
Written by Nobuyoshi Koshibe and Yoshida Yoshiyuki
Performed by Ali Dee and The DeeKompressors (as The Deekompressors)
Produced by Ali Dee and Jason Gleed
Ali Dee and The Deekompressors appear courtesy of DeeTown Entertainment
Contains samples from the "Speed Racer" classic television series (1966-1967)
Licensed courtesy of Speed Racer Enterprising, Inc.
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User Reviews

 
Pure popcorn fun for the whole family. Great job, Andy & Larry.

Well, what you've got here is a case of audience/critic disagreement. Obviously, this movie will get bashed by the critics because of its cartoonish and campy mood, but that's just it: the world shown on screen by the Wachowski brothers is marvelous. The animation is perfect for the atmosphere they're trying to create. Don't go in expecting Matrix-esquire effects, because there aren't any bullet time scenes. The effects used are so fitting for this movie because they're almost cartoonish and the movie doesn't take itself too seriously.

The film, an adaptation of the long running Japanese anime, revolves around natural racing phenomenon Speed (the wonderful Emile Hirsch) and his family, which somehow includes John Goodman and Susan Sarandon (whoever pulled off this casting deserves some kind of award). Oh yeah, and the casting directors managed to get Matthew Fox and Christina Ricci as well. What really stood out in this area is that everyone involved really understood the characters and the world that Speed Racer is supposed to display. It's not supposed to be overly serious, nor is it supposed to be that realistic either. With the warm performances of Hirsch, Goodman, and Ricci, you get transported into another world (isn't that the point of movies anyway?). Matthew Fox is also great as the mysterious Racer X, whose role is sort of misconstrued by the previews. He showed a different side that I didn't think he could on 'Lost'.

The visual effects, as I've said before, aren't going to be Matrix-esquire, but there are a few "whoa" factor sequences that had my jaw dropping. I also need to warn you that, if you can't take fast camera movements or rapid shots, be careful. It's not as bad as Cloverfield or Blair Witch (because the quickness only occurs in the race sequences), but I'd still try to grab a seat in the middle or back of the theater. The film is visually stunning outside of the races themselves as well. The buildings, the cities, the homes, the cars themselves...all beautiful.

The Wachowski brothers get an A+ for keeping the movie in the spirit of the show as much as they could (they really did a great job), however the film has a major flaw: a runtime of just under 2 and a half hours. That's a BIG no no for a movie that is obviously marketed towards kids, unless it has the names "Star Wars" or "Harry Potter" on it. The film also has a sensual scene or two featuring Ricci and Hirsch, not to mention occasional language.

My advice: don't listen to the critics, see this movie for the fact that it's pure entertainment for the audience, and it will take you away to a visually stunning world for a couple hours. Definitely an enjoyable movie for the entire family.


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

USA | Australia | Germany

Language:

English

Release Date:

9 May 2008 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Speed Racer: The IMAX Experience See more »

Filming Locations:

Potsdam, Brandenburg, Germany See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$120,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$18,561,337, 11 May 2008

Gross USA:

$43,945,766

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$93,945,766
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

SDDS | Dolby Digital | DTS

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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