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Ford v Ferrari: 5 Best (& 5 Worst) Car Movies Of All Time -BB

The entirety is an engaging romp with a hefty engine start that builds up to the amazing Le Mans’ 66 sequence that both clicked for car fans and non-fans alike. Yet, there are other car-centered movies that came before, some good, some bad.

10 WORST: Herbie: Fully Loaded (2005)

While not generally one of the worst movies with Lindsay Lohan in the starring role, Herbie: Fully Loaded is a generic family movie that does its job, but never takes off swiftly. Though, the bar is kind of low already, due to the first Love Bug movie, starring Dean Jones.

Michael Keaton’s subdued performance as Lohan’s father and Matt Dillon’s over-the-top villain routine as Lohan’s rival on top of the endless cameos of NASCAR drivers doesn’t make for a great film. This is certainly strictly for children into cars.

9 BEST: The Great Race (1965)

Blake Edwards is an expert comedy craftsman, and his slapstick ensemble piece The Great Race adds to his roster of ingenious comedies. The movie packs an enormous cast of legends, including Jack Lemmon, Tony Curtis, Natalie Wood, Peter Falk, Vivian Vance, Hal Smith and Arthur O’Connell.

While the plot is basic rivalry, pitting steam motor racers together, on a race from New York to Paris, the comedy is a laugh-out-loud excellent, so good that it inspired Hanna-Barbera to do Wacky Races eventually. Its funniest moment came from its unexpected pie fight. 

8 WORST: Fast and Furious (2009)

The Fast and the Furious started off as Point Blank with cars. But every progressing movie became more and more redunant. The worst of the nine-movie roster is the fourth entry that reunites Dominic Toretto (Vin Diesel) and Brian O’Conner (the late Paul Walker).

The plot about avenging the death of Letty Ortiz (Michelle Rodriguez) is tertiary to the car carnage and the excessive action that the movie boasts. But on the plus side, it is a good ad for Gran Torino. Speaking of…

7 BEST: Gran Torino (2008)

Clint Eastwood is still a skilled director at his prime. And in this movie about a widowed Korean War veteran who defends his prized Ford automobile from Hmong gang boys, but finds solace on the local Hmong community, he brings the same menace as with Dirty Harry.

Eastwood is a growling presence both in front and behind the camera. And though it received criticism due to its negative portrayal of Asian-Americans, it was the first film to feature Hmong Americans. And who could not forget “Get off my lawn!”?

6 WORST: Cars 2 (2011)

The Cars movies has always been the black sheep of Pixar’s filmography. While the first Cars is a fine sendup of Doc Hollywood and Cars 3 is a decent tribute for mentors and apprentices, Cars 2 is an aggravating spy flick that places the movie’s comic relief, Mater, as the lead.

That shift of focus is jarring as racing or even love for cars was relegated to the side to headline Larry the Cable Guy’s annoying antics and lack of composure. As a Pixar film, Cars 2 is the worst.

5 BEST: Drive (2011)

Getaway drivers in movies are often depicted as masters of their craft, even though their ends do not justify the means. One of the best out there is the unnamed Driver (Ryan Gosling), who sidelines as a criminal-for-hire while he works as a stunt driver.

The bloody carnage is served, thanks to Nicolas Winding Refn’s direction. Yet the production of the entire piece, from the music to the cinematography, is a masterclass of stylish filmmaking that enhances the plot and the performances, most especially a scary Albert Brooks.

4 WORST: Need for Speed (2014)

Want to see an attempt to turn an EA racing videogame into the next Drive, only to end up in a more toxic Fast & Furious? Even for that specific taste, Need for Speed wouldn’t be worth recommending.

The entire 130-minute action is a bloated piece of junk that boasts its car eye candy, derivative action, misogynist undertones and to compensate for its convoluted plot. Even the talented cast that includes Aaron Paul, Imogen Poots, Dominic Cooper and Michael Keaton cannot save this unsurprising dreadful videogame adaptation.

3 BEST: Baby Driver (2017)

Baby Driver overcomes its out-of-place title to deliver arguably one of the best action films in the recent period of film. It says a lot that Edgar Wright was able to handle the action genre expertly with an action that is not only smoothly polished but also intricately choreographed. 

Like Drive, the movie boasts its sleek aesthetics through its music, its cinematography, its editing and its performances. The best proof of this is the first car chase where Baby (Ansel Elgort) swiftly outwits his pursuers in a red Subaru WRX.

2 WORST: Maximum Overdrive (1986)

Yes, the worst car movie is a Stephen King movie, written to the screen and directed by King himself. While the story it was based on centered on trucks, it still counts as it pits a demon truck against a ragtag group in a car stop.

Christine could have been the contender for having a ridiculous premise about a car with a sadistic personality of itself, but it was effective on its scares and genre set pieces. Maximum Overdrive only achieves as pure camp trash that is bogged down by King’s direction, half-hearted performances and the non-menacing possessed truck. Just dumb.

1 BEST: Mad Max: Fury Road (2015)

The Mad Max movies are pure cult action classics and a testament to George Miller’s artistry as a filmmaker. Each entry of the Mad Max universe would not be complete with its car chase. The first Mad Max kicked off that trend with intricate practicality, constructed on the Australian Outback.

The following movies carried that tradition (well, less for Beyond Thunderdome) until its apex of car chase carnage in Fury Road. Each vehicle is distinctive, from Max Rockatansky’s car to the amplifier-themed truck of the Doof Warrior. And the resulting car chase, which is really an endless Road Runner movie, is a glorious showcase of action filmmaking. The Mad Max series are indeed the best car movies, but Fury Road is the best of them all.

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