My son and I were recently watching the ‘Fast and the Furious 7’ (how many more can there be!!!) and I got to thinking that for a movie to be great there has to be at least one good car chase. We discussed some of the best movie car chases and whilst he kept reverting back to the ‘Fast and the Furious’, I tried to explain that I thought the best one is what many regard as the first ever engines roaring, rubber burning, metal scraping, gas guzzling, good guy chasing bad guy scenes ever.
Unlike the car chases of today, this one had no cinematic computerized wizardry or background music, just real pictures and the raw “roar” of 2 super V8’s … a Ford Mustang 390 GT 2+2 Fastback and a Dodge Charger 440 Magnum, racing through the street of San Francisco. Released in 1968, I’m talking of the classic 10 minute and 53 second Steve McQueen chase in the movie ‘Bullitt’.
What I love about it are the stories associated with the shooting such as; how can one green VW Beetle be passed so many times, how can one car lose six hubcaps during a chase; and spot the scene which wasn’t planned but the Director loved it so much he kept it in the movie – where Steve McQueen mistakenly over shoots a corner. Oh to be as cool as Steve McQueen !
Another of the many stories to come out of the Bullitt car chase is that according to Dodge fans, the Challenger had to slow down for the Mustang to catch it! But the one I love most relates to the existence of that now Famous Green 1968 Mustang and I think this Vanity Fair article from earlier this year can answer that: Vanity Fair link