The automotive and film industries have been linked together for as long they’ve shared time. The list of iconic cars in cinema reads like a DuPont Registry’s “best of" issue and has catapulted these objects of utility to the status of Greek Gods. Cars like Vanishing Point’s Dodge Challenger to The Italian Job’s Mini and even James Bond’s Aston Martin DB5 in Goldfinger. These cars have transcended their utilitarian roots to become as iconic as the characters they ferried.
There really hasn’t been a car movie in recent history that has moved audiences the way those cars have. Vanishing Point’s plot was as thin as a bride’s veil but it still managed to excite the populous in a way that only a great car film can. The following is a short-list of cars that need their own film not just an appearance or a lame Michael Bay style product placement cameo. Each of these cars needs an agent, a close-up, and top billing on a film, bad. The way Shia Lebeouf needs to leave Hollywood, bad.
2013 Aston Martin DBS – Because why not? It’s an Aston. Their cars have been legendarily iconic since the DB5. Any car in the current range is an exercise in classy car pornography and the current DBS is no exception. The sharper, more aggressive styling has just enhanced the beauty of the previous model year and begs to be immortalized in celluloid.
2013 Alfa Romeo 4C – Its main rival is the Porsche Cayman but don’t be fooled, this is a serious little road car. The 4C has got the grunt and charisma that a proper film car should have, and let’s not forget; it’s an Alfa. Alfa Romeo is synonymous with aesthetic beauty the way Victoria’s Secret is synonymous with sticky catalogue pages in a fourteen year old’s sock drawer.
2013 Fiat 500 Abarth Esseesse – Though the marketing here in America is filled with nonsensical celebrity endorsements, the Esseesse is clearly a force to be reckoned with. The 500’s market share in Europe is undeniable and is on a steady incline in the States. Yes, that does mean oversaturation but let’s be serious for a moment. If a film were to come out and make your daily driver a hero you’d feel a bit better about driving a little city runabout in a country filled with SUV behemoths plugging up the roadways.
2013 Toyota GT86 – The Toyota GT86 was one of the most anticipated cars in recent history making every automotive journalist pant and beg for even the slightest of scraps. I understand that it’s only a Toyota (and nothing about that is exciting in the least) but this throwback car has the same appeal as the Fiat 500. It’s a car for everyone that can make you feel like the hero of your life’s film; no matter how miserable your existence is.
2014 Jaguar F-Type – Not since the E-Type has a Jaguar caused such a ruckus in the automotive industry and it’s no wonder why. It has the sort of looks that make the likes of Angelina Jolie seem pedestrian by comparison. The thing about the F-Type is that it oozes charisma out of every accent line and angle. There’s not a single angle you could put to this car that would make it look anything other than spectacular. The F-Type is ready for its close-up Mr. Deville.
Eagle Speedster – Let us start by mentioning that, yes, this is basically an E-Type Jaguar and yes, this is a car made by men in a shed. But if you thought the original was flawless, then the Eagle Speedster would be likened to man playing God and making the Lord Almighty bow before us in awe. The slightest most delicate of nips and tucks have made the most beautiful car in history even more exquisite in a way that makes knees go weak. There doesn’t need to be a plot. There doesn’t need to be major star power backing it. Just get it from every angle and let the masses go sweaty and cross-eyed in their seats.
What seems to be next for car films is Need For Speed staring Aaron Paul from Breaking Bad fame. The film based on the game released it’s first trailer recently and it’s seems to be staying true to it’s videogame roots while injecting a heavy bit of fluff that, quite frankly, is needed in an adaptation like this. From someone that is familiar with the game series the story does seem a bit thin. As if it was intended for Jason Statham but he couldn’t be bothered to make another film that involves him driving a fast car in an act of revenge. What I’m more interested in is the blatant car porn going on in the trailer. Everything from Keonigseggs to a Ford tuned Mustang graces the all too short trailer like dirty back-alley peepshow. Even the all-new McLaren P1 makes an all-too-brief appearance in the trailer.
Paul’s character seems to take a liking to the Mustang in the trailer but that car has had it’s fifteen minutes of fame via Bullitt and countless other films. It’s understandable that the filmmakers chose an American car but lets be real; there’s no way a Mustang can keep up with a Bugatti Veyron… ever. Need For Speed doesn’t release till next year so us car enthusiasts will have to wait for our fix. Till then, here’s a list of iconic car films in no particular order:
Vanishing Point (1971)
Gone in Sixty Seconds (1974)
The Italian Job (1969)
The Wraith (1986)
Smokey and the Bandit (1977)
The Love Bug (1968)
The Cannonball Run (1981)