The Car (1977/Blu-ray/Scream! Factory) Review

In a small town in the southwest hell has came to it in the form of a black car. Now this is not just any black car, this one is out to kill anyone in it's path. It's up to the local police to stop the homicidal phantom car. New sheriff in town Wade Parent may just be the only who can stop the reign of terror that the car is bringing down on this town. Can Wade stop this car from hell or will he and the others become the next victims?!

In the wake of the success of the classic film Jaws there was other films that copied it's formula and unleashed their own version of it on the masses. Most the time it was something like "Grizzly (1976)" or "Piranha (1978)" that dealt with animals. In the case of The Car it's a homicidal car instead which changes it up, but still has a similar scenario of a small town being terrorized by something they can't control. For myself and many many others Jaws was and is an essential film. The Car is one I will be visiting over and over again. What you get with this film is some great acting, great directing, amazing suspense, and some damn good writing. Originally when hearing about this film I figured it'd be just another schlock fest, but oh boy I was wrong! Easiest wau I can put it is if you take Jaws and combine it with another classic Duel (which are by the same director) then you get The Car!
One of the shining points of this film is the cast which has James Brolin (The Amityville Horror), John Marley (Deathdream), R.G. Armstrong (Evilspeak), and Kyle Richards (Halloween) to just name a few of this fantastic cast. Each one of them truly brings their A-Game to this film and makes this what could of easily been a horrible film into something awesome. Generally speaking if it got James Brolin in it I will watch it without hesitation. I also love his  Burt Reynolds mustache which oddly suits him well. The antagonist of the film is of course the car and it plays well as this evil thing that Wade (Brolin) must take on. Those two characters play off one another well. I wanted to mention that the car used in the film is a 1971 Lincoln Continental Mark III which was customized to give it it's signature evil look. If I could have any film car it honestly would be this one or the 1966 batmobile.
The suspense in this film is fantastic and just builds and builds as the film moves on. One thing that this film did take from Jaws is how the music changes when the car appears in the scene. It truly hightens the suspense of the scene and really pulls you in and brings you to the edge of your seat. I really liked how they make the driver of the vehicle a mystery and do not give you true closure about it until the high tension ending. Still then you are in ways left in the dark to who was driving the car. I kinda wonder if Stephen King got some inspiration from this film for his book Christine which was released in 1983.
This film of course was made pre-cgi so all the stunt work and car stunts were real and on screen. Which is a million times better than how it would be done nowadays. I especially like this one scene where they have the car rip straight through this house, it looked awesome and had to of been hard to pull off. Another scene that sticks out with some unbreakable tension was the opening one that has the car chasing down these two bicyclist as they peddle for their lives. Like I said before this film has great suspenseand these two films mentioned are great examples of that.
Overall this is a gem among the "Jawsploitation" films of it's time and truly shines on so many levels. I highly recommend this film to anyone who is looking for something different and simply entertaining. Now I had not had the chance to see this film before this release so I can't compare it to any other releases of it, but I will say that it is a top notch release. The picture quality is excellent and the audio is excellent as well. It's definitely a film that if released with bad audio would of taken away from the viewing of this film. Quit just sitting there and go pick up the Scream Factory release of this awesome film!

-Daniel Lee

Director: Elliot Silverstein
Lead Actor/Actress: James Brolin
Genre: Horror/Thriller
Blu-ray Release Year: 2015
Theatrical Release Year: 1977
Time Length: 97 mins.
Rating: PG
Region Code: A
Release Company: Shout! Factory
Website: www.shoutfactory.com