7 Amazing Movie Car Chases: Do They Top the New ‘Fast X’ in Theaters Now?

Bullett, Steve McQueen, car race
Everett Collection

With Fast X in theaters now, the 10th film in the Fast & Furious franchise that began back in 2001 and brought us some of the most epic chases of modern-day film, you can bet that the cars will be racing to your local theater as fans are racing to see it.

Here we take a look at some of the best car chases that graced the screen outside of the Fast & Furious franchise. Now, pump the brakes. This list is in date order, as to when the film premiered, because we are leaving it up to you to fight over which is the best of this mix of seven. Think one of these is a total crash? Tell us what film(s) should be added to this list and which one takes the checkered flag for best car chase?

Bullitt (1968)

Probably the granddaddy of car chases, this Steve McQueen film is thought by many as the chase that inspired all others. Screaming around San Francisco streets, the film featured Steve McQueen, Robert Vaughn, Jacqueline Bisset and Robert Duvall to name but a few. But the real feature is the chase that influenced all chases. Here is the trailer to the film, the full chase lasts around 10 minutes in this thriller.

French Connection (1971)

William Friedkin is a master, there, I said it. In 1971 he had the dashboard camera, handheld camera and the legendary Gene Hackman at his disposal as he created a chase sequence through New York City that is talked about in film schools and film classes to this day. Strap in for this insane ride. Here is Friedkin talking before the American Film Institute about the scene.

Gone in 60 Seconds (1974)

This classic has been remade with Nicolas Cage in the lead, but trust me, go back to the original and check out the carnage of cars.

Smokey and the Bandit (1977)

OK, so this one is cheating in a way. Burt Reynolds and Sally Field tear through the countryside in that classic Pontiac Trans-Am while Jackie Gleason follows close behind in “hot pursuit.” All the while an 18-wheeler driven by Snowman (Jerry Reed) is making a run with a load of Coors. It probably couldn’t get made today, but the stunt work alone makes this worth checking out again.

The Blues Brothers (1980)

Jake (John Belushi) and Elwood (Dan Aykroyd) are on a “mission from God” in this action/comedy from 1980. The backdrop is Chicago as the two outrun police.

Terminator 2: Judgement Day (1991)

OK, so this one is more than a car chase really. Director James Cameron and star Arnold Schwarzenegger took the car chase scene and ramped it to 11 with this motorcycle and truck chase. An amazing sequence by any standard, as the truck smashes through a wall your heart will pump faster than you knew it could.

Ronin (1998)

Ronin features not one but three memorable chase sequences in the film. The final chase scene features a Paris backdrop, 300 stunt drivers and cars reaching speeds up to 125 miles per hour. Everything we need to get the adrenaline pumping.

Share your favorite, and yes we acknowledge the Fast series has its share of great car chases over the years too!

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April 2018

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