Top 10 Racing Movies (Not Including Senna)
The movies start at sunset, of course. A party and classic-car rally is planned for Oct. 5. By next year, the Hollywood studios will stop sending canisters of film to theaters, so without expensive digital projectors to show movies on hard drives, many independent exhibitors will go out of business. The digital transition has been especially hard on North America’s 400 drive-ins. Projecting an image onto a large drive-in screen requires a high-powered machine that could cost $80,000–a big investment for a seasonal business. This summer, Honda sponsored Project Drive-In as a promotional tie-in with the upcoming movie “Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2.” It awarded digital projectors to the top five drive-ins in a national poll. Although the humble Starlite did not make the cut in the initial voting, Honda extended the offer to four more facilities, and today the Starlite got the joyous news. The other recipients include first-round winners in Saco, Maine.; Honor, Mich.; Graham, Tex.; McHenry, Ill. and Newburg, Ore.; and second-round winners in Elizabethtown, Tenn., Monetta, S.C. and Ocala, Fla. This means that the four nearest drive-ins to St. Louis–the Starlite, the Skyview in Belleville, the Skyview in Litchfield, Ill. and the 19 in Cuba, Mo.–will be digital in 2014. Nationwide, hundreds of small-town drive-ins face closure at the end of this season; but for St.
Megan Crain: Book fans deserve better movies
Grand Prix (1966) Same deal here. Grand Prix is five years older than Le Mans, and it stars Jim Garner, who also went on to race competitively. John Frankenheimer directs, and you can feel his influence in every shot, as the Formula One cars jockey for position in Monaco and elsewhere. Again, the off-track romance is unnecessary and distracting, and it takes away from an otherwise engaging film. Skip that nonsense and stick with the racing and youll have a blast. The Last American Hero (1973) The fictionalized account of the life of Junior Johnson, heavily borrowing from Tom Wolfes article for Esquire magazine of the same title. The Last American Hero stars a young Jeff Bridges in the title role, as a moonshiner-turned-NASCAR champion. This movie, and the Esquire story its based on, accounts for about 95 percent of the urban myth associated with NASCAR racing in its nascent days. Its a tough film to find now, but its well worth watching. Gumball Rally (1976) The Gumball Rally is the fictionalized version of Brock Yatess Cannonball Baker Sea-to-Shining-Sea Memorial Trophy Dash, conceived as a protest against the national 55 mile per hour speed limit. Many of the characters in the film are loosely based on real competitors in the rally. For example, pro Trans Am driver Tony (Tony A-to-Z) Adamowicz competed with Oscar Koveleski and Brad Neimcek in a Chevy Van that was parodied with a 1971 GMC Acme Plumbing van in the film. The entire movies a blast. Dont worry much about plot, continuity or script. Thats not the point.
When the plans to make more movies based upon young adult novels were announced, it was no surprise that comparisons to Twilight began. But, the most recent films failed to catch on as the earlier series had. Beautiful Creatures and The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones, both based on young adult book series, were both critical and commercial flops. Mortal Instruments received a positive review from just 12 percent of critics on RottenTomatoes.com. In addition, it cost $120 million to make and market, according to BuzzFeed. Through four weeks, the film had made $29.6 million. Beautiful Creatures received positive reviews from 46 percent of critics. In addition, the film made just $7.5 million in its first weekend, according to E! Online. The first Twilight movie made $7 million just from its opening midnight showing. Beautiful Creatures and Mortal Instruments have been called poor rip-offs of Twilight. Its the perfect movie for those who thought the Twilight series just wasnt quite teenage girly enough, said Bill Goodykoontz of The Arizona Republic, about The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones. Movie directors and producers seem to have the false idea that as long as there are pretty boys and supernatural happenings, teenage girls will be dying to see their movies. If this were the case, every single movie made would be a roaring success.