What is your favorite car from the movies?
I’m too old to worry about what kind of car I drive. I just need it to get me from point A to point B without breaking down. Besides, cars are very expensive not only to buy but also to operate, because those wonderful gasoline companies are ripping us off left and right.
Nevertheless, there was a time when I loved cars. Perhaps it was a masculine trait, but you were proud to have a fancy car to show off. Whether this was due to a lack of girlfriends and a lack of certain parts of my anatomy, I can’t say.
I remember washing my car regularly so that it would shine and sparkle in the sun, standing out from the neighbors. It was a pathetic sight. Now I leave it to nature to take care of washing my car.
But I’m just saying. Most of my dream cars came from watching movies, because cars and movies are synonymous. I couldn’t afford such cars, but dreaming of getting behind the wheel and owning one didn’t hurt. I had a large collection of toy cars as a kid, and most of them were a direct result of watching movies. I later sold that entire set to buy my first Hi-Fi music system. As you get older, priorities change somewhat!
So, below are a few of my favorite cars from the movies, most of which I had, despite the fact that they were so small they could only fit a mouse! I’ve ignored the actual race cars and any cars from the Fast and Furious movies, as this series just makes me mad and infuriated!
Chitty Chitty Bang Bang.
Let’s start with one of the most famous cars. A great children’s movie that is shown every Christmas in the UK, and one that I always watch. My Chitty Chitty Chitty Bang Bang model had a lever that when pushed, the wings would swing out sideways. I’m sure she had other adaptations as well. Unfortunately, it didn’t fly, which was proven when my brother threw it across the room one day.
Herbie: Volkswagen Beatle.
Let’s face it, the Volkswagen Beatle can’t be called a glamorous car, but when the movie “The Love Bug” came out in 1968, it became popular. The movie spawned several sequels, some of which were better than others. No, I did not own a toy car as it did not fit into my collection.
However, when we lived overseas, my dad had a VW Beatle and it was the first car I was allowed to drive around an empty airfield. As soon as I saw the movie, the car took on a new life for me and I always wanted to paint the number 53 on the hood, but that wouldn’t have been very convenient as we were constantly coming and going from RAF bases.
Mini Cooper: Italian Job.
Another car that wasn’t quite so dazzling in the old days. Today they are much more fashionable. I wonder how much sales of this car increased after the famous Michael Caine movie was released.
My father also had a Mini that I took my driving test in. For some reason, he wouldn’t let me drive it on the subway or try to park it on a moving truck. Spoiled it!
Ford Mustang: Bullitt.
Who wouldn’t want to own a car like this after watching a pulse-pounding chase featuring Steve McQueen behind the wheel of a Ford Mustang GT? This movie drew me to Mustangs, and my dream has always been a Ford Mustang Mach 1, especially after seeing this model in Diamonds Are Forever. More on the famous Spyro a little later. Unfortunately, I had to stay with the little car. Nevertheless, I was very proud to own both the red and green versions of this model.
Pontiac Trans Am: Smokey and the Bandit.
I really liked the Smokey and the Bandit movies. You know, the ones starring Burt Reynolds and Sally Field. They were silly, but a lot of fun to watch when I was young. I also had a crush on Sally Field. Like most women, she never had the same feelings for me. If only she had met me, at least she had an excuse. I always dreamed of driving one of those cars with Sally Field by my side. What did Burt Reynolds have on me? Okay, enough about that.
Aston Martin and other great James Bond cars.
Like Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band, James Bond and cars go so well together. They are an integral part of the Bond movie series.
The first James Bond car we see is the Sunbeam Alpine Series II in Dr. No. However, the movie icon’s most quintessential car is the Aston Martin, which first appeared in the film Goldfinger in a DB5 version. I had one that fired little bullets in the front and a button easing shield in the back. The Aston Martin was then replaced by a DBS model in the movie On Her Majesty’s Secret Service.
Despite switching to BMWs for several of Pierce Bronson’s Bonds, various Aston Martin models have dominated the Bond franchise, including The Living Daylights and most of the Daniel Craig films. I’ve already mentioned the Ford Mustang from Diamonds Are Forever, but they even had a Rolls Royce Silver Cloud II in From the Point of View of Murder. I had that model in my little kit too.
There is even a Ferrari in the Goldeneye game. Every boy’s dream car, and I had some great kid versions. But one of my favorite Bond cars is the Lotus Esprit S1 from The Spy Who Loved Me. It even converted into a submarine, which was pretty cool.
Ford Capri: The Professionals.
As for other British cars, I always wanted to save up for a Ford Capri 2.8 Ghia, which was our likeness of the Ford Mustang. Basically a poor man’s version. I think you can see John Wayne driving the Capri version in the movie Brannigan, but I was mostly influenced by the British TV series The Professionals.
Before I was done with the cars from the movies and my tiny collection, I had several Cadillac models. Cadillac was featured in many movies such as Goodfellas, Raging Bull and Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas. I also had a Lincoln Continental. It was the closest thing to a luxury car. I don’t know the exact model, but it was the longest toy car I ever owned and it had a lot of doors. I’m sure this car has appeared in movies, but I can’t name any.
I realize I haven’t mentioned two very famous cars from the movies – the De Loren from Back to the Future and the famous Batmobile – but I always thought of them as cartoon cars rather than real cars. And this is coming from the man who just talked about “Chitty Chitty Bang Bang.” How hypocritical and inconsistent, I know. Who ever heard of a rocket car or a shield car? Next time they’ll put wings on it!
What other great movie cars did I miss? Here’s a song about cars that will make you think.