7.3/10
9,277
108 user 111 critic

Two-Lane Blacktop (1971)

A story of two men drag-racing across the U.S. in a primer grey '55 Chevy. Dennis Wilson is the mechanic, James Taylor is the driver.

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay) (as Rudolph Wurlitzer), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
David Drake ...
Needles Station Attendant
Richard Ruth ...
Needles Station Mechanic
Rudy Wurlitzer ...
Hot Rod Driver (as Rudolph Wurlitzer)
Jaclyn Hellman ...
Driver's Girl
Bill Keller ...
Texas Hitchhiker
...
Oklahoma Hitchhiker (as H.D. Stanton)
Don Samuels ...
Texas Policeman #1
Charles Moore ...
Texas Policeman #2
Tom Green ...
Boswell Attendant
W.H. Harrison ...
Parts Store Owner
...
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Storyline

The Driver and The Mechanic are two car freaks driving a 1955 Chevy throughout the southwestern U.S. looking for other cars to race. They are totally dedicated to The Car and converse with each other only when necessary. At a gas station, The Driver and The Mechanic, along with a girl who has ingratiated herself into their world, meet G.T.O., a middle-aged man who fabricates stories about his exploits. It is decided to have a race to Washington, D.C., where the winner will get the loser's car. Along the way, the race and the highway metaphorically depict the lives of these contestants as they struggle to their destination. Written by Rick Gregory <rag.apa@email.apa.org>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

You can never go fast enough...

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

28 October 1972 (Japan)  »

Also Known As:

A Estrada Não Tem Fim  »

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Box Office

Budget:

$850,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (Buenos Aires Festival Internacional de Cine Independiente)

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

According to the director's commentary on the first DVD release, the reason the movie took so long to release on DVD was Jim Morrison. Two Lane Blacktop's sound track has scenes in the movie where Doors music is playing in the background. Monte Hellman and the producers had trouble initially securing permission from Morrison's estate to release the film with its original content of Doors music on to the medium of DVD. For obvious reasons, such DVD permission was not part of the original agreement with the Doors in 1972. Eventually, the studio got permission to use the Doors music again and the DVD was released. See more »

Goofs

The cost/gallons numbers on the gas pumps change several times during the gas station race set-up scene. See more »

Quotes

G.T.O.: If I'm not grounded pretty soon, I'm gonna go into orbit.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The Car ... 1955 Chevrolet See more »

Connections

Referenced in At the Movies: Venice Film Festival 2010 (2010) See more »

Soundtracks

Hit the Road Jack
(uncredited)
Written by Percy Mayfield
Heard when the Driver and the Mechanic are eating in a diner
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Example of what makes a movie great...
28 July 1999 | by See all my reviews

Problems with music rights have kept this film from being seen much since its release, which is a real shame. Recently, the Roan Group released a laserdisc version (not sure if there is a VHS or DVD version), which I rented on a total whim. It turned out to be one of those rare treasures that not only lives up to its hype--it exceeds it. Anyone who wants to know why so many of today's films are sub-par would do themselves a favor by exploring this title. The problem with movies today is that everything is so formulaic, characters (if any are present) are forced to react in completely illogical ways just so the plot can hit prefabricated beats. "Two Lane Blacktop" follows the characters and lets the plot flow from the dynamics between them. Add to that some really unique characters and what you end up with is a movie that's always coming at you from the most unexpected angles, and not one second of it feels false or forced. The writing, directing and acting are dead-on, with Warren Oates a stand-out (his performance should be studied by anyone who wants to act), and James Taylor surprisingly intense and charismatic. It should be noted that this is not an action movie, so don't go into it looking for suspense or great racing scenes. Rather, you should sit back and let this movie work its almost invisible magic on you. And don't be surprised if you're still thinking about it days later.


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