Monster 50

The Car

It glides through the desert on a long strip of black top like a dark knife through water, waiting for some hapless soul to enter its path. None are safe from this vehicle of death; cyclers, runners, hitchhikers, surly town folk, police cars, marching bands, or innocent houses.

This 1977 movie starring James Brolin is the very definition of a guilty pleasure for most. It opened to…let’s just say not so stellar reviews. However, if you have nothing to do one hot summer night, and a big bowl of popcorn in your lap, you could do worse than watch this little horror movie that thinks it can (though the Car would gleefully run the poor little blue engine off the tracks).

The vehicle itself was designed by the great George Barris on a customized 1971 Lincoln Continental Mark III. It looks distinct cutting a path through the stark Utah canyons as it terrorizes everyone for no apparent reason but to sow death. Perhaps it truly is driven by the devil. Some say there is no driver at all.

As a runner-up in the same category, I have to mention Christine. A book written by Stephen King, and a movie directed by the incomparable John Carpenter, about a cursed 1958 Plymouth Fury. I love me some Carpenter films (and the opening to Christine is one of the best), not to mention King novels, but The Car bumps Christine off the road. Now, if Carpenter wanted to remake The Car…that would be a match made in heaven.

On your way home tonight, watch the road, and listen for the roar of a hungry 1971 Lincoln engine. It just may be the last thing you ever hear.