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Badmovies.org Forum  |  Movies  |  Bad Movies  |  Cannonball Run movies « previous next »
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Author Topic: Cannonball Run movies  (Read 1823 times)
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« on: June 03, 2010, 09:42:19 AM »

I sat down and watched these two movies back to back. I remember watching these as a kid and enjoying them. What was I thinking?! In a sense, they are a guilty pleasure; they're so bad they're good. But man, the movies really are bad. The humor is pathetic. There really is no structure to the films. The movies are anti climatic. The characters are buffoons. It's like watching one of those old Dean Martin celebrity roasts. The stunts are all to obvious. Plus, they stocked up on a lot of third rate actors (some of them are dead now). Jeez, Jamie Farr? Tim Conway? Sid Caeser? Tony Danza? Jim Nabors? Jack Elam? Richard Kiel? Charles Nelson Reilly? Henry Silva? And the second movie is just another in long line of early 80's movies to feature an ORANGUTAN.

Bad movie, but kind of fun in a dumb way.
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AndyC
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« Reply #1 on: June 03, 2010, 11:34:31 AM »

The sequel was kind of pointless, but I like the first one. Not many of the cast are really leading actor material, but most were well known and well liked, whether they were character actors, singers, comedians, athletes or whatever. If you don't happen to be a fan of their earlier work, they might not seem too special. For me, half the fun is watching everybody either doing their thing (like Dean and Sammy) or spoofing themselves (like Roger Moore), with the other half being a lot of stunt driving and comical smashups, typical of Hal Needham films.

Is it a well-crafted comedy? Not particularly. Is it just a fun romp with a lot of famous people? I think so.
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« Reply #2 on: June 03, 2010, 01:21:11 PM »

You should check out Gumball Rally (1976). I am certain that this directly inspired Cannonball Run.
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« Reply #3 on: June 03, 2010, 10:59:11 PM »

Gumball Rally is a great movie, and actually both it and The Cannonball Run were based on the same real-life race held annually in the 1970s, as was a lesser-known movie, Cannonball, with David Carradine.

The really cool thing is that Hal Needham actually did drive in the real Cannonball Run a couple of years before the movie, using an ambulance as a cover.
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« Reply #4 on: June 03, 2010, 11:26:11 PM »

There was actually a third film.  SPEED ZONE! (1989).  Starred John Candy, Shari Belafonte, Donna Dixon, Matt Frewer, Joe Flaherty, The Smothers Brothers, Peter Boyle, and others.  They were going to call it CANNONBALL RUN III.  I've heard it's pretty terrible.
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« Reply #5 on: June 04, 2010, 04:36:49 AM »

yeah, "Speed Zone" wasn't very good. Highly recommend "Cannonball".Look for director Joe Dante in small role.

odd bit of trivia:
The main man behind the generall lee fan club actually built a recreation of the late 70's dodge ambulance from "The Cannonball Run" to compete in the Real Cannonball Run, now known as the "One Lap of America"

www.generalleefanclub.com
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AndyC
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« Reply #6 on: June 04, 2010, 07:36:15 AM »

Funny, I never got around to watching Speed Zone, and still don't really care to. I would normally at least want to check out a John Candy film I hadn't seen before, but not this one. Then again, I have no desire to see Wagons East either.

I suppose it says something about a comedy when the studio decides it's not good enough to be a Cannonball Run movie.
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« Reply #7 on: June 04, 2010, 09:27:51 AM »

Funny, I never got around to watching Speed Zone, and still don't really care to. I would normally at least want to check out a John Candy film I hadn't seen before, but not this one. Then again, I have no desire to see Wagons East either.

I suppose it says something about a comedy when the studio decides it's not good enough to be a Cannonball Run movie.

True. That's almost as bad as saying it's not good enough to be a Police Academy movie. Not quite as bad, but close.
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« Reply #8 on: June 04, 2010, 10:36:01 AM »

When I was a kid, I took Car and Driver magazine and remember the articles about the real Cannonball Run. One of the regular column writers actually started it, I think, but can't remember his name. Back then Car and Driver was very much an anti-establishment, us-against-the-world sort of magazine and took delight in pulling Road and Track's chain whenever possible, which was why I liked it. It still seems sort of surreal that a major magazine cooked up this highly illegal race, promoted it, and ran it for many years without getting sued or getting someone killed.   
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« Reply #9 on: June 04, 2010, 10:54:12 AM »

That was Brock Yates. I believe he was editor. Not only did he found the race, he also wrote The Cannonball Run and basically played the part of race organizer, which I suppose would be himself.

I suppose that would make The Cannonball Run the definitive Cannonball movie. But really, I think The Gumball Rally captured much more of the rebellious spirit of the race. Cannonball Run flouted authority and mocked the forces of public safety, but Gumball Rally commented more on the new, stricter traffic laws that inspired Yates to start the race.
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« Reply #10 on: June 04, 2010, 11:21:30 AM »

Andy, thanks for the memory jog. I remember one article, maybe by Yates, called "Relief  at Seventy", which was about how to urinate out the open driver's door at 70 MPH!   
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« Reply #11 on: June 04, 2010, 04:29:14 PM »

There was actually a third film.  SPEED ZONE! (1989).  Starred John Candy, Shari Belafonte, Donna Dixon, Matt Frewer, Joe Flaherty, The Smothers Brothers, Peter Boyle, and others.  They were going to call it CANNONBALL RUN III.  I've heard it's pretty terrible.

Seen this movie.  Not bad, but not good.  The woman riding with John Candy was pretty to look at though.   Cheers

Later,

John
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joejoeherron
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« Reply #12 on: June 05, 2010, 04:51:33 AM »

I always get a laugh at what Brock Yates says in his speech to the cannonballers before the race. It goes something like this
"and remember, no state has the death penelty for speeding, although I'm not sure about Ohio" 
I live 60 miles from Ohio, I know NEVER to speed in that state.
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