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Action - Cars

Days of Thunder (1990)

Duration1h 47m
RatingsUK: 12, USA: PG-13, Denmark: 15 
Source of storyAn orignal story developed by Robert Towne and Tom Cruise
DirectorTony Scott
Writers/ScriptRobert Towne
StarringTom Cruise, Robert Duvall, Nicole Kidman, Randy Quaid, Cary Elwes, John C. Reilly, 
RatingsIMDb: 6.1/10 by 84,851 people.  Rotten Tomatoes: 38% by 65 reviewers. Review2view: 5/10.

Elevator Pitch: Tim Daland a car dealer persuades retired car builder Harry Hogge to build a NASCAR car and hires an open wheeler driver, Cole Trickle to drive it. The team, badged as City Chevrolet, has no success despite Trickle being a fast but volatile driver. He has a rival, Rowdy Burns, resulting in damage during the races, and in the end requiring intervention from the boss of NASCAR. The two men are injured in a massive pile up, Trickle recovering but Burns being left with problems. Trickle meets neurosurgeon, Claire Lewicki and they romance. As the Daytona 500 approaches how can Trickle get back on the track?

Content: No sex or nudity but quite a bit of beer drinking in the way of race teams. Harry builds the race car in a barn. Cole is employed and tested on an empty track. Thereafter races take place. Many cars dash round the oval tracks. The drivers are pictured looking grimly through their windscreens, and there are many shots of cars running into each other, and being squeezed against the perimeter wall.

A View: I admit to not being a fan of oval racing, although there are obviously a lot of Americans who love it. There are a lot of shots in the film of packed audiences at the events. I might have enjoyed this outing  a bit if there had not been the extraordinary levels of irresponsibility as the drivers crashed into each other, which should have resulted in some of them being banned for life, I would have thought. There is also a lot of shouting, and I was unconvinced by Nicole Kidman as a neurosurgeon. So, unless you are already a NASCAR fan, give this outing a miss.

There are some decent motor racing films but only one so far reviewed on this site: Le Mans ’66 is terrific.

About Victor R Gibson

Author of this site three technical books and two novels


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