HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Vast of Night, The
Furies, The
Days of the Bagnold Summer
Black Power Mix Tape 1967-1975, The
Apartment 1BR
1776
Parasite
Looking On the Bright Side
Take Me Somewhere Nice
Simon
Birds of Prey: And the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn
Gentlemen Broncos
To the Stars
Lady Godiva Rides Again
Angelfish
Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ
Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood, A
This is a Hijack
Loved One, The
Jumanji: The Next Level
Krabi 2562
Call of the Wild, The
Diary of a Country Priest
Sea Fever
Throw Down
Grudge, The
Green Man, The
Specialists, The
Convoy
Romantic Comedy
Going Ape!
Rabid
Infinite Football
Little Women
Camino Skies
Ema
Another Shore
Cry Havoc
Legend of the Stardust Brothers, The
Mystery Team
   
 
Newest Articles
Who Watched The Watchmen?
The Golden Age of Colonic Irrigation: Monty Python Series 4 on Blu-ray
Lady of Pleasure: Lola Montes on Blu-ray
Take You to the Gay Bar: Funeral Parade of Roses on Blu-ray
Hit for Ms: Mark Cousins' Women Make Film on Blu-ray
Look Sinister: The 1000 Eyes of Dr. Mabuse on Blu-ray
Star Wars Triple Threat: The Tricky Third Prequel and Sequel
I Can See for Miles: The Man with the X-Ray Eyes on Blu-ray
Too Much Pressure: The Family Way on Blu-ray
The Alan Key: Alan Klein and What a Crazy World on Blu-ray
A Japanese Ghost Story: Kwaidan on Blu-ray
The Zu Gang: Zu Warriors from the Magic Mountain on Blu-ray
Reality TV: The Year of the Sex Olympics on DVD
The Young and the Damned: They Live By Night on Blu-ray
Mind How You Go: The Best of COI on Blu-ray
Der Kommissar's in Town: Babylon Berlin Series 3 on DVD
The End of Civilisation as We Know It: The 50th Anniversary
The Whalebone Box: The Andrew Kotting Interview
Being Human: The Elephant Man on 4K UHD Blu-ray
It's! Monty Python's Flying Circus Series 3 on Blu-ray
Put the Boot In: Villain on Blu-ray
The Children's Film Foundation Bumper Box Vol. 2: Vic Pratt Interview
All the Lonely People: Sunday Bloody Sunday on Blu-ray
Desperate Characters: Beat the Devil on Blu-ray
Chansons d'Amour: Alfie Darling on Blu-ray
   
 
  Death Race 2000 Road Rage
Year: 1975
Director: Paul Bartel
Stars: David Carradine, Simone Griffeth, Sylvester Stallone, Mary Woronov, Roberta Collins, Martin Kove, Louisa Moritz, Don Steele, Joyce Jameson, Carle Bensen, Sandy McCallum, Paul Laurence, Harriet Medin, Vince Trankina, Bill Morey, Fred Grandy, Leslie McRae
Genre: Comedy, Action, Science FictionBuy from Amazon
Rating:  7 (from 1 vote)
Review: The year 2000 in the United States of America sees the 20th Annual Transcontinental Race held, with returning champion Frankenstein (David Carradine) the big favourite with the fans. He has recently been rebuilt after yet another crash, with his limbs replaced, which may well be why he wears a leather suit, helmet and mask. One of his four rivals include Machine Gun Joe Viterbo (Sylvester Stallone), a muscleheaded thug who is determined to win this year no matter what the cost. But there will be an added element of danger to the event this time around: a group of terrorists hellbent on taking down the fascist rulers and destroying the race, all part of their campaign to stop the violence...

Remember when the year 2000 was a science fiction year? Now it's ancient history, but you can transport yourself back to those days when the future was exciting with films like this one, which was rushed into production, so the story goes, to cash in on the anticipated success of Rollerball. As it turned out, more people enjoyed the devil may care attitude of Death Race 2000, which had been loosely adapted from an Ib Melchior short story by regular associates of producer Roger Corman Robert Thom and Charles B. Griffith, for this amped up the comedy.

But not at the expense of the action, of which there is plenty, with the idiosyncratically souped-up cars driven along the Californian highways and looking as camp as the rest of the film, yet with a real oomph as it may be all a joke, but Corman and company knew what their audiences wanted to see. Frankenstein's vehicle, for example, is designed to resemble a lizard, complete with sharp teeth, and Machine Gun Joe has actual machine guns affixed to the front of his, along with a large dagger. Why is this car so designed? Because the competitors are awarded points not only for fast speeds, but killing pedestrians as well.

The other three racers are Calamity Jane (Mary Woronov), who drives a bull-styled car, Matilda the Hun (Roberta Collins), a self-proclaimed Nazi, and Nero the Hero (Martin Kove), a would-be Roman gladiator whose navigator even thinks he's a hasbeen. But Nero has the right idea, because the Death Race is really harking back to the days of old Rome, sating the populace's bloodlust to distract from the totalitarian government that controls them. This film has something to say about the way sport (and the media, for that matter) is used as a channel for aggression in the masses, but thankfully it never beats you over the head with a message.

In fact, you could simply watch Death Race 2000 on the level of a slapstick cartoon, and there is a definite impression that this is what director Paul Bartel (who also appears as Frankenstein's doctor) is aiming for. The rebels are all earnest types who are sent up as much as everyone else, and they have infiltrated Frankenstein's orbit with his new navigator Annie (Simone Griffeth), but whose side is he really on? When given the chance to run over terminal patients he opts to charge into the "smug" doctors instead, and there are signals that he is not entirely the puppet of the President (Sandy McCallum). Add to this Stallone providing many of the laughs in a typical performance, only one that's supposed to be funny, along with gratuitous nudity, exploding heads and roaring engines and you have a daft but enthusiastic satire that operates just as well as an action B-movie - in a way this was the Robocop of the seventies. Music by Paul Chihara.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 3716 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star is the best at shouting?
Arnold Schwarzenegger
Brian Blessed
Tiffany Haddish
Steve Carell
Olivia Colman
Captain Caveman
Sylvester Stallone
Gerard Butler
Samuel L. Jackson
Bipasha Basu
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Enoch Sneed
  Hannah Prosser
Andrew Pragasam
Darren Jones
  Butch Elliot
  Rachel Franke
Paul Smith
   

 

Last Updated: