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Overall Rating: 5.00 based on 3 ratings

The most famous car chase scene of all time?

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jaywilton (25)
Great..plus about the last Gene Hackman film I could watch more than once..4
edt4 (89)
I know Bullitt came first, and was certainly a more than impressive car chase scene (particularly given the geography of San Francisco...those streets were scary when I went down them at a Grandma-driving-home-from-church-style speed), but to me, the champ, the absolute King of car-chase scenes, is the one from "French Connection," which is also one of the classic films of modern cinema (an old, old girlfriend of mine lived in the neighborhood in Brooklyn where they filmed this). Gene Hackman, as Popeye Doyle (based on the real-life detective Eddie Egan, who appears in a bit part), is nothing less than astonishing here. Although he's appeared in a lot of dreck in recent years, he's still one of the greatest of modern American film-actors. This is the kind of role they wouldn't do today. Popeye is a drunk, a racist, a womanizer, an obsessed and jingoistic zealot (the real Eddie Egan once had hopes of being a professional baseball player). If they were making this film today, Popeye would be played by Tom Hanks (10 years ago, he'd be played by Kevin Costner), and he'd be a paragon of WASP virtue, all-American decency and Reagan-style can-do spirit. In other words, as boring as a plank of wood. And, consequently, the movie would also be as dull as week-old dish-water. Thankfully, the film-makers of the late 1960's/early 1970's were more in tune with the reality of human nature and urban interaction. But, getting back to the car chase, it's one of the most thrilling I've ever seen (if not the most thrilling). Close runners-up? Bullitt, of course, and "The 7-Ups", which was a relatively mediocre movie, but had a great car chase featuring one of my favorite character actors, Richard Lynch. They just don't make 'em like this anymore.7
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