Car chases in movies are as American as apple pie, but it took an Australian-directed film to inspire this tribute video.
Michael Mirasol, an independent film critic and blogger, put together this fantastic edit of some of the best car chases in the last fifty years. We might take them for granted, but there is a ballet to sending thousands of pounds of metal screaming down a narrow road or weaving in and out of traffic:
Here's what inspired the video, which he wrote over at Movie Mezzanine:
This video was borne out of a single shot in George Miller’s action epic Mad Max: Fury Road, when the biker gang chases Furiosa’s war rig, bounding off desert foothills in relentless pursuit. Strangely enough, the scene triggered memories of Steven Spielberg’s E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial, when Elliot and his friends pedal away from pursuing police on foothills of the suburban kind. Could these two moments have been linked? I love to think so. But only Mr. Miller surely knows.
This labor of love pays tribute to Miller’s ambition, discipline, and filmmaking command that is joyous to behold. It also conveys my admiration for Tom Holkenberg’s pulsating and evocative musical scores which would make any action sequence feel more alive and full of purpose. I try to remember the common threads of noteworthy car chases, which the world of Mad Maxbrings to life so vividly. I was surprised to see the connections I made. I hope you make them too.
Speaking of Bullitt, here's the chase from that movie:
As a bit of a side note, I think it's worth sharing this video about how they made the insane chase for The French Connection, which very well could have resulted in some serious injuries:
Video is no longer available: www.youtube.com/watch?v=ugrhPlRcWo4
And you may have already seen this, but the BTS for Mad Max: Fury Road shows some of the crazy stunts they did to make these car chases happen:
Video is no longer available: www.youtube.com/watch?v=_Wc58__rEFQ
The brave stunt people who make these scenes happen deserve our utmost respect, because even in the safest and most choreographed chase there is the potential for serious injury. No major action movie is complete without a chase scene, and while they all take incredible skill to pull off, just like with movies, some stand above the rest.