Top Ten Movie Chases

Rishi Vaja

Talking Pictures alias






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There have been a million Top Ten charts about the Movie Chase, however this Top Ten list forgoes the usual suspects and opts for a different blend.

10 – Catch Me If You Can (2002)

Tom Hanks chases Leonardo DeCaprio throughout the whole movie. At one point, DeCaprio sweet-talks his way out of jail by convincing Hanks that he’s a special agent. Highly unlikely. But wait a minute, it’s a true story.

9 – Robocop (1987)

During the finale, “Rocket” Romano rams his truck into a vat of toxic waste in the vain attempt of killing the metallic rozzer. Emerging from the toxic waste like an extra from one of Peter Jackson’s old movies, Romano stumbles into an ensuing car chase involving Boddicker and Lewis ending with Boddicker making mince meat out of the ER doctor. When Romano’s bonce goes skyward, the audience can’t help but remember one of Boddicker’s earlier ripostes – “do you fly, Bobby?” 

8 – Point Break (1991)

Keanu Reeves chases Dirty Dancer-cum-Surf God Patrick Swayze through the streets of LA, through people’s houses, back alleyways and what-not. However the chase comes to an abrupt end when Reeves foolishly forgets that his knee wasn’t what it used to be and jumps off a wall like a bad contestant from the Krypton Factor. The upshot being: Swayze hotfoots it away leaving Reeves firing his gun at birds in the sky.

7 – The Matrix Reloaded (2003)

Matrix Reloaded. All Rights Reserved.Should have been the car chase to end all car chases but the hype proved too much for the brothers and their cigar-chomping producer. What we are left with is an undeniably cool chase sequence but there doesn’t seem to be enough destruction and what is destroyed looks too computerized. But maybe that’s what the Matrix is all about…

6 – Live and Let Die (1973)

Bond films have always come up with ingenious chase sequences whether it involves hovercrafts, tanks or airplanes. In terms of speedboat chases it was either this or Face-Off. Even though the latter is more action-packed, this 1973 effort edges it in terms of more fun, more wit and just Roger Moore.

5 – The Terminator (1984)

Yes, T2 has more spectacular stunts, SFX and chases, however The Terminator grips like a vice and hurtles the viewer from one stunning chase sequence to another accumulating with a truck exploding and Arnie walking out of the fireball like an endo-skeleton badass. Every single chase is shot in a raw and gritty style which was sadly glossed over for its flashier sequel which lacks the energy of the original.

4 – The French Connection (1971)

No list of Top Ten Chases is complete without The French Connection or Bullitt. Although Bullitt is too cool for school, The French Connection pips it to the winning post because of the fact that it was shot for real in the streets without proper safety. Thank god Morgan Freeman wasn’t out driving Miss Daisy.

3 – Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom (1984)

The mine cars, taking the left exit, Indy not taking the left, the two following mine cars, the brake lever snapping, Short Round being stretched across the tracks, the hundreds of gallons of water, a gap in the tracks that has to be jumped, dead ends, Indy’s foot on fire screaming for water. It’s still a classic.

2 – The Italian Job (1969)

Forget the remake, this is truly the Mini Coopers finest hour. Zooming around Turin like there’s no tomorrow, the Mini getaway scene is classic Brit Cool. Recently paid homage to by Doug Liman in The Bourne Identity. All together now – “This is the self preservation society!”

1 – Akira (1988)

So what it’s an anime cartoon, the opening motorbike chase through the city makes everything else pale in comparison. Simply breathtaking to watch, the neon glare burns itself onto the retina of the viewer. Still guaranteed to make your eyesight look blurry after two days.
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Material Copyright © 2003 Nigel Watson