This year had a lot of great and good movies that I thoroughly enjoyed. It’s just too bad we didn’t really get even one good bad-ass car chase or epic car stunt, or even a decent custom car, to nerd out over in movies released in 2016.
Of course I haven’t seen every single movie released in 2016. I wouldn’t even if I could. But I did see almost all of the ones with big budgets or big names attached, and typically that’s where you can find some decent use of automobiles. But not this year.
So what would be the contenders for cool car shit in movies this year? Deadpool? Batman V Superman? Um. Jason Bourne? Ghostbusters? Let’s go through some of these and see if we get anywhere.
First up let’s tackle the new Ghostbusters wagon, which swapped out the iconic 1959 Caddy for a 1980-something Cadillac Fleetwood Station Wagon. It’s fine. It didn’t blow my mind. Jalopnik’s Jason Torchinsky came up with much, much better suggestions if you want to “modernize” the Ghostbusters. The car we ended up with was not great. Not really good either. Moving on.
Jason Bourne? You mean that minute-and-a-half of the S.W.A.T. van killing 20 random motorists on the Las Vegas Strip? Remember when the Bourne movies had extended chase sequences, and the car chase bits were through gritty European towns in something like an old taxi or shitty police car where everyone involved was careful to avoid collateral damage? And the actual design of the chase by the stunt team and the way the writing and directing captured the intensity and made it a valued part of the story? Yea, none of that was in 2016's Jason Bourne. What a letdown of a movie and what an unmemorable car “chase”.
What about those superhero movies we got? If we’re talking cars, that’s pretty much only Batman V Superman and maybe—maybe—Captain America: Civil War.
Civil War was kind of cool because of the big face-off at the airport, but beyond that it revealed that Tony Stark’s rich-ass parents, specifically his bad-ass dad, drove around in a Cadillac Brougham. They couldn’t give Iron Man’s folks something cooler to drive?
And then in Batman V Superman, we get this extensive chase scene with the new-new Batmobile. It was... in the movie. It featured some overly-computer-animated stunts and obviously unrealistic physics that were distracting. It also featured Batman dragging a car full of bad guys behind him and then pendulum-swinging them into another truck full of bad guys, killing them all in a violent, terrifying explosion. This is Batman?
(Bruce Wayne did arrive to his party in an Aston Martin DB Mk. III and him and the movie do get major jalop credit for that, at least.)
Then there’s the other superhero movie—Deadpool. I think we can all agree that this was not only a great, fun movie, but it also had one of the best—officially the best unless I am challenged in the comments—car scenes in any movie released this year. And it happened right at the start! Kind of.
But yea, the action scene, which was “leaked” to get the movie made in the first place, featuring Deadpool diving off an overpass into a bad guy motorcade and killing everybody was a very bad-ass superhero action scene that thankfully took place, making use of some Cadillac Escalades and a couple of motorcycles. The opening credits in still-motion of the crash is hilarious and “fresh”, and the actual scene itself—which plays out over multiple parts of the movie—is exciting and fun.
Was there anything better? That Hell Or High Water movie had an extended shootout and chase in a Ford Bronco, which was pretty memorable. A lot of people liked that movie. I didn’t not-like it.
I’m really struggling to think of any other movies this year. Keep in mind some really good movies with good car shit all happened last year. I’m talking about Spectre, The Man From U.N.C.L.E., Mad Max, and Furious 7.
Maybe Cars 3, The Fate of the Furious, xXx 3: The Return of Xander Cage, The LEGO Batman Movie, Logan, Baby Driver, Blade Runner 2049 and/or Kingsman: The Golden Circle come up with something better in 2017.