Director: John Hough
Director: John Hough
Resolution: 608 x 306
Aspect ratio: 16:9
Peter Fonda ... Larry
Susan George ... Mary Coombs
Adam Roarke ... Deke Sommers
Kenneth Tobey ... Carl Donahue
Eugene Daniels ... Hanks
Lynn Borden ... Evelyn Stanton
Janear Hines ... Millie
Elizabeth James ... Dispatcher
Adrianne Herman ... Cindy Stanton
T.J. Castronova ... Steve (as Tom Castranova)
James W. Gavin ... Helicopter Pilot (as James Gavin)
Al Rossi ... Surl
Ben Niems ... Police Chief Markey
George Westcott ... Bridge Operator
Tom O'Neill ... Farmer
Peter Fonda (of Race With The Devil and Easy Rider) plays a race car driver named Larry who has seen better days. His career isn't what it used to be and maybe it's time he started looking at other options to pay the bills from here on out. Larry and his buddy/mechanic Deke (Adam Rourke of The Stuntman) decide that the best way to get rich quick and move on to greener pastures is to rob a grocery store and out run the police through California to financial freedom in Mexico! Unfortunately, Larry decides to sleep with a woman named Mary (Susan George of Straw Dogs and Enter The Ninja) the night before the robbery is to go off, and she decides for the two boys that she's going to be coming along on their adventure.
When the time comes for the old snatch and grab, the three of them pull of the plan reasonably easy, robbing the store (managed by Roddy McDowell of Planet Of The Apes!) by holding his family at gun point until he hands over the goods. They hit the road in their Dodge Charger, putting the pedal to the floor and gunning it south. What they don't take into account is that the cops who gives them chase, lead by Everett Franklin (Vic Morrow of Humanoids From The Deep), while use every trick in the book to stop them cold. Dirty Mary and Crazy Larry are going to have to drive fast and furiously through the back roads of Southern California to make it out, and they're also going to have to learn to survive life with one another along the way.
The car chases. Made in the days before CGI ruined big screen stunt driving, Dirty Mary, Crazy Larry is chock full of fantastic chase scenes and car stunts that are sure to appease anyone into muscle cars and what they can do. Not only that, but the film also features a lot of great footage of the terrain where the entire thing goes down and plenty of action throughout. Yeah, Peter Fonda kind of sleep walks through it all and Susan George isn't any better than 'just okay' in her role but the sheer volume of high speed chases and jumps and stunts more than make up for it. The pacing is tight, the cinematography is handled very well, and there's a gratuitous 'Vic Morrow as the heavy' factor that can't be disputed.
It wouldn't be tough to argue that the film is hung on a very skeletal plot, but there's enough car chase action, explosions, and fantastic stunt work to make it easy to overlook the fact that we've seen this all before. None of this is original, none of this is high art, but all of this is entertaining. Turn off your brain and enjoy this one. It sure beats the pants of more modern fare like The Fast And The Furious or Italian Connection remakes.
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