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:: Two-Lane Blacktop

Two-Lane Blacktop is that all-too-rare wonder: a cult film that actually deserves its legendary status. The plot is thrillingly meagre. James Taylor plays the Driver. The late Dennis Wilson (the wildest of the Beach Boys) plays the Mechanic. Together they drive east in a souped-up 1955 Chevrolet, challenging other cars for money as they traverse the desolate landscapes of the American Southwest. Along the way, they pick up a hitchhiker (Laurie Bird) and encounter the late Warren Oates, who drives a 1970 Pontiac GTO and reinvents his past every time he opens his mouth. The two cars engage in a cross-country race culminating in a uniquely ambiguous finish.

Two-Lane Blacktop was largely ignored in its day. Though it was never released on video (because Universal didn't want to spend money on securing the music rights), it turned up on television every now and again but remained essentially unseen for a generation. Needless to say, it became a cult classic.

A philosophical film about gearheads, Two-Lane Blacktop clearly owes a debt to Easy Rider, whose enormous commercial success in 1969 caused Hollywood's interest in road movies. Two-Lane Blacktop remains mysterious and compelling, thanks to its sparse dialogue and enigmatic characters.

Two-Lane Blacktop is directed by cult legend Monte Hellman (director of The Shooting and Cockfighter and Executive Producer of Reservoir Dogs) from a screenplay by Rudolph Wurlitzer (Pat Garrett & Billy The Kid. It is very good filmmaking at a bleak time in America. The 1960s were seemingly long gone and young people had nothing to look foward to and the film is a perfect picture of this time.

Although shot on a low budget this looks great in widescreen. so if your a fan of cult movies/movies of the 1970s, this is well worth a look.

DVD Extras

- Audio commentary by Director Monte Hellman and Associate Producer Gary Hurtz
- You Can Never Go Fast Enough - Two-Lane Blacktop Revisited
- Documentary - Monte Hellman: American auteur"
- Film writer Jack Sargeant discusses the road movie
- Theatrical trailer
- Umbrella trailers