The Cannonball Run

June 19th, 1981


The Cannonball Run

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A wide variety of eccentric competitors participate in a wild and illegal cross-country car race.

Release Year: 1981

Rating: 5.8/10 (15,029 voted)

Director: Hal Needham

Stars: Burt Reynolds, Roger Moore, Farrah Fawcett

A wild, illegal, and popular cross-country car race is organized, and the eccentric entrants will do anything to win, including low-down, dirty tricks.

Burt Reynolds - J.J. McClure
Roger Moore - Seymour Goldfarb, Jr.
Farrah Fawcett - Pamela Glover
Dom DeLuise - Victor Prinzim / Captain Chaos
Dean Martin - Jamie Blake
Sammy Davis Jr. - Morris Fenderbaum
Jack Elam - Doctor Nikolas Van Helsing
Adrienne Barbeau - Marcie Thatcher, Lamborghini Babe #1
Terry Bradshaw - Terry
Jackie Chan - Jackie Chan, Subaru Driver
Bert Convy - Bradford Compton
Jamie Farr - The Sheik
Peter Fonda - Chief Biker
George Furth - Arthur J. Foyt
Michael Hui - Subaru Engineer

Taglines: You'll root for them all...but you'll never guess who wins.

Release Date: 19 June 1981

Filming Locations: King Harbor, Redondo Beach, California, USA

Opening Weekend: $11,765,654 (USA) (21 June 1981)

Gross: $72,179,579 (USA)

Technical Specs


Did You Know?

In one of the earlier scenes in the movie, Burt Reynolds's character says "Could get a black Trans Am", and then answers himself, "Naw, that's been done." This is a reference to Smokey and the Bandit which starred Reynolds, and was directed by Hal Needham, who directed this film. DeLuise co-starred with Reynolds in the 1980 sequel, Smokey and the Bandit II.

Audio/visual unsynchronized: When JJ and Victor are riding in the ambulance after their boating accident, the medic's lips say "Like shit through a goose", but the audio track says "Like shot through a gun" when describing how the ambulance gets through traffic.

Mad Dog: [Batman tries to beat up a biker] Hold it! You'll never last five minutes in a New York Subway
Mad Dog: [Mad Dog whacks the biker across the knee with a board and then on the back, knocking him down] Now *that?s* the way it's done!

User Review

What a pile-up....

Rating: 6/10

If you're looking for a movie loaded with cars, crashes, 1/8th of the Rat Pack, Adrienne Barbeau's best assets... oh yeah, and Burt Reynolds, look no further than "The Cannonball Run".

It was a hit back in 1981 and no wonder: Burt was on top of his game and we were all young and naive back then. Heck, I have a warm spot for all the rampant stupidity, myself.

All the better that Roger Moore plays a deft parody of his own James Bond persona, complete with an Aston Martin.

If you've seen this film way back when, no doubt you remember it with some fondness. Let's face it: it may not have been on par with films like "The Gumball Rally" or even "Death Race 2000", but in its own way and on its own terms, it works just fine.

A word of sage advice: if you watch this film, skip "Cannonball Run 2". It'll only ruin your good memories of the first. And if you didn't like the original, well....

Five stars. Plus one star extra for adding Jackie Chan for what adds up to mostly as a cameo as a karate-kicking racer. And a half star more for Adrienne Barbeau's fancy work with a jump suit zipper. Altogether, six and a half stars.

Wish she would have made it a seven.


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