We’ve all seen them. Maybe we didn’t notice them at the time, but we remember them afterwards. Famous tires in movies are sometimes as memorable as the actors driving the cars. We all can picture the shot in “Grease” of John Travolta racing at Thunder Road and then, there it is: the tire of Greased Lightning. Not to mention the shot of the tire of the Scorpion driver’s car as the blade on its hubcap slices through Danny Zuko’s passenger door. Famous tires in movies add more personality to an otherwise inanimate role. Every time people see famous tires in movies like these, they are immediately transported back to the first time they saw that image.
Ferris Bueller’s Day Off
Ferris Bueller, a slacking high school student, decides to play hooky from school in one of the most epic ways imaginable in U.S. cinema. When he convinces Cameron, his timid but good friend, to take his father’s prized 1961 Ferrari 250 GT Spyder, the day becomes an adventure. That is, until they realize they need to roll back the odometer so his father doesn’t find out it was driven without his permission. Audiences over the world felt Cameron’s heart break as he kicked the car, making it race backwards and crash out the window. That shot of the Ferrari’s tires is what people may remember most about “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off.”
Back to the Future
Some people argue that the star of the “Back to the Future” movies wasn’t Michael J. Fox but, instead was the 1981 DeLorean DMC 12, better known as the time machine. Modified with a flux capacitor, the DMC 12 was capable of time-travel when it reached exactly 88 miles per hour, and when it reached its destination, we cheered as we saw the skid marks of its tires. In two sequels, we watched these famous tires in movies that took us far into the future and back to the Old West, and we still were thrilled every time we see those skid marks.
When Michael Keaton as Batman stood in the middle of the street and said, “Stop” to his voice-command Batmobile, movie goers were amazed, along with co-star Kim Basinger, as the tires stopped on a dime. One of the coolest movie cars of all time, the Batmobile also has famous tires in movies that spanned the last 20 years. It boasted after-burners and weaponry that few other movie cars aspired to have. Driven by Batman actors like Michael Keaton, George Clooney and Christian Bale, it became one of the most iconic movie cars ever.
Most people think cars in the movies are cool, and they take the characters where they need to go. But to some tire enthusiast, tires in cult-classic movies are more memorable than the characters themselves.
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