Quick, what do H. B. Halicki and Louis B. Mayer have in common? They both went "from junk cars to movie stars" as the poster for The Junkman put it; both were scrap merchants who got into the film business. Wrecking shop owner turned auteur Halicki's homebrewed hit Gone in 60 Seconds led the 1999 remake by Dominic Sena, who reputedly worked on the original The Junkman as a camera man. The Junkman, the follow-up to the original 1974 Gone in 60 Seconds, is an even more extravagant car-cruncher. It's a film that makes Tarantino's great car chase in Death Proof look like an also-ran. (QT refers to this original by having Kurt Russell's character keep a row of sunglasses on his dashboard, just like Halicki did.) The Junkman is an all-out demolition derby with Hoyt Axton providing the vocals, a co-starring role by a pet pig named Farah and a finale with the Goodyear Blimp buzzing the Cinerama Dome. As the price of a gallon of gas reaches the inevitable $5 mark, let us return to this uniquely decadent actioner.
categories Features, Cinematical