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First Generation Monte Carlos in the Movies

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Life on Mars (2008)

Life on Mars is an American television series aired by ABC and co-produced by 20th Century Fox Television and ABC Studios, about a New York City homicide detective who suddenly finds himself inexplicably transported from 2008 to 1973. The series was adapted from the British series of the same name shown by the BBC. The series debuted October 9, 2008 on ABC. It will also air on Global in Canada.

Several Montes are on the show and the hero drives a sweet Chevelle.


ESPN: Ultimate NASCAR (2006)

1972 Chevrolet Monte Carlo. Driver Bobby Allison won 10 Nascar races with this car in 1972.It was owned and prepared by another racing driver, Junior Johnson. As Chevrolet was reluctant to officially sponsor cars of their make in those events contrary to Ford and Chrysler other primary sponsors had to be found, here Coca Cola on this red and gold car.


Highway (2002)

The story of two 20-year-olds who make a trek from Las Vegas to Seattle to stand vigil at the 1994 funeral of rocker Kurt Cobain, frontman of the group Nirvana. A 1972 Monte is in the movie.


The Fast & the Furious: Tokyo Drift (2006)

When Dennis McCarthy hit the ignition on The Fast & the Furious: Tokyo Drift's 1971 Chevrolet Monte Carlo, it was as if the whole world stopped for a moment in anticipation. As the starter spun, no one dared breathe, it seemed, for fear that the Holley carburetor atop the Bill Mitchell "World Class" 509-cubic-inch big-block V8 would suck in the entire atmosphere in one mighty gulp. Then the engine exploded to life: A big-block with a big cam sounds like tectonic plates colliding.

Most of Tokyo Drift's action takes place in, naturally, Tokyo, but the story is framed as the consequences of the hero's stateside street racing. The primered, NASCAR-inspired Monte Carlo is what gets him in trouble. Two of the nine first-generation Monte Carlos built for The Fast & the Furious: Tokyo Drift had big-blocks this one with the 560-horsepower 509 aboard and the other with a 700-hp, 572-cubic-inch Bill Mitchell "Hardcore" crate engine (the other seven either had small-block V8s or were used as engine-less bucks). In both Chevrolet cars, the engines feed Hooker headers and Flowmaster mufflers and, for story purposes, are disguised with "Hardcore 632" valve covers. Both run Richmond T-10 four-speed manual transmissions, Wenco driveshafts and Moser-built 12-bolt rear-ends running 4.88:1 gears in a spool differential. Both also ride on a chassis wearing Global West front control arms and coil springs, KYB shocks, Speedway Engineering anti-sway bars, Global West weight jack plates and quick-ratio steering boxes.

Wilwood disc brakes sit behind each of the Cragar 397 steel 15-inch wheels. The tires are Goodyear stock-car specials, 27 inches tall and 8 inches wide in front and 27-by-10 inches in the back. The stark interiors consist of sheet metal fabricated in the Tokyo Drift shop, custom-built roll cages, Grant steering wheels and massive Hurst V-Gate shifters. Auto Meter gauges bolted to sheet metal replace the stock gauges and the seats are Beard low-back buckets.

Everything about the Tokyo Drift Monte Carlo demands muscle to operate and steely courage to remain composed. The 509 Monte ripped to 60 mph in only 4.4 seconds and devastated the quarter-mile in 12 seconds at 118.3 mph. That's despite tires built for circle-track racing rather than straight-line acceleration, and a distinct lack of traction that had the car squirming all the way down the course. That's quick by any measure, and it's hard to imagine any car accelerating with more drama.

Not many movie cars are true bad asses. The Tokyo Drift Monte Carlo is.


Ace Ventura: Pet Detective (1994)

In Ace Ventura: Pet Detective, Jim Carey drives a beat up blue 72 Monte Carlo. In fact, it gets beat up pretty badly through the course of the movie. I remember a part where Carey says "It's a high performance machine, I have to put Super Premium in her!" Then a big ugly guy busts out the front window. Jim then has to stick his head out the window like a dog because he can't see out of the front due to all of the cracks in the glass. It's also hilarious how he drives the car. It's also funny when he opens up the ashtray and there's dog food in there. Go rent it now! It's hilarious!


2 Fast 2 Furious (2003)

The general plot consists of an officer who was stripped of his badge after a sting operation went sour and has a chance to redeem himself. The Miami authorities recruit him to work under cover and bring down the leader of a street-racing circuit. A first generation Monte Carlo make an appearance when Tyrese drives a Monte in the crash derby. There is another Monte Carlo with the number 19 on the side when there is a fight next to Tyrese's motor-home at the derby.


The Jerk (1979)

The Jerk was a movie from around 1979 that starred Steve Martin at the peak of his hilarious stupidity. The movie is about a white man, Navin R. Johnson, that grew up in a black family. On Navin's 18th birthday his black mother broke the sad news to Navin that he is not their natural born child. Navin said, "You mean I'm going to stay this color?!?" Anyway, when Navin decided to leave his home for adventure, he set out on a long journey that brought him from his poor family to being a wealthy inventor then back to being poor again. Here is where the Monte Carlo comes into this:

When Navin is working at a small service station, a Medium Blue 1971 Monte Carlo pulls up to the pump. The car has 4 Mexican guys in there and they try to pay with a stolen credit card. Navin calls the police. When Navin senses that the Mexicans were getting suspicious of what he was doing, he told them that they "won a free oven mitt" to keep them from driving off. Then Navin starts to chain the car up to a nearby churches water spigot so they will surely not be able to get away with the stolen card. However the Mexican guys start up the Monte Carlo and commence in pulling a part of the church off of the rest of the church and going down the road towing a "small church".

There are several interesting things about this Monte Carlo. First of all, any Monte Carlo enthusiast would notice the front headlights, which look like a 1977 Monte Carlo "stacked" dual headlights. I don't know how they did this or why, but it looks rather interesting. Also the car has hydrolics and when they pull up to the pump, they "hit tha switches". Navin then tells them, "Hey, I can fix those shocks!".


Smokey and the Bandit (1977)

In this Movie, from around 1978, starred Burt Reynolds who is a big "show-off" in his black '77 Trans Am. There is a small shot of another blue 1971 Monte Carlo in this flick, although not in the spendor that the Monte Carlo deserves. The car wrecked into some other car who was trying to get out of the way of the "bandit" who was being chased by the cops. It was only a two second shot but it was recognizable to a Monte Carlo fan.


The Crow (1994)

A man brutally murdered comes back to life as an undead avenger of his and his wife's murder. (1994)


The Girl In The Empty Grave (1977)

"The Girl In The Empty Grave" starred Andy Griffith. When a husband and wife are discovered dead, a small town police chief begins an intensive investigation, including an attempt to verify sightings of the couple's deceased daughter. It was filmed in 1977 and the girl in question drove a silver 1970 Monte with the early halo top. You only get to see it in the beginning and end of the movie.



Boulevard Nights (1979)

1972 Monte Carlo Lowrider. A focus on life in a gang, Boulevard Nights portrays the dangers of street violence. Richard Yniguez plays a young Chicano who tries to get out of the gang, but he keeps finding himself drawn back into it.



Straight Time (1978)

Dustin Hoffman stars in this dark drama about an ex-convict's return to a life of crime after a six-year stint at the state penitentiary. Max Dembo's troubles begin when, upon release from prison, he moves into an LA hotel instead of a halfway house. This puts him into hot water with his parole officer. A 1972 Monte Carlo is shown in a 30 second sequence during the movie


Bottle Rocket(1996)

The film centers on a group of aimless young men from a wealthy Texas community.


A Man Apart (2003)

Sean Vetter and Demetrius Hicks are members of the DEA who are fighting an ongoing drug war on the California/Mexico border, they are most successful at it because of their edge of growing up on the street and being thugs converted to cops. The DEA busts one of the major players by the name of "Memo" Lucero and imprison him in the United States but then a major player named Diablo then takes over the business and now he is now the major player targeted by Vetter and his team. But when Vetter's wife is killed in a botched hit organized by Diablo, he seeks revenge against those responsible and in the process has to seek help from the imprisoned Lucero in order to catch Diablo. But in the process, Vetter and Hicks have to fight their way up the chain to get to Diablo but it's easier said than done when all Vetter can focus on is revenge.


What's Up, Doc (1972)

Classic screwball comedy, directed by Peter Bogdanovich and starring Barbra Streisand, Ryan O'Neal, and Madeline Kahn (in her first full-length film role). A then-almost-new 1970 Monte appears in a scene.


Revenge on the Highway (1992)

At his wedding Claude Sams has an argument with his son about his life-style; in anger Paul leaves. Together with a friend he s ets out for Vegas to search a job. While changing a tire on the highway, he's killed by a passing truck. The police believes it's been an accident, but Claude doesn't accept this and frantically searches for a yellow truck and it's crazy driver at all truck stations.


Ghetto Blaster (1989)

Street gangs have turned a peaceful community into a war zone and the cops say they're powerless to stop the assault. One man steps forward to put an end to the insanity. A 1970 Monte can be seen in the movie.


American Gangster (2007)

A film directed by Ridley Scott and starring Denzel Washington and Russell Crowe. Washington portrays Frank Lucas, a real-life drug-lord from Harlem who smuggled heroin into the United States on American service planes returning from the Vietnam War. Crowe portrays Richie Roberts, a detective attempting to bring down Lucas' drug empire. Filming was done on location in New York City.


Email us if you know other monte movie appearances!

 

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