Top 10 Best Car Racing Movies of All Time

It’s no doubt that fast moving cars can give you an adrenaline Rush. Such exhilaration is good for you so be sure not to miss the Top 10 Best Car Racing Movies of All Time:


#10 – Speedway (1968)

Speedway (1968)

Starring: Elvis Presley, Nancy Sinatra, Bill Bixby

Directed by: Norman Taurog

In this flick, Elvis Presley is a racecar driver. He is being pursued by the attractive Nancy Sinatra who plays an IRS inspector. This is the last musical film of Elvis Presley (His following films are less musical and more adult.).

However, Elvis Presley is not only the big name in this film, several NASCAR drivers also made cameos in this film including Buddy Baker, Cale Yarborough, Richard Petty, and Tiny Lund.


#9 – Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby (2006)

Starring: Will Ferrell, John C. Reilly, Sacha Baron Cohen

Directed by: Adam McKay

This is a comedy about a NASCAR driver who wants to go fast.

Like Speedway, this movie also shows real people NASCAR doing cameos, including: NASCAR drivers, Dale Earnhardt, Jr. and Jamie McMurray; broadcasting members on Fox and NBC, Benny Parsons, Bill Weber,Darrell Waltrip, Larry McReynolds, Mike Joy, and Wally Dallenbach, Jr.


#8 – Fast Five (2011)

Starring: Vin Diesel, Paul Walker, Jordana Brewster

Directed by: Justin Lin


This #8 entry to the Top 10 Best Car Racing Movies of All Time is alternatively known as “Fast & the Furious 5: Rio Heist”. It is the 7th highest-grossing movie in 2011 and won 3 awards including Choice Movie – Action at the 2011 Teen Choice Awards.


#7 – The Fast and the Furious (2001)

Starring: Paul Walker, Vin Diesel, Michelle Rodriguez, Jordana Brewster

Directed by: Rob Cohen

Although garnering mixed reviews, this film is the first of the Fast and the Furious movie series. This 2001 movie was inspired by an article about street car racing in NY City published on Vibe magazine.


#6 – Two-Lane Blacktop (1971)

Two-Lane Blacktop (1971)

Starring: James Taylor, Warren Oates, Laurie Bird, Dennis Wilson

Directed by: Monte Hellman

The #6 entry to the Top 10 Best Car Racing Movies of All Time is made popular by the Beach Boys percussionist, Dennis Wilson, and a singer, James Taylor. This film is about 2 young men drag racing on the famous Route 66 in the American Southwest.


#5 – The Last American Hero (1973)

Starring: Jeff Bridges, Valerie Perrine

Directed by: Lamont Johnson,

This movie is a fictionalized rendition of Junior Johnson’s life. Junior started out as a moonshiner and ended up as a NASCAR champion.

The movie was inspired by an article of the same title written by Tom Wolfe and published on Esquire Magazine.


#4 – Winning (1969)

Winning (1969)

Starring: Paul Newman, Joanne Woodward

Directed by: James Goldstone

This movie features almost all the types of racing in the late 1960s: from Indy cars to NASCAR and those in between. Not only that, it inspired its cast to race professionally. For example, Paul Newman never raced his entire life until this movie. When the movie was over he started racing for real and spent as much time doing that as acting.


#3 – Days of Thunder (1990)

Starring: Tom Cruise, Robert Duvall, Nicole Kidman, Randy Quaid

Directing: Tony Scott

This is the film where Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman met. Yes, there is that sentimental love story. However, ignoring that part, this racing in this movie is quite good.

The movie also shows several NASCAR racers, commentators, and a producer, including: Harry Gant, Don Simpson, Dr. Jerry Punch, Neil Bonnett, and Rusty Wallace.


#2 – Grand Prix (1966)

Starring: James Garner, Eva Marie Saint, Yves Montand

Directed by: John Frankenheimer

A love triangle amidst racing adrenaline rush. It includes true racing videos and cameos by Formula One World Champions including Graham Hill, Jack Brabham, Jim Clark, Jochen Rindt, Juan Manuel Fangio, and Phil Hill.

It is one of the 10 highest earning 1966 films and won 3 Academy Awards for Best Film Editing, Best Sound, and Best Sound Effects.


#1 – Le Mans (1971)

Le Mans (1971)

Starring: Steve McQueen

Directed by: Lee H. Katzin

The last but definitely not the least is the #1 entry for the Top 10 Best Car Racing Movies of All Time: Le Mans! Although the story is nothing to be proud of, the racing sequences are awesome! This film is directed by Lee H. Katzin, however, it is said that Steve McQueen threatened and intimidated Lee to get what he wanted in every racing shot. The results: breathtaking racing scenes to be proud of!

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