Smokey and the Bandit

Snowman: "Can I ask you a question?"
Bandit: "Sure, ask me."
Snowman: "What the hell we want to go to Texas for, and haul beer back here? What is that?"
Bandit: "For the good old American life...for the money, for the glory, and for the fun. Mostly for the money."

release year: 1978
genre: car chase action/comedy
viewing setting: home Bluray 9/6/18 and home DVD, 5/18/09 and home laserdisc 4/13/98

synopsis: Gutsy but fun-loving Bandit and his trucker pal must get a truckload of bootleg beer back to Georgia in record time.

impressions: This is a good period comedy, meaning that it brings back nostalgia for the good old days when - if your car's engine was big enough and you were man enough - you could race around at 120 mph and laugh at the law. Those things will never be possible again and so this movie is a good slice of nostalgia from decades past. It's got a lot of fast-driving action but also a lot of humor, mostly thanks to Burt Reynolds and Jerry Reed and their interactions. (Unlike many people, I didn't find the redneck Texas sheriff to be very funny at all.)

something this movie has that no other movie has: a sports car that can outrun any police car

acting: This is the role that many people remember Burt Reynolds for, and with good reason, as he does a great job and is genuinely funny. Sally Field is a perky girl who he picks up and befriends, while Jackie Gleason is over-the-top as a redneck Texas sheriff. Jerry Reed plays the Bandit's good-humored trucker buddy.

final word: entertaining, but you have to like fast driving or Southern humor

back to the main review page