So, it’s date night once again and you are running out of unique things you can do together. You’ve already done the whole romantic night out, complete with candlelit dinner and slow dancing. You’ve also already gone on a date at the mini-golf course. And now, you just want to do something completely new and enjoyable.
Well, if you ask us, we would definitely suggest a movie night. And not just any movie night, we would go on and insist that you and your date go out for a car movie night. After all, you need something that’s got tons of action, laughs, and perhaps, even a love story unfolding amidst all the fun.
As far as anyone can remember, car movies have been taking to the big screen at full speed. They have been produced across several countries. And more importantly, they have starred some of the most successful actors in Hollywood. These include the likes of Burt Reynolds, Sylvester Stallone, Audrey Hepburn, Susan Sarandon, Donald Sutherland, Angelina Jolie, Geena Davis, Jason Statham, Mark Wahlberg, Charlize Theron, Dwayne Johnson, and many more. At the same time, these car movies have also featured some of the most iconic cars in film history. These include a Volkswagen Beetle, a Ferrari 250GT California, a Ford Mustang, and many others.
With a car movie, there is certainly a lot to see and enjoy. This is precisely why we’re sure that your date would not mind checking them out with you. And in case you’re not sure which car movie to show on date night, we have listed 25 that you can choose from.
25 Two-Lane Blacktop
Two-Lane Blacktop is an exciting movie about a cross-country race that becomes a little complicated when a love triangle also ensues. This 1971 road movie also happens to have some notable stars: singer-songwriter James Taylor and the Beach Boys’ very own Dennis Wilson. According to the website Criterion, this was the only time that the two ever acted on film. In the movie, Wilson’s character is a mechanic while Taylor plays a driver. Together, they worked to maintain a 1955 Chevy. And sometime during a drive, they encounter a girl who is interested in both men.
24 Need for Speed
If you and your date are looking for something a little more exciting, then Need for Speed is definitely the movie that you need to watch together. As the movie’s name suggests, this one is full of high-octane action. Set in an underground racing circuit, the film stars Aaron Paul as Tobey Marshall, a mechanic who reluctantly partners with ex-NASCAR driver Dino Brewster (played by Dominic Cooper) in order to save his business. In the end, though, Brewster ends up framing Marshall for manslaughter. Soon after, Marshall joins an intense cross-country race with revenge in mind.
23 Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby
If you are looking for a movie that’s full of comical fun and racing action, then Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby is absolutely the movie for you and your date. Released back in 2006, this movie stars the always funny Will Ferrell as NASCAR driver Ricky Bobby, who enjoyed being the sport’s top driver until he wasn’t. Meanwhile, Sacha Baron Cohen plays Jean Girard, a French racecar driver who becomes Ferrell’s top rival. Watch this movie and without a doubt, you’re going to have a good time.
22 Mercedes, Mon Amour
There’s a good chance that you haven’t heard of Mercedes, Mon Amour and that’s fine. Written and directed by Turkish filmmaker Tunç Okan, the film stars Iylas Salman. According to TimeOut, Salman plays Bayram, a Munich street cleaner who manages to achieve his dreaming of buying a yellow Mercedes-Benz 350SE. With a car like this, Bayram couldn’t wait to show it off back home. The problem is, getting it there proves to be quite a challenge. As explained by the website, “Turkey seems like bad car trouble: there's more crashed vehicles here than in Godard's French weekend.”
21 Thelma & Louise
Now, every movie and car movie lover would definitely know about Thelma & Louise. After all, this film is a classic, which is precisely why it should be on anyone’s list of date night car movies. As you may know, Thelma & Louise stars two of Hollywood’s most enduring actresses: Susan Sarandon and Geena Davis. In the movie, the two women play the titular characters, who end up on a run from the law after an incident ensues during a road trip. Directed by Ridley Scott, the film was hailed a remarkable success from the very beginning.
20 Mad Max: Fury Road
If you are looking for a date night car movie that’s got a lot more suspense, action, and excitement, then you may want to consider Mad Max: Fury Road. The film stars Oscar winner Charlize Theron as Imperator Furiosa and actor Tom Hardy as the titular character, Mad Max. According to Warner Bros., “They are escaping a Citadel tyrannized by the Immortan Joe, from whom something irreplaceable has been taken. Enraged, the Warlord marshals all his gangs and pursues the rebels ruthlessly in the high-octane Road War that follows.”
19 The Driver
“The Driver” is a 1978 car movie that is perfect if you and your date are looking for a really good thriller. Directed by Walter Hill, the movie stars Ryan O’ Neal and Bruce Dern as the driver and the detective, respectively. According to one fan’s post on IMDB, “ 'The Driver' is a specialist in a rare business: he drives getaway cars in robberies. His exceptional talent prevented him from being caught yet. After another successful flight from the police, a self-assured detective makes it his primary goal to catch the Driver.”
18 The Love Bug
If you are looking for a car movie that is a little more lighthearted for date night, then The Love Bug may just be perfect for you. Released back in 1968, The Love Bug stars Dean Jones, Michele Lee, and David Tomlinson. And as you may know, it also stars a Volkswagen Beetle who seems to have a mind of its own. Catch some racing excitement and comical stunts in this movie and if you can’t get enough, just hit replay and have a good time all over again.
17 Herbie Goes to Monte Carlo
If you and your date really can’t get enough of The Love Bug, perhaps you may want to check out the movie’s follow-up, Herbie Goes to Monte Carlo. This is a movie that’s highly recommended if you’re looking for one that is exciting but not intense. According to Disney, “In a Paris-to-Monte Carlo race, Herbie falls in love, but jewel thieves begin a mad chase for the stolen gems hidden in his gas tank!” As you can see, Herbie’s great adventure continues indeed.
16 Two for the Road
One romantic comedy that’s perfect for date night is the car movie Two for the Road. Directed by Stanley Donen, the film stars the incomparable Audrey Hepburn and Albert Finney. Together, they play a couple whose relationship unravels throughout the story. And while this happens, the couple embarks on a series of road trips as they try to salvage their marriage. Furthermore, according to Rotten Tomatoes, “Audiences responded to the chemistry between Audrey Hepburn and Albert Finney, not to mention the unforgettable musical score by Henry Mancini.”
15 Smokey and the Bandit
As many car and movie fans may tell you, Smokey and the Bandit is a true classic. After all, this 1977 film stars no less than the legendary Burt Reynolds, along with Sally Field and Jackie Gleason. In the movie, the bandit (Reynolds) is a trucker determined to deliver 400 cases of beer from Texarkana to Atlanta in just 28 hours. Problem is, there’s a sheriff that’s hot on his trail. And so, a wild chase ensues. Smokey and the Bandit was the second highest-grossing movie in 1977, directly behind Star Wars, according to a report from Mental Floss.
14 Ferris Bueller's Day Off
If you and your date are looking for a car movie that’s also funny and set in high school, then look no further than Ferris Bueller's Day Off. This 1986 movie stars Matthew Broderick, Jeffrey Jones, Mia Sara, and Alan Ruck. In the film, Broderick plays the role of the titular character, Ferris Bueller, a high school student who is pretty skilled at cutting classes. Just before graduation, Ferris decides to “borrow” a Ferrari and drive it throughout Chicago. Mayhem ensues when the school principal tries to catch him in the act.
Without a doubt, Driven has gone on to become a true car movie classic even though it was only released back in 2001. For starters, the film features a star-studded cast, including Sylvester Stallone, Burt Reynolds, and Kip Pardue. Moreover, the film also features an appearance by former racing driver Chip Ganassi who is also behind the successful Chip Ganassi Racing team. This film may not have garnered critical success, but it’s still a definite must-see for anyone who enjoys auto racing.
If you and your date are especially in love with the Ford Mustang, then Bullitt is definitely the perfect date night movie for you. Bullitt stars Steve McQueen as the titular character, Frank Bullitt, a San Francisco police lieutenant who is tasked to protect a Chicago mobster who is about to uncover incriminating evidence at a hearing. One of the most unforgettable scenes in this movie is a car chase involving McQueen in a Ford Mustang 390 GT and a Dodge Charger R/T 400. As many critics will tell you, this chase remains iconic to this day.
We know it’s an animated film, but so what? Cars is, inarguably, a car movie classic. After all, it’s lead character is a red-hot car by the name of Lightning McQueen. Moreover, Lightning’s story is something that anyone trying to make it the racing world can relate to. One minute, you’re famous and you’re winning races, and the next, you’ve been forgotten because there’s a new race car in the circuit. Enjoy it on date night and if you can’t get enough, you can always watch its follow up movies.
10 Speed Racer
Having only been released back in 2008, you can say that the film Speed Racer is fairly recent when compared to others. The film stars John Goodman, Susan Sarandon, Emile Hirsch, Christina Ricci, and Matthew Fox. Speed Racer said to be based on a 1960s Japanese manga and anime series of the same name. If you and your date are looking for a movie that easily goes from animation to live action, then this is definitely a movie to check out.
Another great date night car movie that is also quite intense is the 2011 movie Drive. This film stars Ryan Gosling along with Carey Mulligan, Christina Hendricks, Bryan Cranston, and Oscar Isaac. Here Gosling stars as a Los Angeles driver-stuntman who works on armed heists by night. At some point, he falls in love with his neighbor and this soon brings him trouble. According to Rotten Tomatoes, the movie received an R rating for “strong brutal bloody violence, language, and some nudity.”
8 Gone in 60 Seconds (Remake)
Who can resist a movie remake that stars Nicholas Cage and Angelina Jolie? Well, certainly not us. And we are guessing that your date would like to see Gone in 60 Seconds, too. Gone in 60 Seconds is a film involving the story of Randall “Memphis” Raines (Cage), a car thief who is forced to steal as many as 50 luxury vehicles in a single night. The theft was necessary in order to save his brother’s life. And to make sure he can pull it off, Memphis needs to reassemble his old crew.
7 The Transporter
Before he even joined the Fast & Furious franchise, actor Jason Statham was already pretty famous for his very own series movies. In fact, for years, he has starred in The Transporter franchise. In the films, Statham plays Frank, a man who is always hired to “transport” packages for his very secretive and questionable clients. If you haven’t yet, watch The Transporter with your date. And in case you want more high-octane action afterward, go ahead and watch Transporter 2 and Transporter 3.
6 The Fast and the Furious
As you might know, this list of car movies to watch on a date would not be complete without The Fast and the Furious. After all, this is a car movie that ended up launching an unstoppable franchise. Not to mention, it is also the movie that features the unbeatable tandem of actors Vin Diesel and the late Paul Walker. The Fast and the Furious introduces the colliding worlds of underground street racer Dominic Toretto (Diesel) and undercover police officer Brian O’Conner (Walker). And it's only the beginning, as their adventures continue in the succeeding Fast and Furious movies.
5 The Fate of the Furious
In the Fate of the Furious Paul Walker’s character, O’Conner, is said to have “retired” following the actor’s tragic demise. Nonetheless, the adventure for Dom and his team continues. In this film, they are up against Charlize Theron’s Cipher who manages to flip Dom against his own family. Aside from Vin Diesel and Theron, other notables stars in the cast include Jason Statham, Dwayne Johnson, Tyrese Gibson, Ludacris, Michelle Rodriguez, Elsa Pataky, and Kurt Russell. If you and your date plan to check out the Fast and Furious franchise, there is no way that you can miss this.
4 The Italian Job
For us, another great date night car movie would be The Italian Job. It’s definitely got some amazing car action featuring several Mini Coopers. But at the same time, it’s also got a romantic side and a story about the importance of family. In The Italian Job remake, Mark Wahlberg stars as Charlie Croker, who is determined to avenge the death of his mentor after a heist that goes sideways. To make this possible, he enlists the help of his mentor’s daughter, played by Charlize Theron.
3 C'était un Rendezvous
No list of date night car movies would be complete without the classic short film C'était un Rendezvous. The film was directed by the great Claude Lelouche. The premise behind the short is simple. A man gets behind the wheel of a pretty fast car to get to a date. And so, off he went. Throughout his fantastic drive around Paris, you hear the distinctive roar of a Ferrari 275GTB's V12 engine. According to a report from a Jalopnik, the Ferrari sound was just edited in. In the film, the car being driven around was a Mercedes-Benz 450SEL 6.9.
2 Dirty Mary Crazy Larry
For a lot of movie and car fans, the 1974 film Dirty Mary Crazy Larry can be quite enjoyable. After all, it's about a car chase, a heist, and a stowaway girlfriend. Starring Peter Fonda, Susan George, and Adam Roarke, the movie featured several impressive stunt scenes and a whole lot of action. Moreover, fans were also eager to see Roddy McDowall in his uncredited role. According to a report from Rotten Tomatoes, the movie went on to make as much as $30 million during its first release.
1 Corvette Summer
Corvette Summer is the perfect date night movie for when you are looking for something cute and funny. Released back in 1978, the film stars a young Mark Hamill and Annie Potts. In the story, the two actors end up working together to find a stolen Corvette that Hamill's character had been working on. According to Rotten Tomatoes, the movie was well received by film critics. Despite this, however, it still did poorly at the box office. Nonetheless, we think Corvette Summer is perfect for date night.
Sources: Jalopnik, Rotten Tomatoes, Criterion, and Mental Floss.