Deadly Cars: The Automobile in Horror Cinema
There is a never ending list of things that give people the chills. These fears can be perfectly legitimate; like the fear of heights. Others have fears that most people simply scoff at; like chlorophobia, also known as the fear of green things. Horror movies have given people objects to fear that they would’ve most likely never seen in their lives. Honestly, who was afraid of a man wearing other people’s skin before the ‘Texas Chainsaw Massacre’? Though it may seem silly, some movies have even granted creepy status to certain automobiles. These are cars that will live in infamy simply because they were used in film.
Semi Truck from ‘Joy Ride’
Who would’ve ever thought that messing around with a CB radio could lead to such a hellacious experience? When two brothers and one of their potential love interests decide to play a prank on unsuspecting truckers, they obviously get far more than they hoped for. The trio begins a panicked trip to get as far away as possible when they overhear a murder being committed by the trucker that they tricked. This leads to a continuously suspense filled atmosphere. Semi trucks are obviously scary enough without having ‘Rusty Nail’ behind the driver’s seat.
’58 Plymouth Fury in ‘Christine’
Only Stephen King could create a car that haunts people’s nightmares thirty years after its film debut. The car is appropriately colored bright red, because wherever the car goes, hell follows with it. The young boy who is restoring the car to its full beauty starts to experience a noticeable change in behavior that can only be considered a step into the dark side. When the car seems to become jealous of its owner’s girlfriend, it isn’t a good day to be dating the nerdy kid with the ’58 Plymouth.
1973 Delta Olds 88 in the ‘Evil Dead Trilogy’
Not every memorable vehicle in horror movies has to convey pure evil. Ash’s Delta Olds 88 has the distinct privilege of driving the movie’s protagonist to a fate far worse than death. This vehicle is recognizable for anyone even remotely interested in B-movie actor Bruce Campbell due to the fact that it appeared in all three ‘Evil Dead’ movies and a few other films Campbell starred in. There’s only one thing a person can call a car that survives three movies full of constant onslaught by the forces of darkness, and it isn’t appropriate for mixed audiences.
Shuttle Bus from ‘Dawn of the Dead’
The shuttle bus from ‘Dawn of the Dead’ should’ve struck fear into its victims, but this is highly unlikely considering the fact that its ‘victims’ were mindless zombies set on devouring human flesh. The small group of survivors trapped in the local mall suddenly became automotive engineers who could create the most intimidating and destructive vehicles in existence when it came time to escape, and they could do this with shuttle buses.
Not many people will forget wondering why the teenage girl was taking the time to paint teeth on the front wedge of the bus while endless hordes of the undead were quickly approaching, but it definitely gave the vehicle a bit more ‘bite’. This is actually ironic considering a ‘bite’ was the downfall of most of the characters.
1941 Chevy COE from ‘Jeepers Creepers’
This vehicle looked scary before the movie ‘Jeepers Creepers’ ever came out, but anyone who sees one now on a long country road will likely need a bathroom break to change their underwear soon. The Chevy COE transports one of the most horrifyingly indestructible monsters to ever grace the silver screen, and it also doubles as a handy body transporter. The young man in the movie’s brother/sister duo couldn’t even speak after witnessing the horror that the Chevy assisted in, and there isn’t a person in the world who would blame him for it.
Ecto-1 from ‘Ghostbusters’
The Ecto-1 featured in Ghostbusters was actually based on a 1959 Cadillac. The style of the car is unlike anything ever seen before, a kind of mix between a hearse and an ambulance, if you can believe it.
One of the Ghostbusters team members, Ray, had a past job as a mechanic, so he was able to soup it up to be a street machine worthy of fighting off ghouls. Among the modifications are increased suspension, new transmission and shock absorbers, this set the car up to do the wheel-spinning stunts you can see in both Ghostbusters and it’s sequel.
Since the long-awaited third Ghostbusters film should be coming out next year, does this mean we’ll see an appearance of Ecto-1 once again? We can only hope so, perhaps this time it will have even more modifications (let’s just hope Slimer doesn’t get behind the wheel).
This guest post has come from the car expert down at Are You Selling, an experienced car valuations website for Australians.