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Two-Lane Blacktop (Widescreen)

James Taylor , Warren Oates , Monte Hellman    R (Restricted)   DVD
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (70 customer reviews)
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Product Description


James Taylor is The Driver, a car-obsessed racer with stringy hair and a concentration that precludes conversation. He travels the backroads of rural America with his buddy, The Mechanic (Dennis Wilson of the Beach Boys), an equally obsessed lost soul at home only in the car or under the hood. They have no names, only designations, and no life outside of their gypsy existence, riding the unending highway in their souped-up '55 Chevy from race to race. After picking up a hitchhiking Girl (Laurie Bird), whose presence breaks the tunnel-vision focus of the two men, they challenge a middle-aged hotshot, the garrulous G.T.O. (Warren Oates) to a cross-country race. Monte Hellman's Two-Lane Blacktop is the most alienated evocation of modern America ever made, an almost abstract study in dislocation and obsession set against a vague landscape of roadside diners and rest stops. Taylor and Wilson deliver appropriately blank performances, only expressing emotion when The Girl sparks jealousy between them. Oates is a glib dynamo constructing a new persona in every scene, as if trying on characters to play as he ping-pongs between the coasts. "How fast does it go?" asks The Driver, admiring G.T.O.'s car. "Fast enough," he answers. The Driver snaps, "You can never go fast enough." These are characters on the road to nowhere who can't work up enough speed to escape themselves. --Sean Axmaker

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars On the Road to Nowhere Oct. 5 2002
The 1971 film "Two-Lane Blacktop" is arguably the best of the late 60s, early 70s existential road film genre (including "Easy Rider," "Vanishing Point" and "Electra Glide in Blue"). Director Monte Hellman's stark, at times unyeilding examination of American alienation is brilliant simply because of its refusal to pander to an audience undoubtedly looking for the commercial release of an exciting car chase.
There is a race in "Two-Lane Blacktop," though it seems to end almost before it begins. There are extraordinary muscle cars as well, including a souped up '55 Chevy contrasted with a new Pontiac GTO. But Two-Lane Blacktop is a character study, even though the characters are not people we would particularly like to know.
The three main characters, haunted lost souls void of identity and emotion, are played by James Taylor, Dennis Wilson and Warren Oates. Taylor and Wilson silently cruise the backroads of America looking for the next race in their 55' Chevy. They eventually meet Oates, a chattering, nervous man involved in some kind of middle-age crisis while picking up hitchikers in his GTO. These men decide to race cross country, but eventually lose interest.
Throw into this uneasy mix a young hitchiker played by Laurie Bird. She jumps back and forth between these three men, holding off their awkward advances, eventually realizing their emotionless lives are headed down an endless highway without destination.
"Two-Lane Blacktop" is a morose study of men perpetually lost on the backroads of a nameless American landscape. They are hovering ghosts, void of identity, forever searching for a meaning which cannot be found. There are no easy truths or answers in Hellman's complex odyssey.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Review for Two-Lane Blacktop Jan. 10 2014
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
The DVD arrived on Dec. 31. It was a Christmas gift for our son who had seen it years ago and wanted a copy. I was very pleased that it arrived with a 'script' synopsis and another little book plus a disc with some dialogue and conversation, all for $37. Great price. Very pleased.
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5.0 out of 5 stars great movie Jan. 6 2013
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
I bought this as a gift for my husband. It was exactly as it was described on the web site.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
This classic road movie finally gets the the royal treatment with this DVD!!!Where else can you find James Taylor,Dennis Wilson and Warren Oates in the same movie? A true piece of seventies nostalgia!!! It's from Anchor Bay so you know you're getting quality!!! It's in its original widescreen format and it looks and sounds great!!! The extras are top notch too!!! And to top it off it comes in a cool collector's tin!!! AN AWESOME DVD!!! Five Stars!!! A+
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars two lane blacktop revisited Nov. 22 2009
this re make is done very well, the picture quality is very good. the sound is ,understandably not much better than the original, as it was shot quickly, and
the lead actors mumbling would be difficult to improve upon, . This really is about the cars and the era of aimless wandering and teenage hitchikers, so
viewed in that light it's very enjoyable, as is the added background material.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Slow, But Captivating Sept. 2 2003
By Gina M.
I finally saw this last night after having heard so much about it. Yes, "Two-Lane Blacktop" is a slow-moving film, but its essence is very soothing. Perhaps it's the quiet of the open road or the quaintness of the small-town gas stations and diners. Or maybe it's that the simplicity of the protagonists' lives points to a simpler era.
"Two-Lane Blacktop" makes me think of Jack Kerouac's "On the Road."
The acting of the two leads is stale, but their good looks make up for it. You could almost feel the Girl's wanderlust; her character is admirable for rejecting convention in search of a larger life. G.T.O. is obviously in need of pyschiatric help, but the hitchhikers he picks up are fascinating. (It's a bonus that Harry Dean Stanton is one of them.)
See "Two-Lane Blacktop" if you just want to peacefully zone out for a couple of hours.
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5.0 out of 5 stars An Increadable insperasional movie May 27 2003
Two Lane Blacktop is one of those movies that just seems to leave you in awwww it is just great for ordinary movie watcher's I could see the story laging at times but you have to understand it to appreshiate it
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5.0 out of 5 stars Literature on film! May 19 2003
By A Customer
Two-Lane Blacktop is literature on film! At first viewing, it may seem stylistic but plotless, as the casual observer without proper frame of reference will miss some subtle subplots.
The first subplot is the contrast of the genuine versus the wannabe, as revealed in the cars and their owners. There has always been a street-race rivalry between the the home-built hotrod and the checkbook-aquired factory musclecar (fellow gearheads will nod knowingly). This contrast extends to The Driver, who is earthy and real, and GTO, who is always playing a role. At first, GTO tries to stand toe-to-toe with The Driver, but he is eventually subjugated by the horsepower of the '55 and the mechanical know-how of Driver and Mechanic.
The second and more interesting subplot is the tension within The Driver, who feels more comfortable with machines than with people (perhaps machines are easier to control). Believe me, this type of personality exists - confirm with any gearhead or IT professional. His machine zen is interrupted by the hitchhiker, to whom he opens himself up (barely). The hicthhiker eventually leaves, and at the end of the movie he slides shut the window of the '55 Chevy, symbolically shutting out human emotion/interaction and returning to his mechanical world.
Watch this movie looking for these subplots, and you may have a whole new viewing experience.
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Didn't like this? Congratulations!
Two-Lane Blacktop is widely worshipped as one of the best pop-art flicks of the early 1970's Golden Age of American Cinema. Read more
Published on May 21 2004 by Kris Cheppaikode
2.0 out of 5 stars Two Lane Dead End
I watched the movie after purchasing it for a freind who is a big James Taylor music fan. I was disapointed in the character writing, as J.T. Read more
Published on Jan. 16 2004 by Jason C. Potter
Published on Jan. 12 2004 by Wes B. Blakely
1.0 out of 5 stars i love JT, but this movie sucks
James Taylor is my favorite artist of all time. I have all his albums and love every song on every one. But, there is a reason he is not a successful actor. Read more
Published on Jan. 5 2004 by Jared Correia
1.0 out of 5 stars All cars and no dialogue make these jacks dull boys
After the opening legal boilerplate flashed by, I sat in vain waiting for the movie to start. What I got was adolescent boys of all ages revving their engines and conversing at a... Read more
Published on Sept. 4 2003 by paul_howard
5.0 out of 5 stars best collector dvd offer ever
This is without any doubt the best dvd collectors offer ever. It is packaged in a metal tin( which is totally cool, looks just like the vhs box I have. Read more
Published on April 15 2003
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