Cinema film board
Ryan Darby

Ryan Darby

Ryan takes the lead on all things 'wordy'. With a sports media background, a true passion for cars, and a LOT of driving experience under his belt, he'll make sure you have all the information you need, when you need it.

Read time of 5 minutes.

Grab the popcorn, load up Netflix and we’ll take care of the rest

From fast car chases to cars from history, there is no better way to spend an evening with your household than getting stuck into some gripping action and awesome car scenes.

We’ve scoured the web and spoken to some knowledgeable car movie fanatics. From big names to historic car movie scenes, this list has a bit of everything.

Whether you’re planning your next movie night or want to get the adrenaline pumping while you wait for the delivery of your next car lease, we’ve picked out six of the most gripping and exciting car movies you need to watch.

Gran Turismo (2023)

IMDb rating: 7.4/10

Starting with the most recent release of them all, Gran Turismo. Bringing a video game to life, this is a spectacle not to be missed.

Based on the iconic racing simulator, this film focused on the rise of Jann Mardenborough, an avid teenage gamer who turned his hobby into a profession.

With the potential to live out the ultimate teenage dream, Mardenborough’s rise to the top is anything but straightforward, despite his talent.

He is faced with many of the typical teenage encounters, including romance, run-ins with the law and more.

The Fast and The Furious: Tokyo Drift (2006)

IMDb rating: 6/10

The Fast and The Furious is a series that everyone knows and loves. One of the most famous car franchises in the world with high-intensity movies to choose from, but it’s Tokyo Drift we’re highlighting.

As the name suggests, the film focuses on the world of drift racing and follows the journey of a teenager who is sent to live with his father in Tokyo to avoid a jail sentence. His rebellious behaviour finds him racing in one of the most famous drift racing competitions in the world, but does everything go to plan?

As the team at Car Spotter said, “High octane, brightly coloured drift cars, an energising soundtrack and an action-packed storyline make Tokyo Drift a thrilling watch for all the family.”

Tokyo Drift developed a cult following among fans of the series and it was this film that saved the franchise that we know today. Vin Diesel was ready to walk away from the series and wasn’t planned to feature in the film originally, but a late cameo was secured after lengthy negotiations with director Justin Lin, and the rest is history.

Gone in 60 Seconds (2000)        

IMDb rating: 6.5/10

An ex-prisoner returns to his former world to save his brother’s life, but what he doesn’t know yet is that he has to steal 50 cars from the king of crime in order to retrieve his brother alive. Full of fast car action scenes, can he rely on his retired crime friends to help him complete the mission?

“The perfect film if you’re missing driving and have a love for all things automotive. Combining the criminal underworld of ‘stolen to order’ luxury vehicles and a variety of successful actors, Gone in 60 Seconds will have you on the edge of your seat.” say the team at Car Spotter.

Bullitt (1968)

IMDb rating: 7.4/10

Bullitt may not be the first car movie that springs to mind, in fact, you might not even consider it a car movie at all.

However, Sam from Anything Motor recommends Bullitt to us because of the action-packed car chase scenes, “OK, so not a full-bore driving film, it does have that chase scene, as Frank Bullitt in his Mustang 390 Fastback pursues mob perps in their Dodge Charger 440 to an explosive conclusion on the streets of San Francisco.

“There are a few goofs along the way (how many times do they drive past that Beetle?!), but it’s very worthy of its legendary status, and an altogether great film.”

Bullitt tells the tale of a San Francisco cop whose mission is to keep a witness out of sight for 48 hours before his court hearing. Things don’t go to plan and Bullitt seeks to find the crime squad who bought failure to his mission.

Ronin (1998)

IMDb rating: 7.2/10

A Robert De Niro classic, Ronin follows the dangerous mission of a team of former intelligence agents, but when the captor goes missing, who will show their true colours first? 

“This is one of the all-time great post-cold war spy thrillers with one of the best car chases sequences ever filmed by legendary director John Frankenheimer, said Niall, from Take to The Road.

“The cast is superb with Robert De Niro, Jean Reno, Natascha McElhone, Stellan Skarsgard, Sean Bean and Jonathan Pryce in lead roles.”

Some of the star cars in the chases are a Peugeot 605, a BMW 535i, an Audi S8, a Citroen XM, a Mercedes-Benz SW116. The high-speed chase through Paris is particularly nail-biting and hails from an era before CGI replaced a lot of real car stunts.

Drive (2011)

IMDb rating: 7.8/10

Drive was released in 2011 and is known as one of the most reputable driving films of recent years. A Hollywood stunt performer discovers that a contract has been put on him after a failed heist. Falling in love doesn’t help his troubles and protecting his new love sees him on the wrong side of the law.

Adam Tudor-Lane from Car Witter, explains why Drive is a must-watch, “Possibly one of, if not THE slickest driving films ever. Drive melds together a super cool antihero who stunt drives by day and acts as a getaway driver by night. Gritty, raw action plays out in between the car chases with a little love story intertwined for goodwill. 

“Think of it as Bullitt but for the modern era, with Ryan Gosling taking over the reins from the legend that is Steve McQueen.”

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