Friday, November 11, 2016

Favorite Scene Friday! The Blues Brothers: Drive-Thru Mall

This month over at the LAMB the Cult Chops subject is Carsploitation Movies, so what better time could there be than to look at a film that featured some of the most ridiculously fun car chases in history?
Poster by Dan Sherratt

Jake Blues (John Belushi) has just been released from prison and picked up by his brother Elwood (Dan Aykroyd), only to find he is living in squalor, the orphanage they grew up in is about to be demolished, and Elwood had to trade in their Cadillac for a re-purposed police car. Also Elwood has a ludicrous list of driving violations, so after they pledge to save the orphanage by raising money from a concert, they are pulled over and almost arrested, but manage to speed away with the police close on their tail, and this is what happens next:


Yes it's silly, but it's also a lot of fun. After doing a few laps of the parking lot Jake exasperatedly complains about the situation, pleading they get back to the interstate, so Elwood takes the only option available to them - driving through the mall, with the police in pursuit, destroying practically everything they come across.

I enjoy this scene mainly because it's literally three real cars driving through crowds of real people, smashing up a real shopping mall. It's the abandoned Dixie Square Mall in Illinois, within which many of the stores did not wish to be depicted in the film, so had to be covered with the storefronts seen in the scene. There's an element of wish fulfilment here - no-one gets injured, it's just about smashing stuff up - and it looks like it was a lot of fun to shoot too.

What really makes the scene for me though are the performances from Aykroyd and Belushi, who dead-pan their way through the destruction, casually pointing out the various shops, products and offers around them as they go, as if out taking a stroll rather than causing utter destruction. Also I find it all but impossible to listen to the song playing (I've always known it as The Blues Brothers' Theme but it's actually Hold On I'm Comin' by Sam & Dave) without grooving along to the tune. And what kind of a silly car chase would it be without one of the cop cars sliding along and spinning around on it's roof?

Do you have a favorite comedic car chase?

1 comment:

  1. They broke my watch!

    Fantastic scene. Recently showed this movie to Susie for the first time and I'm happy to say she really enjoyed it. So much fun craziness. But this is ridiculous, so many people would have died in real life.

    And for favorite comedic car chase, I'd have to go with this: https://youtu.be/WC3OP2vVALo

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