Two-Lane Blacktop
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Two-Lane Blacktop

1971
Drama
Adventure
1h 42m
Your probable score
Avg Percentile 63.66% from 699 total ratings

Ratings & Reviews

(699)
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Rated 03 Mar 2009
66
14th
Taylor and Wilson play two metaph...err, CHARACTERS that live only to race their cars in order to win enough money to race their cars some more. They meet a girl that they (and we) don't care about. They also meet GTO, another racer we sorta care about, since he's the only character given any semblance of depth, and he's the only real actor present. While I appreciate the hell out of the nihilistic message, and I enjoyed some of the landscape shots, this was tedious, confusing, and unnecessary.
Rated 21 Mar 2009
4
74th
Beneath all the car talk lurks a pondering existential character study, with a touch of nihilism. There's the two young and anxious drifters ("you can never go fast enough"), and then you've got Warren Oates as the older counterpoint who seems to be trying to preserve his youth, even if it means compulsively lying about the past. I enjoyed the ambiguity and what felt like near-aimlessness. A much more subtle offering next to the film it's most compared to, Easy Rider.
Rated 10 Mar 2010
9
93rd
Everything that Easy Rider got wrong, this got right. I also like how it ended, could've easily been 5 hours longer but ending the way it did was pretty much perfect. It's definitely an unconventional movie and saying that it's slow moving or complaining about the lack of dialogue is just strange to me. It's about so much more like the notion of disenchantment, finding yourself, and looking for authenticity in the world. Really lives up to its reputation.
Rated 07 Dec 2011
85
80th
Although I normally loathe these aimless, high brow existential films where the plot sort of falls apart halfway through, this was some how very enjoyable, even though the plot does exactly just...erm, well. For a cross country road race movie it feels surprisingly claustrophobic and slow. But the slow pacing doesn't matter when the mood (one of loss and loneliness) is as effectively conveyed as it is here. Cannonball Run by way of Antonioni, if you will.
Rated 28 Jun 2023
89
91st
A protagonist that hardly speaks and an antagonist that won't shut up. I love this movie but I'm more than a little relieved that they never serialized this like they did Fast and Furious. By now we'd be up to Twenty-Lane Blacktop.
Rated 20 Mar 2008
72
48th
This is a pretty cool (in both senses, stylish and emotionally detached) film that reminded me a lot of other offbeat meandering character pieces Easy Rider and Five Easy Pieces. This one is interesting enough, but ultimately it didn't really resonate with me - the obsession of these characters and the way it breaks down in the presence of the possibility of affection and human relationships is a decent theme, but it didn't really have the poignancy or punch of other, greater films.
Rated 07 Oct 2021
85
88th
Post-68, defeated young men aimlessly race for money. Their revolutionary energy is sucked by roads and machines. That's why the girl is "exhausted", she is constantly sleeping or tired. She is attracted to anything that moves, that has life (but there is no hope anymore). GTO is also aimless, looking for a family (mother and two sons?), telling lies about shiny car movies he saw. But this is an anti-car movie in a sense, where Bresson and Antonioni come together in an existential journey.
Rated 16 Feb 2012
85
96th
Existential angst in a '55 Chevy.
Rated 06 Jul 2008
85
84th
Takes the Easy Rider template and turns it around, shaking out some of the cynicism and nastiness and striking much closer to the heart. Although the film does seem to find reason to have a small amount of hope along the search for meaning, things don't look too bright for any of the characters by the end. The movie also runs deep with a rich feeling of Americana. Other countries have their own car/road movies, but it's impossible to imagine this one being made anywhere else.
Rated 21 Aug 2011
98
99th
Like a meditation with roaring engines.
Rated 13 Oct 2013
75
85th
Hmm, Got to say that I liked it. I went into it thinking I would be bored and end up hating it but strangely that never happened.
Rated 05 Mar 2017
82
91st
Obviously gets compared to Easy Rider which had the greater cultural impact, but Two-Lane Blacktop is the far superior film. It's very minimalist and dry, and the lack of obvious conflict both adds to the film and is also why it doesn't get talked about outside of film nerd circles. Score will probably go up if I ever get around to rewatching it.
Rated 11 Jul 2012
67
43rd
Three out of four main characters being empty shells doesn't really make for a great film. It's more of an interesting time capsule than an interesting movie. At least Warren Oates was there to save it for me.
Rated 30 Jan 2009
100
97th
I'm not sure who's cooler, James Taylor, Warren Oates, or Harry Dean Stanton.
Rated 17 Mar 2021
80
86th
I couldn't care less about cars but I nevertheless had a whole lot of fun with this very loosely plotted 70s classic.
Rated 01 Mar 2007
70
82nd
Cult classic.
Rated 07 May 2015
8
80th
GTO (Oates) is an old vulture whose life is a disappointment, so his MO is to associate with wandering youths (with added hopes of potentially fucking one of them). The two boys have tunnel-vision and obsess over cars, which doesn't seem to amount to much, for better or worse. The girl, probably the most sympathetic character, bounces from person to person, wandering and lonely. Why she's giving these losers the time of day, who knows. People mostly look the other way at her. Not a fun movie?
Rated 14 Aug 2007
92
90th
Warren Oates is too cool....
Rated 17 Jan 2023
75
88th
A mesmerising film. Fundamentally broken characters searching for meaning, hitting wall after wall in their futile attempts to find purpose within the world that they know, one devoid of substance. They are all great in their fields of expertise: the driver, the mechanic, the hitchhiker, the bullshitter. But doing more of what they are comfortable doing as an attempt to find meaning, stepping out but failing to connect to each other, ultimately leads them nowhere. Great final shots.
Rated 29 Oct 2012
90
85th
"You can never go fast enough." Those words don't quite hit their full resonance until the final frames of the film. The driver is a quiet, steely-eyed man. He seems like nothing more than a skeleton with next to no qualities that could help form a personal connection. While this mostly remains true, it's a hell-bent desire to run that pushes his resolve and obsession. GTO provides some levity as a two-bit storyteller torn between dimestore rushes and settling. Stick with it, it's worth it.
Rated 29 Aug 2012
60
13th
good, slow 70s movie, take your time, it's worth it
Rated 22 Jan 2013
95
99th
don't know why, but its touching my bones. perhaps it has something to do with my kerosene heart. grey freedom.
Rated 28 Oct 2018
85
84th
Much like it's iconic stipped down 55 chevy, "Two-Lane Blacktop" sticks out like a sore thumb amongst the crowd of sexier, louder and more thrilling vintage chase/road films. TLB is a lonely, meditative anti-drama featuring empty characters, rainy skies and maybe the most perfect non-ending ever committed to film. Added to the list of infinite rewatchables.
Rated 03 Oct 2014
80
92nd
Bresson meets Antonioni on America's loneliest highway. Not an easy film to pinpoint by any means, and while there is a certain naivety to the way the European influences are appropriated--which is typical of New Hollywood directors, including Scorsese--there is an undeniable resonance to this existential road film about cultural rootlessness and male identity which makes it superior to Easy Rider. Hellman's understated approach pays unexpected dividends while Oates steals the show.
Rated 22 Nov 2020
84
75th
Pretty great. Everything moves in this film, though the desire to stop zips by every so often, like one more town on the road to . . . where exactly? The stripped down aesthetic--much more akin to the 55 chevy than the souped up GTO--works beautifully, while the camera has a way of locating the action without the need for expository dialogue.
Rated 08 Nov 2011
95
93rd
I know this is one of those movies that will only continue to grow on me. I'd kill to see it in the theater. It's the kind of thing you need to just let wash over you, absorb all of its details. A more accurate existential ennui road movie than Easy Rider, I think. A film that's just going to keep on giving. (two times)
Rated 19 Feb 2024
80
87th
As successful as a film like Le Samourai, in that there is a certain mystique surrounding three of the main characters that is never compromised. We don't exactly identify with them, they're a bit too cool for that - the miracle then being that, in spite of this, we see visible expressions of a seething undercurrent of desire, affliction of regular, tiny little humans. Its concentration towards this obnoxious activity they seem so enraptured by occupies much of the film.
Rated 27 Jun 2019
60
36th
Two great musicians, but the acting....
Rated 15 Nov 2019
90
87th
The finest of the existential road movies that populate the 1970's, Hellman really knows how to tell stories in which very little happens. He fills his wide frame with meticulously composed shots of the empty countryside. The three non-actors in main roles are extremely well-cast. Oates is magnificent in the most demanding role in the film. Harry Dean Stanton shows up to brighten everyone's day and screenwriter Rudy Wurlitzer show up to lose a race to Taylor.
Rated 12 Aug 2019
97
97th
Cool like Tarantino wishes he was.
Rated 25 Oct 2019
84
87th
Some of the cuts and acting are kind of amateur-ish but the mood and easiness of watching this film override most of that. Like Vanishing Point, you're left to enjoy the open road with the characters and learn a little bit about them along the way, but the characters are secondary. I'm not a car person at all but still enjoyed this a great deal.
Rated 02 Sep 2023
95
84th
I had way more fun with this than I thought I would. We never learn the characters’ names. There’s little music. There’s a plot, but we’re essentially just watching some people race. And I was a bit floored by how fascinating it was. I particularly loved the film’s depiction of loneliness and finding your purpose in a world that may or may not give a crap about you. Warren Oates was the best a character and performance, but the road is undoubtedly the MAIN character. Very ahead of it’s time.
Rated 28 Jan 2021
60
19th
& YCl3
Rated 26 Jun 2021
72
51st
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Rated 07 Aug 2022
49
8th
This isn't a terrible film by any means, but I am very aggressively not the target audience for this, but I would imagine people who are into cars and lived through this period or experienced these options more than I have might love it. It's been called by many Easy Rider for cars, and I can see the comparison. I hated Easy Rider. Didn't much like this, but found it considerably more watchable than Easy Rider. The beginning drags a lot, as does the end--there are pretty good parts in the middle
Rated 01 Sep 2022
78
78th
This is a road movie in its purest form. The scenery, the music, the cars, the setting. With the contrast of the characters from the two blank-faced racers and the nameless girl who goes where she wants like a cat, and the opponent who lives a life of lies because no matter how much he tries, he can't just find that Real Thing, there's plenty to observe here. It's certainly different so it's give or take if a person is going to like it, but my mind did rest on those dusty roads.
Rated 30 Oct 2022
82
62nd
A really good downbeat tone that carries the movie a long way but struggles with the characters, with the exception of Oates’ GTO, who is endlessly fascinating.
Rated 31 Jul 2023
65
8th
this whole film kind of felt like a charade to me - the aborted drag race at the start, the superficial characters, the supposed race to DC which seems like a front to drag anyone into their chaos that they can...feels like you can reach quite deeply into this as use it as metaphor for post 60's hippy USA Warren Oates character is equal parts ingratiating and agonizing, the complete self mythologizing of himself speaks to the idea of Americana and Route 66
Rated 09 Mar 2009
54
8th
Rather dull with mediocre acting. Not terrible but the car obsessions and meandering aimlessness did nothing for me.
Rated 19 Dec 2008
78
56th
435
Rated 27 Dec 2008
94
93rd
Corrida Sem Fim estreava há 50 anos em New York. um dos filmes mais cool dos anos 70 e obra máxima de Monte Hellman, mas devo confessar que gostava mais dele quando era jovem, meio que perde o encanto quando viramos velhos rabugentos, nessa pegada Easy Rider e Vanishing Point me parecem filmes mais potentes em comparação. Box Versátil O Cinema da Nova Hollywood Volume 1
Rated 01 Mar 2008
76
61st
# 473
Rated 07 Dec 2010
85
96th
Antonionian--i.e. more abstract than emotional, and more visual than narrative based. Like Antonioni, the film deals with alienation and dissatisfaction. What's interesting besides the way the visual elements communicate these ideas, is the way the establishment and anti-establishment characters are in the same boat (or car, as it were). Add the wide open spaces, and the big, fast cars, and you've got one of the best American road movies of all-time.
Rated 12 Sep 2017
61
30th
I appreciate the idea of having your characters be a little odd. But this way it's just confusing and doesn't make much sense. Which makes the movie more boring and less interesting than it needs to be. Which is a bummer, because I really dig the setting and the cinematography of this thing. And what it's trying to do, I guess. But there's just not enough atmosphere to the movie for me to really enjoy it. At least it doesn't have one of those shitty American 70s endings. :D
Rated 11 Feb 2018
89
94th
Monte Hellmen's "Easy Rider in cars" can be a difficult film. With its stark depiction of Route 66-America and its muted soundtrack, accessing the two leads is often frustrating. Ultimately, The Mechanic and The Driver are two blank slates. GTO, on the other hand, is a character rich with conflict. Whatever he is running to or running from has consumed him. Clinging to his car is not proving successful, and he reaches out to the youth of this Americana to help him find his way.
Rated 14 Aug 2008
100
96th
Another existential '70s classic from Monte Hellman. Oates is supurb as "GTO."
Rated 20 Feb 2012
48
25th
Mediocre.
Rated 16 Jul 2009
77
62nd
Two-lane Blacktop: 8 // 7 // 7 // 8 // 9 // 8 // 5 // mais 2 pontos pelo tema
Rated 13 Mar 2010
73
79th
Begs comparison to Vanishing Point released the same year, which also has high-speed interstate car action. The difference is that Two-Lane Blacktop is good, really good in fact. A subtle, understated drama, with excellent, naturalistic acting. Apart from the use of the superb actor Warren Oates, Monte Hellman shares with Sam Peckinpah the celebration of, meditation on, and most especially - discomfort with - testosterone and masculine behavior. These features are revisited in Cockfighter.
Rated 14 Aug 2007
84
95th
Superb performance by Warren Oates. Perhaps the most Anthropocenic movie ever made (see: https://www.academia.edu/29677705/Moving_Images_of_the_Anthropocene_Rethinking_Cinema_Beyond_Anthropology_2016_).
Rated 28 Jul 2011
75
59th
Wistfully existential, this road movie prides itself on its Spartan qualities. Nobody's got a name or much of a goal in life, and the world seems to care as little for them as they do in return. The soundtrack is purely naturalistic and the performances are properly subdued, with Warren Oates being the clear standout. I'm not much into cars or the accompanying jargon, but there's a lot. It's a decent product of such an incredible era in American cinema, full of innovation and risks. Cool ending.
Rated 30 Nov 2011
73
46th
#532
Rated 14 Jun 2008
69
68th
Some things hurt more, much more than cars and girls...
Rated 14 Apr 2010
80
57th
Blacktop is a slower paced road movie, delving into the frustration of wanderlust and male identity. It's a shame three out of the four leads are awful actors...plus that girl looked liked she was way too young to be getting diddled by a bunch of greasers.
Rated 29 Oct 2008
70
78th
James Taylor? What the hell?
Rated 08 Mar 2017
50
24th
It breathes life and follows closely the duel on the road. But it is also quite boring; there is nothing to rest your eyes on or to enjoy silently.
Rated 22 Feb 2013
100
96th
watched: 2013, 2020
Rated 30 Oct 2013
70
44th
Very existential. As for how I feel about this, I'm not quite sure. I appreciate what the film is trying to do, I liked the look at loneliness and at struggling to make connections, and I did love how Warren Oates' character never really tells the truth to people about himself. In fact, that bit of Oates' character is probably my favourite bit of the film and the one bit to hit me on a gut level. The rest of the film never quite managed to properly resonate with me in quite the same way.
Rated 31 Mar 2017
67
29th
I like seeing (older) films that are evidently submerged in their current culture, so in that regard it makes this film an admirable and sometimes rewarding watch. Other times, it can feel so ambient from scene to scene that it made me pray for them to end, especially as the concept has little tension behind it. The last shot was very cool and very memorable.
Rated 11 Aug 2017
46
6th
I'm not sure I'm equipped to properly appreciate classic road movies--even ones like this, which seems to offer a critique on the ideals promoted by films like Easy Rider. Thanks to empty characters and story, though, none of the cynicism landed for me, which left the moody driving scenes (80% of the movie) tedious and impotent. In the end it feels like both a mourning of the death of and a commentary on the independent spirit of '60s America, which has, you know, been done before.
Rated 24 Feb 2019
60
35th
Somewhat nostalgic in a look back to the days when guys just wanted to work on their cars and go faster than anyone else. The characters here all want a little more with their lives but just aren't quite sure the direction to go to get it. Ultimately, I found it hard to believe a story that has some drag racing in it could be so slow.
Rated 15 Jan 2010
74
48th
518
Rated 30 Jan 2010
75
63rd
The road can be both liberating and isolating. The characters are rarely alone (the young group has each other and the GTO is constantly picking up hitchhikers) and yet they're alone most of the time. I like here that the director wasn't afraid to let the characters just be quiet. The racing scenes don't do much for me but there are some really neat sequences. The ending in pretty interesting different given some of its contemporaries.
Rated 09 Mar 2014
70
76th
A truly strange experience (preceding the Fast & Furious franchise) with terrible acting to spare save a brilliant Warren Oates.

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