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Nice Cars - Shame About The Film

There is a select group of British films in which the viewer thinks a) what great cars b) the poor cast and c) I have just wasted at least 70 minutes of my life on this utter tripe. Here are just seven pictures which are always worth watching for various Jaguars, Triumphs or Wolseleys, even if they have the dramatic impact of the BBC Test Card. Enjoy….

Car Trouble 1985 – Jaguar E-Type 4.2 Series I


Despite a cast of real quality, the leads are Julie Walters and Ian Charleston, and the presence of the E-Type, Car Trouble was one of those 1980s ‘comedies’ that seemed to last approximately seven hours. At least there are interesting background vehicles, from an HC Viva to a VW Jetta, while naturally for a British film of this era, the police arrive in a Rover SD1.

Carry On Emmannuelle 1978 – Triumph Stag


My advice to anyone thinking of watching a film of such ineptitude is to fast forward to the scenes involving Larry Dann’s Stag. Then fast-forward again. Quickly. Then immediately put the DVD on eBay.

Confessions of a Driving Instructor 1975 – Ford Cortina Mk. II/Bentley S2


Now, it might just be me, but I have always found this “comedy” to have all the inherent pace and humour of a public information film about the uses of shoe polish. However, the cars and street scenes are genuinely fascinating, plus they help to divert attention from Robin Askwith losing his trousers yet again.

Crossroads to Crime 1960 – Ford Zephyr Mk. II Convertible


Made by Gerry Anderson on a budget of exceeding lowness, this searing drama about lorry heists in Slough is unmissable, especially as almost everyone is out-performed by the Zephyr, various lorries and random lamp posts.  The trailer says it all…

Danger by My Side 1962 – Jaguar Mk. VII


A B-Film that can be charitably described as ‘awful’, Danger by My Side does at least feature an early Mk. VII to distract from the acting, script and direction. Admittedly, the scene involving an Austin A55 Cambridge is unintentionally entertaining, as is the ‘assassination’ scene which features a Ford Zephyr-Six Mk. I trundling along at 10 mph.

Dateline Diamonds 1965 – Jaguar E-Type 3.8 Roadster/Wolseley 6/99/Volvo 122S


The music from the Small Faces, The Chantelles and Kiki Dee is fantastic although the plot concerning diamond smuggling aboard the pirate station Radio London slightly lacks plausibility as does the E-Type/police Wolseley chase scene. Also notable as the first picture to feature the Ford Transit and, yes, the short-back-and-sided DJ neatly attired in a sports jacket and tie is a very young Kenny Everett.

Dracula A.D. 1972 Triumph Stag/Citroen Dyane 6


The year is 1972 (obviously) and the Count’s disciple Johnny Alucard speeds around the King’s Road in his Triumph PR fleet Stag, attempting to involve some very old-looking teenagers in vampirism; one of them is a pre-Foyle War Michael Kitchen. Will one of Citroen’s finest flat twins assist in defeating a profoundly grumpy-looking Christopher Lee? Watch the film to find out and remember ‘Dig the music kids!’



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