HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
American Fiction
Poor Things
Thunderclap
Zeiram
Legend of the Bat
Party Line
Night Fright
Pacha, Le
Kimi
Assemble Insert
Venus Tear Diamond, The
Promare
Beauty's Evil Roses, The
Free Guy
Huck and Tom's Mississippi Adventure
Rejuvenator, The
Who Fears the Devil?
Guignolo, Le
Batman, The
Land of Many Perfumes
Cat vs. Rat
Tom & Jerry: The Movie
Naked Violence
Joyeuses Pacques
Strangeness, The
How I Became a Superhero
Golden Nun
Incident at Phantom Hill
Winterhawk
Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City
Maigret Sets a Trap
B.N.A.
Hell's Wind Staff, The
Topo Gigio and the Missile War
Battant, Le
Penguin Highway
Cazadore de Demonios
Snatchers
Imperial Swordsman
Foxtrap
   
 
Newest Articles
3 From Arrow Player: Sweet Sugar, Girls Nite Out and Manhattan Baby
Little Cat Feat: Stephen King's Cat's Eye on 4K UHD
La Violence: Dobermann at 25
Serious Comedy: The Wrong Arm of the Law on Blu-ray
DC Showcase: Constantine - The House of Mystery and More on Blu-ray
Monster Fun: Three Monster Tales of Sci-Fi Terror on Blu-ray
State of the 70s: Play for Today Volume 3 on Blu-ray
The Movie Damned: Cursed Films II on Shudder
The Dead of Night: In Cold Blood on Blu-ray
Suave and Sophisticated: The Persuaders! Take 50 on Blu-ray
Your Rules are Really Beginning to Annoy Me: Escape from L.A. on 4K UHD
A Woman's Viewfinder: The Camera is Ours on DVD
Chaplin's Silent Pursuit: Modern Times on Blu-ray
The Ecstasy of Cosmic Boredom: Dark Star on Arrow
A Frosty Reception: South and The Great White Silence on Blu-ray
You'll Never Guess Which is Sammo: Skinny Tiger and Fatty Dragon on Blu-ray
Two Christopher Miles Shorts: The Six-Sided Triangle/Rhythm 'n' Greens on Blu-ray
Not So Permissive: The Lovers! on Blu-ray
Uncomfortable Truths: Three Shorts by Andrea Arnold on MUBI
The Call of Nostalgia: Ghostbusters Afterlife on Blu-ray
Moon Night - Space 1999: Super Space Theater on Blu-ray
Super Sammo: Warriors Two and The Prodigal Son on Blu-ray
Sex vs Violence: In the Realm of the Senses on Blu-ray
What's So Funny About Brit Horror? Vampira and Bloodbath at the House of Death on Arrow
Keeping the Beatles Alive: Get Back
   
 
  Cars that Ate Paris, The Salvage Squad
Year: 1974
Director: Peter Weir
Stars: John Meillon, Terry Camilleri, Kevin Miles, Rick Scully, Max Gillies, Danny Adcock, Bruce Spence, Melissa Jaffer
Genre: Horror, WeirdoBuy from Amazon
Rating:  7 (from 1 vote)
Review: Arthur (Terry Camilleri) and his brother George are driving through the Australian countryside one night when suddenly lights blaze before their car and they are forced off the road. George dies in the crash, but Arthur survives, and awakens in the hospital of the small town of Paris, a town which, as he discovers, scavenge what they can from staged road accidents - including people...

Peter Weir's first feature-length film as director was one he wrote with the help of Keith Gow and Piers Davis, and, like the inhabitants of the town it depicts, it took elements from many sources as spare parts to build its bigger picture: horror, science fiction, comedy and westerns among them. The introduction shows, at first sight, a television commercial as a young, attractive couple drive through the countryside, stopping off to buy a painting at an antiques shop and enjoying brand name cigarettes and cola. Then it turns nightmarish as their car crashes and they die in the wreckage.

The Australian Parisians are on the lowest rung of society's ladder, pillaging what they can to keep their town together. But it's not really running like clockwork, as the resident doctor (Kevin Miles) performs experiments on the accident victims, turning them into semi-vegetables, and the local youths customise the wrecked cars to create demolition derby vehicles that prowl the streets at night. Nice touches to illustrate the second-hand nature of life there include the use of car radios instead of stereos and the doctor utilising a power drill for a bit of D.I.Y. surgery.

The Mayor, superbly played by John Meillon, is outwardly a stuffy, respectable man, but his efforts to bring his community together are pathetic when they're not downright murderous. He takes in Arthur and ensures he stays in Paris by making him mentally unable to drive a car through amateur psychology, gives him a useless job and asks him to join his family when it looks like Arthur will leave. We learn that his daughters aren't even his, just orphans from a car crash.

There may be moments of black humour, such as the scenes of the inappropriately cheerful hospital janitor ("Have you ever seen a bloke with a foot up his nose?"), but the overall tone is sickly and grim. The finale, which sees the town self-destruct when the youths drive their cars through the houses and people, is bloody, featuring an unforgettable Volkswagen Beetle covered in spikes as one of the killer vehicles. What starts as a satire on consumerism ends up with an uncertain message, and Arthur's rediscovery of his courage doesn't leave you reassured, but Weir's film, which resembles a seventies, Australian version of The League of Gentlemen TV series, is undeniably memorable. Music by Bruce Smeaton.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 8465 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 

Peter Weir  (1944 - )

Australian writer and director with a touch of the mystical about his work, usually fish out of water dramas. After various short films, he made The Cars That Ate Paris, a darkly funny horror which nearly ended his career when it failed financially. But he bounced back with Picnic at Hanging Rock, an international hit which led to apocalyptic fantasy The Last Wave, war tragedy Gallipoli and political thriller The Year of Living Dangerously, whereupon he moved to Hollywood to direct Amish thriller Witness, survival tale The Mosquito Coast, Dead Poets Society (possibly his worst film), comedy Green Card, spiritual air crash drama Fearless, science fiction satire The Truman Show, historical adventure Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World and WW2 era trek movie The Way Back.

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Darren Jones
Enoch Sneed
  Louise Hackett
Mark Le Surf-hall
Andrew Pragasam
Mary Sibley
Graeme Clark
  Desbris M
   

 

Last Updated: