The Wraith (1986)

Posted: March 24, 2012 in Movie Review
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The Wraith (1986)

Directed By: Mike Marvin

Starring: Charlie Sheen, Nick Cassavetes, Sherilyn Fenn, Randy Quaid, Matthew Barry, Clint Howard, David Sherrill

Subgenre: Science Fiction

The Wraith

Synopsis: A mysterious driver in a Turbo Interceptor seeks revenge on a gang of hoodlums with a penchant for illegal auto racing.

Thoughts: This is one of those movies from my childhood that is probably not as good as the memories around it, but I still love it anyways.  The fast cars and ultra-cool Turbo Interceptor (actually the Dodge M4S concept car) appealed to me when I was ten years old, and they are still pretty damn cool.  While poking around the expanses of the Internet, I stumbled on this pretty cool site where a guy actually restored the Interceptor!

Aside from the multiple races and high speed chases in the movie, The Wraith actually touts a pretty impressive cast.  The most obvious example is a young Charlie Sheen.  The mid-eighties were very kind to Sheen with Platoon, Wall Street and Young Guns, and the studio was lucky to get Sheen to star here before he became a massive star.  Nick Cassavetes is a well-known name to cinophiles, but not for his acting chops.  He comes from a family deeply entrenched in the film industry and has directed many popular movies such as Alpha Dog and The Notebook.  I’m still waiting for him to helm a sequel to The Wraith.  You even have Randy Quaid playing the Sheriff who doesn’t really care that the gang is being killed off, but attempts to investigate none the less.  Last, but most certainly not least, is genre favorite Clint Howard.  Clint plays Rughead, the gang member responsible for tweeking the cars so they are as fast as possible.  He also has quite possibly one of the most bizarre haircuts ever.

The Wraith - Rughead

While Director Mike Marvin has stayed busy since The Wraith, this appears to be his most well-known movie, unless you are a fan of late night Cinemax style movies, as it appears he was involved in at least a few of those.  It’s too bad, as it appeared like he had at least some semblance of how to film car chases.

Like I said, this is a childhood favorite of mine, so of course I suggest you check it out.  That being said, it’s not exactly great cinema.  Sit back and revel in the joy of the 80s and one cool ass car.      


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