Saturday, May 23, 2015

Movie Review: Hot Rod Girl

Hot Rod Girl
Starring: Lori Nelson, Chuck Connors, John Smith, Mark Andrews, Roxanne Arlen, Frank Gorshin, Fred Essler, Eddie Ryder, Carolyn Kearney, Del Erickson, Russell Thorson, Dabbs Greer, Charles Keane 
Director: Leslie H. Martinson 
Nacirema Productions, American International Pictures (AIP), USA, 1956. 
Hot Rod Girl title
This movie can be found in Fuel Injected Films 20 Movie Collection by Mill Creek Entertainment. 

Lisa Vernon (Lori Nelson) is a Hot Rod enthusiast driving T-Bird. He has mechanic boyfriend Jeff Northrup (John Smith) and other friends Flat Top (Frank Gorshin, later Riddler from Batman) and Jeff's little brother Steve Northrup (Del Erickson). Detective Ben Merrill (Chuck Connors) is trying to stop kids from racing on the streets by supporting legal track races. The city officials would like to end the races. Lisa and Jeff are Ben's most trusted allies. 
Lori Nelson and John Smith
Lisa and Jeff
Del Erickson and Frank Gorshin
Steve and Flat Top
Lisa likes to race in her T-Bird
Steve dies after being taunted to street race. Jeff tried to stop him but the police interrogate him. Jeff blames himself for Steve's death and does not want to race anymore. The youngsters hang out at Yo-Yo (Fred Essler) place. The town may ban hot rods because of the accidents. Jeff's example is needed to keep the kids racing legally. 
Lori Nelson, Chuck Connors and John Smith
Det. Ben Merrill tries to keep the kids in legal races
Steve's hot rod
New arrogant drag-racer Bronc Talbott (Mark Andrews) appears in Yo-Yo's bar and wants his car repaired. He is directed to Henry Frye's (Dabbs Greer) garage where Jeff works. Trouble-maker Bronc then challenges Flat Top to play chicken. Ben tries once more to reason with the kids and keep them only racing on race track. However naughty Bronc forces Steve from his lane which causes a fatal accident. 
Fred Essler
Yo-Yo's bar
Roxanne Arlen and Eddie Ryder
L.P. and Two Tanks
Mark Andrews
Bronc Talbott is bad boy
The movie was made in cooperation with National Hot Rod Association (NHRA). Although this is not the best Hot Rod movie ever made it has all the elements the 1950s Hot Rod movie should have. The vintage cars look good. Guys are cool and girls are pretty. The excitement of the car races is enhanced by fast cuts. The movie does not try to show the hot rod kids as delinquents but the kids are nice in the style of "Happy Days." It is a bit preachy, but the bar scenes and the racing scene are adequately fun.

Rating: Good

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