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Race With the Devil
Race With the Devil
Actors: Peter Fonda, Warren Oates, Loretta Swit, Lara Parker, R.G. Armstrong
Director: Jack Starrett
Genres: Action & Adventure, Drama, Horror, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Mystery & Suspense
PG     2005     1hr 28min

Frank (Warren Oates) and Roger (Peter Fonda) take off for Colorado with their wives in a recreational vehicle, looking forward to some skiing and dirt biking. While camping en route, they witness a satanic ritual sacrific...  more »


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Movie Details

Actors: Peter Fonda, Warren Oates, Loretta Swit, Lara Parker, R.G. Armstrong
Director: Jack Starrett
Creators: Robert C. Jessup, John F. Link, Lee Frost, Paul Maslansky, Wes Bishop
Genres: Action & Adventure, Drama, Horror, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Mystery & Suspense
Sub-Genres: Action & Adventure, Drama, Horror, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Mystery & Suspense
Studio: Starz / Anchor Bay
Format: DVD - Color,Widescreen
DVD Release Date: 06/28/2005
Release Year: 2005
Run Time: 1hr 28min
Screens: Color,Widescreen
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 11
MPAA Rating: PG (Parental Guidance Suggested)
Languages: English

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Member Movie Reviews

Richard B. from PETERBOROUGH, NH
Reviewed on 6/14/2010...
I remember watching this when it first came out in the 70’s. It scared me then and it still scares me now…someone could really run across crazy people like this… only wish I could find it in Blu-ray
I will be watching it a few more times and will love it each time.
1 of 1 member(s) found this review helpful.
S A A. (Learned2Heal)
Reviewed on 11/28/2008...
Although I am not usually a fan of horror flicks, this one caught my eye once, long ago. Since it struck me as being more of a suspense film than a horror film, omitting the overdone wholesale gore of most other horror movies I'd seen, I ended up watching the whole thing and really liking it. In fact, I have watched it several times since, almost every time it has come up again on TV.

The acting and milieu are very 70's, which is fun. The movie's plot is well laid out and pulls you right in from the start. The scenes lull you with the sunny moments of carefree vacationers, without a care in the world, who repeatedly get sucked into the hyper-anxious world of becoming the hunted prey because of something two of them inadvertently witnessed.

There is a subtle, well-timed rhythm to this movie where the four main characters are chatting easily amongst themselves with banal casualness one moment, only to find themselves drawn back into extreme fear mode, time and again, by an event or a clue that shows they are not safe yet. This give and take is so well done, that you never quite know when to expect danger to rear its ugly head again. The actors are excellent in their roles and the special effects are not overdone, but quite good and very chilling.

Spiced with a good dose of paranoia. If you like to feel that tingle in your spine and your hair rising ever so gently on the back of your neck, this movie is for you.
2 of 2 member(s) found this review helpful.
Jeff V. (burielofmel) from HARRIMAN, TN
Reviewed on 7/30/2008...
The cover art on this might lead you to think it's one of those cheapy b-movies but it's not. Though the subject matter is different the quality is as good as other movies of the time such as Deliverance. It stars Peter Fonda of Easy Rider, Loretta who played Hot Lips on MASH and that actress who played a witch on Dark Shadows actually does a commentary track for this film. The commentary is good on this one as it gives a little insight into what it would have been like to be a famous actor back in the 70s. Now days most horror movies have thier stars going on talk shows and MTV and they are filled with CGI which I think makes it hard to get scared by modern horror films. This is like the movie Duel in that you are able to forget you're watching professional actors and you're able to let yourself be pulled into the film. A lot of films don't hold up well with age but I think this one is as good or better than a lot of horror films made today.
4 of 6 member(s) found this review helpful.

Movie Reviews

"...and here's to the best damn vacation we may ever have in
cookieman108 | Inside the jar... | 07/03/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)

"Take a moment and think about the worst vacation you ever had...I've had a few doozys, but I think the absolute worst involved a time when I was in Florida and I got an ear infection for a few days and my activities were confined to laying on my side and administering liquid antibiotics into my ear via a medicine dropper. My point is everyone has had at least one vacation that didn't turn out as expected, but I think few could top the nightmare encountered by the two couples in the film Race with the Devil (1975), when they inadvertently incurred the wraith of a backwoods cult of Satanic devil worshippers. Co-written by Wes Bishop (Chain Gang Women, The Thing with Two Heads) and Lee Frost (Policewomen, Dixie Dynamite), the film was directed by Jack Starrett, who also appearing in a number of films, but many may remember him from is role as the purposely stereotypical western curmudgeon Gabby Johnson from Mel Brooks 1974 film Blazing Saddles. Starring in Race with the Devil is Warren `Quaker' Oates (Dillinger, Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia) along with Peter `One Toke Over the Line' Fonda, who, by the way, is set to appear in the new Ghost Rider film as the character of Mephisto. Also appearing is Loretta `Hot Lips' Swit ("M*A*S*H", Freebie and the Bean), Lara Parker ("Dark Shadows"), R.G. Armstrong (Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid, White Lightning), along with co-writer Bishop (he plays the character of Deputy Dave), and director Starrett, in his seminal role as `Gas Station Attendant'.

It seems two married couples, Frank (Oates) and Alice (Swit) Stewart and Roger (Fonda) and Kelly (Parker) March are finally taking a vacation, after five, long years building up a now successful motorcycle dealership. For the occasion Frank has gone balls to the walls and popped for a brand new, 32-foot motor home with all the modern conveniences, at least modern in 1975 terms. Their plan is to drive from Texas to Aspen and enjoy some snow skiing, but events conspire to make this a trip they'll never forget beginning with Frank deciding to find a secluded area to park the RV and rest for the night. It's around this time Frank and Roger witness a strange gathering or robed individuals dancing around a fire, performing some sort of ritual that culminates in the sacrifice of a young woman. The men, deciding it's time to leave (uh, yeah, I think so), accidentally arouse the attention of the group, and thus begins a nightmarish journey of escape and survival as the deadly cabal are determined to keep their secrets, even if it means following this RV to hell and back...

One thing I learned while watching this movie is that Satanists are an extremely persistent bunch...they really don't know when to quit, that, and one should watch out for low bridges, especially if you're perched on top of an RV...anyway, I've been looking forward to this film being released onto DVD for quite some time, as I think it is an excellent example of, despite a low budget, a film can still be entertaining and really well done given the talent and crew involved. The story is pretty straightforward with a few surprises (and some plot holes), but what elevates this beyond its means are the characters of Oates and Fonda, who play surprisingly well off each other, this being their 3rd film together, the other two being The Hired Hand (1971) and 92 in the Shade (1975). There is chemistry there, as the two complement each other. The one thing I didn't understand is if this group was as encompassing and organized as we were led to believe, I didn't understand why they didn't just get the couples during one of their stops for gas or would have been so much easier to take care of business then rather than chasing them down the highway at 60+ miles per hour, but then that would have taken away some of the excitement in removing some of the strongest action sequences. As far as the female leads, well, they really didn't have much to work with, as Ms. Swit's character was just there more or less to flesh out Oates' character, but Ms. Parker had a bit more (not much), as she was of the more sensitive type, picking up on sinister vibes before the rest of the group. In terms of direction I thought Starrett did very well, considering he was brought in early in the production as the original director was let go due to the powers that be feeling he up for the job. The film has a consistently creepy vibe throughout, as the unknown of who may be involved is a persistent factor. Starrett builds the momentum early, and keeps it going until the end. There are some scary moments, but I really wouldn't consider this so much a horror film, but more of one to give you the creeps. One of my favorite scenes is when Frank and Roger are witnessing the ritual and Frank's interested is piqued when the females begin disrobing and the distinct possibility of group intercourse is apparent...which is about the time the girl is killed and the two decide they're in the wrong place at the wrong time and decide to sneak away without drawing attention, only to have Frank's wife Alice unknowingly wake up the entire county with her annoying bray, calling her husband back to the RV...another sequence I really liked was later in the film, as the group is speeding down the road being chased by various vehicles filled with cult members. They cultists begin jumping on the RV Road Warrior style, and Frank has to fend them off, getting jiggy with a 12-gauge shotgun....woohoo! One thing I thought odd was during the sacrifice scene the girl to be offered up is stripped nekkid, but her nekkidness is blurred out...we see her behind the fire pit, so one could say perhaps the heat emanating from the fire caused this, but I'd wondering if this was how it was during the original didn't really bother me, but I do prefer the content of films on DVD to be as close to how they were originally released as possible.

The widescreen (1.85:1) picture, enhanced for 16 X 9 TVs, looks really sharp and clean on this Anchor Bay Entertainment DVD release. The audio is only available in Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono, but comes through clearly. There are some very worthwhile special features including a newly made featurette titled `Hell on Wheels' (17:51) with Peter Fonda relating a lot of interesting information about the film and his co-stars. Also included is a commentary track with producer Paul Maslansky, actress Lara Parker, moderated by DVD producer Perry Martin, an original theatrical trailer, three radio spots, a poster & still gallery, a behind-the-scenes photo gallery, previews for other Anchor Bay DVD releases like The Entity (1981), Quicksilver Highway (1997), Ghost in the Machine (1993), and a reproduction of an original poster of the film on a card inside the DVD case.


This just in...I heard a remake of this film is in the works, scheduled for a 2006 release, with Drew McWeeny (who should really think about changing his name) and Scott Swan as the writers (their previous credit includes Mortal Kombat: Devastation), and producer Chris Moore (American Pie, Reindeer Games) set as the director."
Schuyler V. Johnson | Lake Worth, FL USA | 06/25/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)

"What makes this movie so scary is that the people who are the monsters are the most ordinary people you could think of; gas station attendants, RV park retirees, Country Western bands and a local sheriff or two...and the premise is deceptively simple: two couples go on vacation in an RV big enough to house a family of twelve (only slight exaggeration) and on the FIRST night Warren Oates and Peter Fonda (after making the first mistake of turning off the main road and going off on their own into unknown territory in a well-intentioned effort to avoid crowds...) witness a Satanic Cult sacrifing a young girl...and Loretta Swit unwittingly becomes the catalyst for their unwanted attention by yelling at her husband to come in...then the story takes off in a hurry. And all the time there really are monsters everywhere you look...the same sort of every day plausible situation anyone could conceivably find themselves in; a Satanic version of Deliverance...another seemingly innocent situation that started out to be a simple canoe ride downriver turned into the nightmare from Hell.
What is so disturbing here is that no matter where they go or how far or how innocent the people they encounter along the way seem, all are against them and the ending is really terrifying and a genuine shocker. You don't get to relax for one single second; it is a fast nightmare ride, with pieces of the RV flying off, the women screaming and the men yelling and all sorts of nasty surprises along the way, culminating in the aforementioned, even more disturbing, climax. Well worth the price, great entertainment."
Highly watchable flick on a Satanist kick
Johnny S Geddes | Enlgand | 12/10/1999
(4 out of 5 stars)

"There's always been something disarming about the presence of Peter Fonda in a picture. Perhaps it's his 'nice guy' presence and you'd be right to assume that his starring in a horror movie would work against it. Not so in this case. Together with Oates and their stage wives, Fonda's presence is a good way of making of the terror strike home. The two couples are all-American high-end middle class types and they love living life to the fullest extent. And so they make a china shop ready for the horror bull to enter. The movie isn't as slow-moving as it may seem by the clock, it's just that there is a great deal of momentum being pent up in the early portions. When the scares actually do start, they are powerful and genuinely chilling. Let it be known that Satanist-bashing horror pictures were fairly common in the first half of the Seventies and here we find a whole string of Texan communities hard at it. The film is just the right length and its delivery is augmented tremendously by the dark conclusion. Despite the content, this film is watchable at all levels. I saw it when I was 10 years old and found it delightfully chilling. The direction is top rate and first class performances are extracted from Fonda and Oates. Truly an overlooked classic from a particularly adventurous era of fright cinema."