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So, I watched American Graffiti last night and.....

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Kerry67, Sep 24, 2008.

  1. mart3406
    Joined: May 31, 2009
    Posts: 3,055

    mart3406
    Member
    from Canada

    -----------------------
    Kind of like what my 85-year-old dad
    says about the '42 Packard Clipper
    that he had for a while, circa 1951-53.
    He says with great pride regarding
    the Packard - - "That was the best car
    I ever pushed
    !" - but then usually
    follows it up with the statement -
    "They sure don't make cars like they
    used to ...thank god!!
    ":eek::D:D

    Mart3406
    ================
     
  2. Well let me start by saying that there are a couple of hours you will never get back. :rolleyes:

    More doors were MOM cars, wagons were for surfer dudes.

    I was very young back then but very involved none the less. Maybe life was like that in Modesto but the bottom line is that it is a movie. Made to sell to the general public and it was not about cars at all, it was about comming of age.
     
  3. My opinion is that cars were a huge part of coming of age. The movie has deeper social undertones, agreed, but to say it was not about cars at all???
     
  4. If all you get is cars (you in general not you crminal) then you have very little substance (shallow). The main storyline was about the kids who were out for their last fling before that had to be grown ups. There were side stories and there were cars in the movie, as well as grown men who cruised with little girls, fellas who robbed pinball machines, tricked the local cops I could go on.

    You can make the movie into anything you want and it is a cult classis but to say that it is a car movie because there are cars in it is like saying that "Hells Angels 69" is a motorcycle movie or that "77 Sunset Strip" is a series about a Corvette.

    We could debate it for hours but then we would watse another day wouldn't we. So I'll be the grown up here (something to which I am not accustomed) you win its a car movie.
     
  5. tfeverfred
    Joined: Nov 11, 2006
    Posts: 15,793

    tfeverfred
    Member

    He's actually on target. The cars and the atmosphere of hanging out were the stage. The real stories are of the 4 friends getting ready to have life changing experiences. Most of us have probably done it. That last grasp at a fading youth.

    Mine happened on my 30th birthday. Suddenly, things got serious, but later, as I looked back, things had changed and I either ignored them or pushed them away until they smacked me in the head. For others, it may have been marriage or even going into the military. Or getting a REAL job and a career.

    As Kurt said, "You wanna be like John. You can't stay 17 forever." That phrase actually sets the tone for the night. One last hurrah.

    There's really no debate. Lucas had said all that before. That's why he gets pissed when anyone says "Happy Days" was like AG. Happy Days let the kids be kids for 7 or 8 seasons. The HAPPY DAYS weren't forever and they never can be.

    Also, if it had been about cars, wouldn't every kid have a cool car. Out of the 4 lead characters only 2 had cool cars and one of those is parked most of the movie. There are no garage scenes or several street races. Although one street race is hinted at. The cruising scenes MAYBE take up 5 minutes of film.
     
    Last edited: Aug 22, 2013
  6. 1971BB427
    Joined: Mar 6, 2010
    Posts: 5,795

    1971BB427
    Member
    from Oregon

    I was only 12 in '62, but the cars that I thought were cool back then still are cool! But there are a lot of cars that I thought weren't cool that have grown on me over the years. Still wouldn't own those cars, but I've certainly changed my opinion of them.
     
  7. tfeverfred
    Joined: Nov 11, 2006
    Posts: 15,793

    tfeverfred
    Member

    I remember one day, my brother and I were riding our bikes to the store and we saw what I now know was a Stude Hawk. We laughed our asses off. He had mags and wide tires in the back and front runners. But in our ignorance, we thought the guy had tried to fix up a grannie car. The guy got pissed. We were REALLY laughing hard and pointing.

    I've seriously thought it would be cool to run into that guy and offer a sincere apology.
     
  8. Dooley
    Joined: May 29, 2002
    Posts: 2,659

    Dooley
    Member
    from Buffalo NY

    Don't forget that 62 was still part of the post WWII boom and in essence American's was "innocent"...this was before JFK, Veitnam, Race Riots, peace movement, british invasion etc...America changed drastically in the 60's
     
  9. tfeverfred
    Joined: Nov 11, 2006
    Posts: 15,793

    tfeverfred
    Member

    JFK and Vietnam were going on in '62. But the times were changing.
     
  10. We started our adventure in Vietnam around the end of Korea, called us advisors. I had a friend that was a frog man who got a career ending punctured lung in '57.

    The '60s was a time of radical changes in out culture and society. Those changes were being noticed in '62, not as strongly as say '67 but they were on the horizon and I would just about bet it was pretty scary to be class of '62.

    OK fellas that may be a little political, not my intention. report it if you must and let the mods sort it out.
     
  11. chromeazone
    Joined: Apr 23, 2009
    Posts: 231

    chromeazone

    I was 18 in the Navy in So Cal in '62, and I would say that movie is so classic is because it pretty much nails the youth scene of that era. Remember, it did not come out in'62, so everyone looked back to reminisce (?). Yea agree with most all the comments about 4 doors and the off brand cars. I never got my drivers license until after I got back from Westpac in '63. Best part about movie is it was before muscle car era, and what we called "The Checkbook Hotrodders".
    Yea, there was no denying a showroom car could kick most homebuilt rods, butts, but we were already seasoned greasers and our philosophy was Real Hot Rods are Built, not store brought !

    GREAT THREAD !

    "So, get some new rings on it, and slap it back in the hole before the next round !"
     
  12. I'm reporting your ass, Benno!
    All kidding aside, I also liked Hollywood Knights, but it was way less wholesome than AG. My favorite characters were the couple who were having an affair on Halloween. He-"You're already a treat". She-"You're already a trick". During a tryst in the backseat and they got hit by the police car, and he claimed his pants got knocked off. Classic.
     
  13. On the street mor doors were never cool unless they were full of girls, or beer.
     
  14. There are more Hot Rod's today than ever in history..The 50's and 60's wanked compared to today.. There was NO CAR SHOWS in the 50's and 60's where I live..today there is car shows every weekend or most weeknights have a cruise somewhere.
     
  15. There are more people today, not sure the ratio is as high today. In the Mnpls- DesMoines corridor I saw many more hot rods back in the 60's than in later years. I lived there 'til "87.
     
  16. chromeazone
    Joined: Apr 23, 2009
    Posts: 231

    chromeazone

    I would take issue with SUPERIORSLOTS view that there are more hot rods today then back in '50s & '60s. I was there and I think The Car Shows were on the street or in the drive in restaurants on the weekend. Every town had one. Gasoline was 25 cents a gallon (or less during gas wars). A new in the box Holley 4barrel was $125, or on sale. Getting a block bored was two dollars a hole, etc. Machine work and parts were cheap compared today. PLUS, all teenagers that wanted to work or move up, could work, and afford to work on their rides. Just about any car could be a hot rod if you wanted to do something to soup it up.
    It was a time before smog tests. Even in California the "smog test" was no where as technical as it is today. Shoving a rag down the engine breather pipe or steel wool up the exhaust pipe and you were A.O.K. and through the test !
    Also, consider this, the "kids" were baby boomers, the biggest percentage of young people. Now I have to look around to find someone under 25 who cares about a car much less a "hot rod". Youngsters now like tuner cars, jacked up 4X4s, and electronics/video games. Everyone I see driving a '50's - '60's car (or earlier) is a geezer as my self (gray hair).

    AND, there was NO RADAR !! Cops had to chase you to get a speed! Lots of street racing and once you got past Barstow, it was pedal to the metal ! And in Nevada "Resume Safe Speed" once you got through town!

    As I remarked in earlier post, I LOVE THIS THREAD ! We can all chime in and offer a point of view with out any one getting torqued off. I'll standby for a rebuttal.....

    (No denying OHIO was home for the Gassers - Ohio George for one!)
     
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2013
  17. 1963: $450...My first car bought with my own money: 265, PG later changed out to 3-spd:

    [​IMG]

    Traveled the Hot Shoppes and Topps drive-in circuit in D.C./Bethesda, Md. area where anything that had a cam, headers and tach on the dash was a start to being a cool car.

    But more often than not, the cars were cool because the characters driving them were cool. I had a HS classmate who was one of the coolest characters ever, and he drove a clapped-out '48 Chevy 4 door. That car was cool because he was.

    1967-1968
    Yes indeedee, a family wagon could be cool:

    [​IMG]

    327, 2-4 WCFB's, 4 speed, 4:11 posi, chrome reversed rims, hedmans, black rolled and pleated interior, slappers....I built this for my younger brother. Another case of the car being cool because its driver was cool, not the reverse: my brother was a football playin' mean as hell nose guard on a very good D.C. team.

    paul
     
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2013
  18. ANDEREGG TRIBUTE
    Joined: Jan 1, 2008
    Posts: 1,367

    ANDEREGG TRIBUTE
    Member
    from Bordertown

    Im paraphrasing here and hope i dont butcher the quote too much.....
    "I wanted to document the teen mating ritual of the time, and how it revolved around cars and cruising in America, especially where I grew up (Modesto)" "How can you have a HOT ROD MOVIE without a drag race?"
    George Lucas (director's commentary)


    To this car guy (yours truly) its a car movie...
     
  19. tfeverfred
    Joined: Nov 11, 2006
    Posts: 15,793

    tfeverfred
    Member

    That's all true, but what was minimum wage? .50 an hour? A NEW house was... $20,000, maybe? Back in '62 that new Holley, probably took a bit of saving to get.

    Revolved around and centered on are two different things. "Sands of Iwo Jima" isn't about South Pacific travel destinations, but the film revolves around that island, yet centers on the Marines who fought there. IMO of course.

    "Real Hot Rods are Built, not store brought !" Never heard or read that other than now and that may have been true in some small circles, but according to the magazines of the time period, the near death of hot rodding old cars was caused by the majority of hot rodders looking for a better, easier way to go fast. What we're doing or attempting now, is nostalgia. In other words, the guys who REALLY love JUST speed are thinking turbos, EFI and computers and carbon fiber bodies. That's the evolution of SPEED, not nostalgia. I love old cars and hot rods, but I recognize their place in the grand scheme of things. I like to go fast, but if I LOVED it, I wouldn't be playing with a T Bucket. I'd be trying to hop up a new Camaro or dreaming about buying a new Vette.

    It's all good and the love and passion of AG is forever apparent. All view points are meaningful to the viewer, that's what a successful director does. The fact we're discussing it so many years later, proves it's worth. Not only as a film, but a perspective of days gone by. It doesn't matter when you were born, we all remember hanging out with friends and dealing with relationships of our youth. That's what this film is about. Not it's authenticity or correctness of the time it's portraying. Perhaps, the biggest thing to get from it is, hold on to and enjoy your youth, it won't last forever. And hopefully, when you grow up and look back, it'll make you smile and remember when things seemed complicated, but were actually really simple.
     
  20. tfeverfred
    Joined: Nov 11, 2006
    Posts: 15,793

    tfeverfred
    Member

    1967-1968
    Yes indeedee, a family wagon could be cool:

    [​IMG]

    327, 2-4 WCFB's, 4 speed, 4:11 posi, chrome reversed rims, hedmans, black rolled and pleated interior, slappers....I built this for my younger brother. Another case of the car being cool because its driver was cool, not the reverse: my brother was a football playin' mean as hell nose guard on a very good D.C. team.

    paul[/QUOTE]

    That's a bad ass wagon, but where I grew up in Houston, it would have been just an old wagon. My friends and I would have loved it, but that's about it. A lot of cool cars got crushed because of crap like that. Folks, none car folks, just don't see things like we do. I remember wanting my dad to finish hot rodding his '66 Chevy II wagon and everyone thought we were odd balls.:( Go figure.
     
  21. jcmarz
    Joined: Jan 10, 2010
    Posts: 4,636

    jcmarz
    Member
    from Chino, Ca

    The average minimum wage in 1962 was about $1.25 (about $9.00 in 2013). Average cost of a new home was about $15,000.00 (about 115,000.00 in 2013).
     
  22. JeffB2
    Joined: Dec 18, 2006
    Posts: 8,431

    JeffB2
    Member
    from Phoenix,AZ

    Having grown up in that generation a lot of Dad's were not real keen on having their daughters date guys with station wagons or Nash Ramblers with fold-down "bedroom" seats.;)
     
  23. ANDEREGG TRIBUTE
    Joined: Jan 1, 2008
    Posts: 1,367

    ANDEREGG TRIBUTE
    Member
    from Bordertown

    Technically they were "airline reclining seats", but I like your version better, and who knows, maybe if they wouldve called them that, Rambler would still be around....LOL:D
     
  24. OldColt
    Joined: Apr 7, 2013
    Posts: 504

    OldColt
    Member

    The early 50's were much like the late 40's.
    The early 60's were much like the late 50's.
    The early 70's were much like the late 60's.
    It seems to me what many call the 50's era would best describe about 1955-1964. What many call the 60's era would best describe about 1965-1974.
    That's the way I remember it anyway.

    --- Steve ---
     
  25. Blue Moon Garage
    Joined: Mar 1, 2009
    Posts: 282

    Blue Moon Garage
    Member

    Hey Chromeazone, I went to Westpac in 63. What ship?
     
  26. falcongeorge
    Joined: Aug 26, 2010
    Posts: 18,341

    falcongeorge
    Member
    from BC

    Or adding a modded gen III and a set of M/T drag radials to your T bucket...:D
     
  27. tfeverfred
    Joined: Nov 11, 2006
    Posts: 15,793

    tfeverfred
    Member

    It's all about money, man.:D
     
  28. one2roc
    Joined: Oct 1, 2010
    Posts: 77

    one2roc
    Member

    Hum.... I have to agree with you on this one. It never really occured to me but you're absolutely on point with this one.
     
  29. Babyburr
    Joined: Oct 3, 2009
    Posts: 29

    Babyburr
    Member
    from Hurst, TX

    I was 13 years old and driving around in the country in a 1949 Chevy pick up. Sure wish I still had that truck.
     
  30. Clik
    Joined: Jul 1, 2009
    Posts: 1,864

    Clik
    Member

    And if you were in a rural area you were twenty years behind times. Up here in Appalchia there's a guy with a balding DA, spot lights, fender skirts, twin antennas with coon tails that has been circling the Dairy Queen in his 54 Ford since he got back from Korea.

     

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