Review: Dirty Mary Crazy Larry (1974)


The movie that partially inspired Quentin Tarantino’s Death Proof, and not surprisingly it is much better than what it inspired!

Written By: Leigh Chapman & Antonio Santean
Directed By: John Hough

If you are looking for a movie with great depth or something to say then you need look elsewhere. Dirty Mary Crazy Larry doesn’t have anything important to say, about anything. It is a simple and to the point testosterone fest. Cars go fast, characters say plenty of meaningless bunk and there are crashes galore.

Dirty Mary Crazy Larry is very effective as a pure testosterone action flick. Any time a chase is in effect the camera does a great job of capturing it and making it very suspenseful, even if we couldn’t give one lick about any of these characters. Dirty Mary Crazy Larry isn’t a character film, it is a film about cars going fast and crashing violently. I believe it accomplished the action scenes with the right amount of energy and intensity. It ends up with an oddly compelling quality about it and provides plenty of cool moments, in particular the bridge jump sequence.

The movie does have a tendency to want to slow down and provide small character moments, character moments that are completely unnecessary. We are never given any reason to care about these characters and when the film tires to make us care it grinds to a halt. Just get in your car and keep going fast mates, the world will be a better place for it.

The other big problem I had with Dirty Mary Crazy Larry was the ending. The type of movie that Dirty Mary Crazy Larry is screams out for a good ending, one where the anti-heroes either get away or go down in a blaze of glory at the hands of the cops. This isn’t convention, it’s simply the ending that this type of movie calls out for. Instead we are given an out of nowhere crash that leaves the three anti-heroes dead and the audience muttering, “that sucked.”

The short and sweet on Dirty Mary Crazy Larry is that there are cars, car crashes, well filmed action scenes and the overall film is a lot of fun. If your movies must have some sort of substance then Dirty Mary Crazy Larry isn’t for you, but if you are able to every once in a while sit back and enjoy fast cars and a somewhat annoying woman give Dirty Mary Crazy Larry a shot.




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