July 1, 1983
STROKER ACE is one of the many Burt Reynolds movies directed by stunt legend Hal Needham. Before this he’d been second unit director for the car chase in THE LONGEST YARD and then directed Burt in SMOKEY AND THE BANDIT, HOOPER, SMOKEY AND THE BANDIT II and THE CANNONBALL RUN. This one’s not nearly as good as Hooper, but at least not as broad as CANNONBALL.
Burt (in his followup to BEST FRIENDS) stars as Stroker Ace, undisputed regional champion of smarmy womanizing, also a legendary NASCAR driver. There’s a prologue where he’s a little kid and seems to gain his love of driving fast by experiencing a police chase while getting a ride home from his friend’s dad, who’s a moonshiner. The kid they have playing young Stroker is really good, chewing gum and repeatedly checking his hair in the rear view mirror. (read the rest of this shit…)