Days of Thunder

Synopsis: Cole Trickle enters the high-pressure world of Nascar racing. He's a hot driver with a hot temper, and this attitude gets him into trouble not only with other drivers, but members of his own team as well.
Genre: Action, Drama, Sport
Director(s): Tony Scott
Production: Paramount Home Video
  Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 1 win & 1 nomination.
Rotten Tomatoes:
107 min

Welcome to the Daytona 500,

the Superbowl of motor racing.

Walking onto the grid

is two-time champion Rowdy Burns.

A contender from Pennsylvania,

Aldo Bennedetti.

Gentlemen, start your engines.

Number 43, Richard Petty,

spins to the inside of the track.

Richard Petty is out

of the Daytona 500.

Speaking of people out of the race,

remember Harry Hogge?

His driver, Buddy Bretherton, died

here last year in a fiery crash.

- You're enjoying the good life.

- Yeah.

I never minded spreading a little

fertilizer around now and then.

- How's the truck running?

- Good.

I want you to build me a car.

Everybody knows some car dealer

who can't afford a race team.

No driver will sign with you.

If they wreck one car, you can't

afford to build them another.

No car's going to win without

a driver ... not even mine.

If you built the car,

I'd get a damn driver.

What kind of driver are you going

to find after the season's started?

You can work with him. You can

build a driver like you build a car.

That hound is the best

coon dog I've ever seen.

- And l didn't teach him a thing.

- I've got somebody.

- Take a look at him.

- He doesn't sound like somebody.

Then take a look at nobody.

- Tim, l gave up racing.

- You didn't give up racing.

You quit to avoid an investigation

into Buddy's crash at Daytona.

I talked to NASCAR. lf you come back

there won't be an investigation.

- How did you sell them that deal?

- I'm a hell of a salesman.

Now that's a race car driver.

When's your driver due?

- Your guy runs those Indy types.

- Sprints, mainly.

Two championships, three all-star

wins, seven straight feature wins.

He's a real statistician.

Does he know anything about drivers?

- Harry, where's your driver from?

- Eagle Rock.

- Is that up around Wilkesboro?

- No. Glendale, California.

- He's a Yankee?

- Californians aren't Yankees.

- They're not really anything.

- You said it.

The shocks are right, we're

dialed in. Don't change a thing.

- Hey, you're looking pretty good.

- You're the one looking good.

It hasn't been easy, Harry,

but this b*tch is ready to run.

We appreciate you letting us

use the car, Rowdy.

l told you. Harry's got a new driver

and he needs a car for a few laps.

Harry Hogge asked us personally

as a favor.

Who is this driver?.

Tim tells me

you've been running open wheels.

Now you just want

to up and drive NASCAR?

- This is stock car racing.

- I've watched it on television.

- You've seen it on television?

- ESPN, the coverage is excellent.

This may not be the best time

for you to run this car.

- Is there some problem?

- No, sir.

You bend this b*tch,

and I'll tear your balls off.

Would you mind very much

holding on to this?

Didn't you hear what that man said?

- Hold on, we ought to talk.

- About how I'm going to run?

About how you've managed to live

so long. You ain't racing this car.

What's going on?

You said you'd look at him.

- I've looked at him.

- l paid $2,500 to use this track.

- Forget it. He needs a brand name.

- l know a driver when l see one.

- Harry, is this happening or what?

- Do us all a favor, Harry.

Let me drive.

l won't make a fool out of you.

That tunnel turn is real tricky.

Hot or cold, it's slick.

You'll slam into the wall

before you know it. So take it easy.

- I'm dropping the hammer.

- No, you're not.

- it's under Rowdy's time.

- He should've cracked up the car.

- That was fast.

- Yeah?

the pole in the last race here.

- You never drove a stock car?.

- No, sprints mainly.

- Buck Bretherton.

- Cole Trickle, nice to meet you.

You were one lucky son of a b*tch

in the tunnel turn.

lf you think it was luck,

let's do it again.

You run good.

Go get your own car

and we'll see how you do in a crowd.

- What's wrong with open wheels?

- l lost my ride.

After all those wins,

you were fired?

l lost my ride. I'd have quit

regardless. l wasn't going anywhere.

- Where do you want to go?

- Indianapolis.

To win in Indy I'd need a great car,

but stock cars are all the same.

There's nothing stock

about a stock car.

I'm not trying to insult you, but

stock cars are built to run equal.

- l won't be beaten by a car.

- Only by a driver.

You build me a car,

and I'll win Daytona next year.

I'm going to give you an engine

low to the ground.

An extra-big oil pan

that'll cut the wind underneath you.

That'll give you

I'll give you a fuel line

that'll hold an extra gallon of gas.

I'll shave half an inch off you

and shape you like a bullet.

When l get you primed,

painted and weighed ...

... you're going to be ready

to go out on that racetrack.

You're going to be perfect.

I'm going to pull

this rookie's chain.

- Cole, you're all over the track.

- He just slammed into me.

He didn't slam you or bump you.

He rubbed you. Rubbing is racing.

There goes the fender.

There goes the quarter panel.

While we're still under a caution,

go out and hit the pace car.

Hit the pace car?. What for?.

You hit every other damn thing

out there. l want you to be perfect.

You're too high.

How about that?

This side we don't have to fix.

l don't want you spoiled, Buck.

This is gonna hurt.

Did you see that guy?.

- I've got to pit.

- No, we're busy now.

- We're eating ice cream.

- Ice cream!

You can come in and get one,

but it wouldn't impress NASCAR.

You have enough trouble

riding around the track as it is.

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Robert Towne

Robert Towne (born Robert Bertram Schwartz; November 23, 1934) is an American screenwriter, producer, director and actor. He was part of the New Hollywood wave of filmmaking. His most notable work was his Academy Award-winning original screenplay for Roman Polanski's Chinatown (1974), which is widely considered one of the greatest movie screenplays ever written. He also wrote its sequel The Two Jakes in 1990, and wrote the Hal Ashby comedy-dramas The Last Detail (1973), and Shampoo (1975), as well as the first two Mission Impossible films (1996, 2000). more…

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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