What's your favorite car rolling over stunt?
May 10, 2012 9:49 AM   Subscribe

Car rolling over filter: I'm looking for movies wherein a car rolls in a spectacular (potentially test-able) way. Or for an interesting or counter-intuitive reason. Think along the lines of the car flip on the way down Fillmore in Jade. Or the Bond/Casino Royale flip of the McClaren. Hopefully even more spectacular.
posted by asavage to Media & Arts (56 answers total) 22 users marked this as a favorite
Thelma and Louise?

In addition to the ending, I think a cop car or two also rolls over at some point...
posted by Melismata at 9:54 AM on May 10, 2012

I'm sure you can find many examples in the car chases in Blue Brothers.
posted by Aizkolari at 9:55 AM on May 10, 2012

When I think cars rolling, I think "Blues Brothers."

Also, there's probably a good roll or two from the Smokey & the Bandit movies.

Or the truck flip from the Dark Knight.
posted by entropicamericana at 9:57 AM on May 10, 2012 [2 favorites]

In the final race of Cars, the King crashes in a "blowover" inspired by a real event.
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 9:59 AM on May 10, 2012

Isn't there a semi that rolls in Death Race with Jason Statham? Also, I think the Transformers movies had some. Or maybe I'm just thinking of all the explosions in those movies.
posted by onhazier at 10:00 AM on May 10, 2012

There's a great 360-degree roll while jumping in The Man with the Golden Gun: clip, explanation.
posted by theatro at 10:01 AM on May 10, 2012 [2 favorites]

"The Dark Knight" has a tractor trailer flipping over back-to-front (rather than rolling).

I think this gag was first pulled off in "Lawrence of Arabia", though, which has military vehicles flipping end-over-end.
posted by DWRoelands at 10:01 AM on May 10, 2012 [1 favorite]

Pretty sure Indiana Jones and the Lost Crusade has a couple of great bits with the cars/tanks.

Also, in Casino Royale, It's an Aston-Martin DBS...
posted by pupdog at 10:06 AM on May 10, 2012

In The Master Touch (1972) during the course of a extensive car chase a car rolls off the side of car carrier and lands upside down on top of another car (the bottom car then continues to drive with the upside down car on top of it).
posted by RichardP at 10:10 AM on May 10, 2012

...the rollover is at about 4 minutes into the clip to which I linked, if you don't want to watch the entire car chase.
posted by RichardP at 10:14 AM on May 10, 2012

[to the tune of "Rawhide"]
Ronin Ronin Ronin, check the movie Ronin, see the movie Ronin, Ronin!

Also: do any cars flip in Vanishing Point (the original)?
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 10:18 AM on May 10, 2012 [3 favorites]

Coming in to say Ronin. Excellent car flips. Pretty realistic.
posted by saradarlin at 10:27 AM on May 10, 2012 [1 favorite]

"Body of Lies" (Ridley Scott) about Chapter Three. Friendly fire from helicopter. We are inside the car.
posted by effluvia at 10:27 AM on May 10, 2012

There's a hilarious part in Transporter 2 (I know, I know) in which Statham deliberately flips his car in order for the hook of a crane to snag a bomb off of the bottom of it. (I may be getting a detail or two wrong, as I haven't seen it since it was in theaters.)
posted by chowflap at 10:31 AM on May 10, 2012 [3 favorites]

I was wondering if you could re-enact bullitt with period cars, and have anything but a flaming wreck left when you were done- plus, it's local.
posted by jenkinsEar at 10:37 AM on May 10, 2012 [3 favorites]

There is an awesome car spinning stunt in Gumball Rally that would be fun to recreate/test. Getting max revolutions, or trying to calculate them before the event, would be sciencey. Spoiler: it was done with laterally mounted rockets. Piqued your interest?
posted by lothar at 10:47 AM on May 10, 2012

Given your interest in testing, you might enjoy an episode of Mythbusters entitled "Crash and Burn: If at First You Don't Explode, Try Try Again" in which they try to replicate a spectacular movie car crash. There are clips all over YouTube that show parts of the episode where they send various cars over a cliff, but they tend to cut off the money crash shots, leading to this viewer's frustration. Instead, here's a satisfying clip about their efforts to replicate the KnightRider trick of driving Kit up a ramp into a moving semi.
posted by carmicha at 10:47 AM on May 10, 2012 [12 favorites]

wherein a car rolls in a spectacular (potentially test-able) way...
...the Bond/Casino Royale flip.

The car was too stable and could not get into that roll from the maneuver shown, they had to use a ramp and an air cannon to produce the effect. (Or at the very least, the Aston Martin marketing department required them to make a press release to this effect :-) )
posted by -harlequin- at 10:48 AM on May 10, 2012

Given your interest in testing, you might enjoy an episode of Mythbusters...

...Carmicha, did you notice who was asking this question?....
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 10:55 AM on May 10, 2012 [39 favorites]

Oh God, why...
posted by carmicha at 11:03 AM on May 10, 2012 [49 favorites]

This is not exactly what you asked for (and not really Mythbusters) but if you want a kind of crash that would be make interesting demo, you might want to look at Peter Dumbreck's flip in a Merc CLR from Le Mans (nobody was hurt in this crash).
posted by Urtylug at 11:04 AM on May 10, 2012

Has anyone broke the news to carmicha yet?

For me it was the car flip scene from Comando.
posted by The Violet Cypher at 11:17 AM on May 10, 2012

Oh shit.... There are a couple of great ones in "Wanted." One of the most interesting from a testable/unusual-cause angle is the one (seen toward the end of this trailer where Angelina Jolie sends a car into a high speed skid so that it impacts a curb directly side-on, which then catapults the car into the air (so that she can get over a roadblock and then land wheels down on the side of a mid-crash transport truck and drive away to safety).
posted by 256 at 11:19 AM on May 10, 2012 [1 favorite]

Seconding chowflap - there is a stupid awesome car flip in Transporter 2. I don't think ramps work that way.
posted by robocop is bleeding at 11:29 AM on May 10, 2012

Oh, actually it was a bus and much more ridiculous than the way I described it: here's a better clip.

And here is the other ridiculous car flip from the same movie with yet another very unlikely cause.
posted by 256 at 11:36 AM on May 10, 2012

There's a bit in Raiders of the Lost Arc where they tried to roll a truck but just miscalculated so it just ended up tipping on its side. They kept that version because it looked more realistic (and possibly did have the budget to try again)
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 11:55 AM on May 10, 2012

The Raiders scene was done (if memory serves) by blowing a telephone pole out the bottom of the truck at the appointed time.
posted by jquinby at 12:14 PM on May 10, 2012

Weren't there some cars that flipped in the highway chase scene in Matrix Revolutions?
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 12:21 PM on May 10, 2012

Strictly cars, or automobiles in general? There's the ambulance crash from Bringing out the Dead, which always struck me as wildly implausible given their speed and the weight of an ambulance (I'm no physicist, though).
posted by johnofjack at 12:53 PM on May 10, 2012

This Matrix Reloaded chase scene has several car rolls, but the two that best illustrate what I think you want are at ~3:05 and ~3:45 minutes in (the latter is absolutely outrageous; I'd bet money on MYTH BUSTED).
posted by misha at 12:54 PM on May 10, 2012

This Matrix Reloaded chase scene has several car rolls

IIRC that was filmed at Alameda Naval Air Station to begin with, which sets it up to be the ultimate in control-for-all-conditions Mythbusting Authenticity.
posted by theodolite at 12:56 PM on May 10, 2012 [1 favorite]

Oh, and both fit the "interesting or counter-intuitive reason" criteria!
posted by misha at 12:58 PM on May 10, 2012

The Raiders scene was done (if memory serves) by blowing a telephone pole out the bottom of the truck at the appointed time.

Dunno that it's a phone pole, but the piston is plainly visible in the shot.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 1:01 PM on May 10, 2012

(...I meant Matrix Reloaded... duh)
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 2:10 PM on May 10, 2012

I strongly second DWRoelands' suggestion of the Batman-induced flip of the semi in "The Dark Knight" -- it's beautifully complicated, seemingly ridiculous, and, based on Nolan's reputation, probably planned out pretty carefully.
posted by inkfish at 2:34 PM on May 10, 2012

Not a movie, but this clip of an SUV being flipped by an exploding manhole is pretty spectacular.
posted by hnnrs at 2:36 PM on May 10, 2012

Sometimes art is a pale imitation of life, as this spectacular roll from the 2011 Rally of Portugal shows. As for interesting of counter-intuitive reasons... It is a little counter-intuitive that Ken Block could attract so much by way of advertising dollars and still drive like a total chump.
posted by tim_in_oz at 2:54 PM on May 10, 2012 [1 favorite]

There is a barrel roll (by Charger) over another car (Supra) after a collision at the end of the fast and the furious. They must have ramped it but at least in this case the full cage doesn't detract from the effect because the Charger is a full blown drag car.
posted by Mitheral at 2:56 PM on May 10, 2012

In one episode of Top Gear, they wanted to set the world record for rollovers, so they stuck a cannon aimed at the ground on one side of the car to give it an extra kick.
posted by hellojed at 3:12 PM on May 10, 2012

It's been a while since I watched them, but I think the Bourne films are interesting and counter-intuitive for their frenetic car chases with a distinct lack of cars flipping over.
posted by hnnrs at 3:13 PM on May 10, 2012

In Terminator 3, there's a crane truck that hooks into roadworks & flips forward.
posted by Packed Lunch at 3:39 PM on May 10, 2012 [1 favorite]

Tucker -- although the one that rolled during the test-track scene wasn't really a Tucker, but one of the four replicas built for the movie.
posted by Rash at 4:09 PM on May 10, 2012

How about Bad Boys II when the villains throw the entire contents of a moving car hauler down the highway, followed by a boat?

I love that godawful movie so unironically.
posted by elizardbits at 4:12 PM on May 10, 2012

Salt is a carnival of wildly improbable plot, characters, and dialog, but it does include some spectacular vehicular mayhem. Check out 0:28 in this trailer.
posted by Multicellular Exothermic at 4:34 PM on May 10, 2012

Car rolling over filter

This is not really what you asked about, and they don't move, but the coolest car(s) rolling over I ever saw in real life was seven years ago in an art gallery..
posted by LeLiLo at 8:02 PM on May 10, 2012

Ronin! A film for which the term "collateral damage" might as well have been invented. Despite an extraordinarily charismatic cast and a screenplay by David Mamet, all I ever remember about this movie is the amazing driving, the car stunts, and the dozens of stuntmen throwing themselves out of harm's way. (Frankenheimer probably doesn't mind.)

At 0:51 in this clip, Robert DeNiro's character stands up in the sunroof and fires a rocket launcher based on a light anti-tank weaponinto the rear of a Mercedes, which flips over and skids in a glorious fireball. Don't you wonder whether that's possible, Adam? With all the flame and exploding and rockets? Aren't you just the least bit curious?

At 1:18 in this clip, a car carrier narrowly misses running into the lead car, and as just sort of a side note, its hard braking can't stop one of the cars from its top deck pancaking. I would like to know just how much force it takes to break whatever holds a car to a car carrier's deck, and whether there's any way that force would cause the car to flip over instead of just rolling forward and kind of sliding off undramatically. At 2:06, of course, a police car rolls in a tunnel and slides and there's lots of sexy evasive driving around its slithering, sparking form. But nothing mysterious there, so never mind that.

At 2:14 in the clip continuing that scene, a truck thinks about flipping but instead of coaaaaaasts along on two wheels for a bit and settles back down. At 2:27, there's another collateral flip. But the payoff starts around 3:01, when a gunshot flattens one tire on the lead car. The car flips into the air, and lands on its roof in the midst of a construction zone. As the lead car is sliding and sparking along, the chase car strikes it flank-to-flank and jostles it over the edge of the half-built flyover. The lead car rolls in the air, lands on its wheels, and flips again, ending up on its roof. Everyone in the car survives, an apparent testament to the BMW E34's safety rating. In fact, the bad guy literally walks away. Under fire, no less. I would definitely like to know how Buster would fare.

Whatever you end up doing, thanks for giving me impetus to go look at the Ronin Good Bits!
posted by gingerest at 8:08 PM on May 10, 2012 [3 favorites]

Any one of a million scenes in Mad Max or Mad Max 2 (or Road Warrior or whatever it's called over there).

Bonus points if someone eventually ends up chained to a car with a hacksaw, with flame and fuel nearby.
posted by malibustacey9999 at 8:36 PM on May 10, 2012 [1 favorite]

Not a movie, but this is one of the most spectacular roll-overs I've seen and it happened because two cars had a minor bump together on the start line, where the end of the exhaust of one hit the wheel of the other which damaged the valve on one of the tyres. A couple of minutes later, he turns into a corner at 300 km/h and discovers that he has a flat rear tyre. Certainly test-able, but only if you are insane. Not sure if you could reproduce it at a lower speed. If you're looking for something that actually happened, rather than an obviously staged stunt that a 2 year-old can see is fake, it might be a good example.
posted by dg at 8:47 PM on May 10, 2012

Holy cow, dg, and the driver just walked away from that, apparently unfazed. My respect for the safety engineering in those cars just went up another couple of notches.
posted by hattifattener at 10:21 PM on May 10, 2012

I would love to see someone try to roll a tanker, Terminator 2-style.
posted by Sibrax at 11:25 PM on May 10, 2012 [1 favorite]

"Hey Jake, Jake, I gotta pull over!"

Definitely The Blues Brothers.
posted by IvoShandor at 9:20 PM on May 11, 2012

It's not a movie, but I'm reasonably certain there's not a single episode of CHiPs that doesn't have a rollover every five minutes.

Also, there are a lot of those classic rear-enders that end up in the rear car hurtling over the front one and then rolling over. (Cue explosion.)
posted by Sys Rq at 2:05 PM on May 12, 2012

There's always this. Unfortunately, I don't know the title of the film.
posted by brundlefly at 12:29 PM on May 16, 2012

The very first air cannon rollover in the John Wayne movie McQ.

From Popular Science Hal Needham's Six Greatest Stunts

"In the 1974 action film McQ, starring John Wayne, legendary stunt coordinator Ronnie Rondell and Needham stage a spectacular car rollover on the beach. In those days, a ramp was used to pitch the cars into a rollover for movie stunts. But since this shot was planned for the flat and desolate beach, they couldn't hide a ramp with bushes or shrubs; it would look too odd. So Needham invented another way to flip cars: With a device later named the McQ Cannon.

"We built a cannon 16 inches in diameter with inch-and-a-half-thick walls—because I knew what was going to happen inside that cannon—and welded it to the back floorboard behind the driver's seat with the muzzle pointed toward the ground." The cannon was loaded with a 3-foot-long telephone pole and a black-powder charge. "The idea was to throw the car in a broadside skid and hit that cannon," he says, forcing the pole down and the car to rollover. "The crew prepared for a rehearsal of the stunt on a dry lakebed outside Los Angeles with a beat-up sedan and brought along five 4-ounce powder bombs. On the static test, they loaded in one of the charges. And the explosion only lifted the car up 6 inches. So for the real run they made the cannon more potent.

"I knew if we put two bombs in and it doesn't work, we'd only have two left, so we put them all in. The lesson I learned on this one: Powder squares itself in power." The crew pushed the junker car up to 55 mph and Needham threw the car into a skid. "When they hit the fire button it blew that car 30 feet up in the air and I was flying upside down and backward across the desert. The power of the cannon almost bent that car in half. I landed upside down when the car finished rolling—and I wasn't breathing." Needham managed to crawl out the back window of the car, received mouth-to-mouth from stuntmen Gary McLarty, and was carted off the to hospital. The doctor told Needham, "You have six broken ribs, a punctured lung, broken back." And Needham himself counted three teeth missing. Since Needham was in the hospital, he enlisted McLarty to perform the actual movie stunt (with a lot less explosives onboard) and he rolls the car several times, emerging from the wreckage unhurt. "
posted by bz at 2:24 PM on May 18, 2012

inkfish: "I strongly second DWRoelands' suggestion of the Batman-induced flip of the semi in "The Dark Knight" -- it's beautifully complicated, seemingly ridiculous, and, based on Nolan's reputation, probably planned out pretty carefully."

What's cooler is that they did it without CG, and actually flipped a @*$&ing truck in downtown Chicago.
posted by schmod at 7:07 AM on May 31, 2012 [1 favorite]

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