May 09

Movie Review: The Hot Rod Gang

The Hot Rod Gang is a fairly obscure movie from 1958 exemplifying a bit of a romanticized look back at hot rodding, rock n roll, and street racing in the area. Featuring John Ashley, Judy Fair, and Gene Vincent the movie is a somewhat typical bad guy street racing on run from the law movie.

the hot rod gang

Featuring bad acting, corny lines, some fairly stereotypical scenes of 1950s life on the surface The Hot Rod Gang is not a great movie. I’d compare it to the Fast and the Furious. It has all the same characteristics. It’s a been goofy, and you’ll laugh at some of it, but then there are the cars.

The cars are the star. 32 Fords, high boys, low boys, Chevy’s, and other extremely tastefully done hot rods. It’s a stark reminder for someone like me that cars like this are nothing new and that the hot rod scene has been going on since far before I was born, and will go on far after I’m gone. The experience for a car guy is amazing!

The movie opens with a street race. I high boy and low boy roadster face off against each other in some daring street activities and the visuals are stunning. The cars look amazing on the screen. The custom work is impeccable and worth the watch alone. As the scene goes on the sounds come up to the visual standards as the roar of the V8s are exhilaration.

Following the chase scene the racers are wanted by the cops however they head to their hide out where there friends are playing in a band. What follows is a bit of a cheesy 50s rock n roll scene but it fits the movie well. We get a peak into their shop and at more hot rod goodness. The rest of the movies follow this same path as we get several race scenes and some rock n roll.

As for the ending, well you will just have to watch that yourself. You can find the movie on the Amazon link above or stream it on Netflix. While it’s a bit corny at times it’s a must watch for car guys as it’s worth seeing and hearing the hot rods, including a George Barris car “Ala Cart” It’s definitely worth a watch on a rainy Sunday when you can’t get your real hot rod out.