Hooniverse Asks- What SciFi Movie Got Future Cars Right?

You brade-runner

It’s a funny thing about the future when it comes to movies, and that is that films that venture to show us what is coming next are the ones most likely to get left in the past. That’s especially so when it comes to showing future cars on film and TV. Most often it’s far to expensive to populate a future street with an era to come’s latest models, and that’s why a lot of movies typically use current – or worse a crap of old cars gussied up – as the next big thing. As a car nut that’s usually pretty cringe worthy. 

Some films have the vision and budget to do their future cars right – Minority Report being particularly bold in showing not just crazy new modes of wall climbing personal transportation, but also a rousing fight scene set in a car, as it was being built. On the other end of the Hollywood future car spectrum was this steaming pile called In Time, which populated its future streets with nothing but old Lincolns and Mopar ponies- all painted matte black.

That’s a couple of flicks that either got it really cool or really dumb, but has there ever been a future-looking movie that has really just nailed it when it comes to future cars? Lots have shown as-yet unavailable automotive technologies – driverless cars, in-car TVs, etc, what movie has best predicted these advancements? Which one has gotten future cars and their gadgets the closest?

Image: [ScrapeTV]

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38 responses to “Hooniverse Asks- What SciFi Movie Got Future Cars Right?”

  1. muthalovin Avatar

    Fifth Element. Hopefully.
    <img src="http://24.media.tumblr.com/tumblr_lgmu24MfFS1qbyfvlo1_500.png"&gt;
    "Negative, I am a meat popsicle."

  2. Vavon Avatar

    Retro is totally Back in to the Future!
    <img src="http://24.media.tumblr.com/tumblr_mczbwb5hK91r5hj8co1_500.jpg&quot; width="600/">

  3. DemonXanth Avatar

    Sadly, Demolition Man. We'll always be longing for the 442, but most people will opt for the self driving cars that you can't control at all.
    <img src="http://dlstatic.speedtv.com/imageserve/00z8bUx8RCfvG/575×459.jpg&quot; width=400>

  4. Devin Avatar

    Looper did a neat thing where it's all cars that are retro-fitted with an alternative fuel setup, so it sets up the world as being kind of bleak and poor just by forcing people to drive solar-powered Daewoos.
    Though I hope that the actual future isn't quite as miserable.

    1. Vavon Avatar

      On the other hand his Classic MX-5 (Miata) was really cool!
      <img src="http://www.imcdb.org/i494246.jpg&quot; width=600>

      1. Jeff Glucker Avatar
        Jeff Glucker

        official… I need to go see Looper.

        1. Vavon Avatar

          Yes! It's totally worth it.

          1. JayP2112 Avatar

            Now in the Redbox.

          2. Vavon Avatar

            What does that mean???

          3. danleym Avatar

            I'm gonna guess that France doesn't have Redbox. They're essentially DVD Rental vending machines. They're also absolutely everywhere in the US. http://www.redbox.com

          4. Vavon Avatar

            Ah! You mean a Video Futur… Thanks!
            <img src="http://www.metropolitaine.fr/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/videofutur.jpg&quot; width=500>

      2. Devin Avatar

        It's neat that for people who show off their money through their vehicle, it's all Miatas and hoverbikes. I'm not sure which I'd want more.

    2. JayP2112 Avatar

      I was very fortunate to see Syd Mead's presentation at SIGGRAPH in LA. He discussed Blade Runner and how budget constraints limited the Spinners they had to build. That meant the rest of the cars were refitted with "technology" to make them viable for the movie and in context. It was also the basis for the rest of the technology in the movie- old updated to to meet the needs of the future. The result made it a really timeless movie.
      I ponied up and ordered the 30th Anniversary Blade Runner Bluray last night. I had the Deckard Briefcase DVD and Bluray but left it somewhere which made the justification buy the new Anniversary Ed.

  5. BЯдΖǐL-ЯЄРΘЯΤЄЯ Avatar

    The "I Robot Audi " reminds sufficient the R8, though I would love to see some spherical wheels on the R8
    <img src="http://nice-cool-pics.com/data/media/6/audi_rsq_in__i__robot__movie__2035.jpg&quot; width="600">

    1. danleym Avatar

      I was going to say this, but more because of the fact that the car was self driving and wouldn't even let Will Smith (don't remember the character's name) to take control at one point. I can see the day happening when people who actually want to drive their cars are seen as strange and weird.

  6. jjd241 Avatar

    This guy…
    <img src="http://i.imgur.com/MX8Be.jpg&quot; alt="" title="Hosted by imgur.com" width=400">
    drove this…
    <img src="http://i.imgur.com/aj26i.jpg&quot; alt="" title="Hosted by imgur.com" width=400">

    1. Alvai Avatar

      My first thought when I heard the question….Woody Allen finds a VW

  7. jonathan Avatar

    The Saab EV-1 concept car from 1985 made an appearance in Back to the Future Part II. Unlike a lot of the more cartoonish cars used in the film (like the yellow Citroen DS above) it's not too far off in appearance from what we're driving now (other than having way too much glass in the greenhouse).
    <img src="http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/c/c3/Saab_EV-1.jpg&quot; width="600">

  8. JayP2112 Avatar

    The future is close than you think.
    <img src="http://www.imcdb.org/i004112.jpg&quot; width="600">

    1. Zach Avatar

      Right movie, wrong car:
      <img src="http://www.ford-taurus.org/taurusinfo/Specials/RoboCopMovie/RoboCop3.jpg&quot; alt="Smiley face" width="600">

      1. jonathan Avatar

        It's funny how in the late '80s/early '90s the first-gen Taurus was the go to "future car" in movies and TV shows. Seeing the pic made me think of a made for TV movie I saw in the early '90s starring Craig T. Nelson, I looked it up on imdb, it's called "The Fire Next Time," from 1993:
        "2017: The greenhouse effect and global warming take their toll as droughts, floods, and hurricanes wreak mass destruction in a world gone mad, one family struggles to survive against all odds… "
        The only thing I remember about the movie (other than Craig T. Nelson starring in it) was that everyone seemed to drive first generation Ford Tauruses.

      2. Jay Avatar

        The first-gen Taurus with matte paint was my first reaction when I saw this post, and I totally knew somebody would have posted this already : )
        By the way, I was at an antique shop a few days ago that had a ton of movie props, one of them was a gun used in Robocop 3 by the various police (appears very similar to the one pictured here). I had considered myself a fairly knowledgeable person regarding Robocop trivia, but I had no idea they used specially designed gun props in the three films.

    2. C³-Cool Cadillac Cat Avatar
      C³-Cool Cadillac Cat

      Exactly my first thought. Well-done!
      Oversize, overweight, oversucky.

  9. Jeff Glucker Avatar
    Jeff Glucker

    Perhaps Gattaca was on to something
    <img src="http://www.theavanti.net/media/tunnel.jpg"&gt;

    1. Peter Tanshanomi Avatar
      Peter Tanshanomi

      I'll do the fascist dystopia thing if I can haz Messerschmitt.
      <img src="http://pics.imcdb.org/0is46/brazil03messerschmittkr1754ka8.4170.jpg&quot; width="640">>

      1. mr. mzs zsm msz esq Avatar
        mr. mzs zsm msz esq

        <img src="http://www.imcdb.org/i075496.jpg&quot; width="600"> Not a bad line of thinking… <img src="http://www.imcdb.org/i070486.jpg&quot; width="600">

        1. dr zero Avatar
          dr zero

          Children of Men?

          1. mr. mzs zsm msz esq Avatar
            mr. mzs zsm msz esq

            Yes, the images are links for more.

      2. dr zero Avatar
        dr zero

        Could I please have one of these, driver included?
        <img src="http://www.moviecars.it/images/auto/citroen_DS_gattaca_big3.jpg"&gt;

    2. Jay Avatar

      Back in college an acquaintance of mine from LA told me his dad's Avanti was one of the cars used in the filming of Gattaca. I think they used a bunch of them throughout the film for various shots… but this could very well be it.

  10. Vavon Avatar

    I also thought that the futuristic cars in Demolition Man were perfect.
    <img src="http://i.imgur.com/5Llth.png"&gt;

    1. Devin Avatar

      GM just let them go whole hog in their prototype room, which was nice of them. I've always found the Ultralite a weird car though, all this effort to be super light and then make the doors entirely glass.

  11. danleym Avatar

    Surprised I'm the first one to throw out Mad Max. See it all depends on what kind of future we're talking about- everyone else is going for the improved technology angle, I'll go for the collapse of society and what we have is anything we can manage to keep running.
    <img src="http://oversteer.co.nz/wp-content/uploads/2012/03/Mad-Max-Pursuit-Special.jpg"&gt;

    1. jjd241 Avatar

      How timely! Now I wish I could change my HCOTY vote!

  12. Tomsk Avatar

    THX 1138. Because late-'60s sports prototypes in drag.
    <img src="http://www.imcdb.org/i115576.jpg&quot; width="500">

    1. OA5599 Avatar

      It also predicted the cars of the past.
      <img src="http://www.americangraffiti.net/images/cars_32_Deuce.jpg&quot; width=500>