There’s never a bad time of year to binge classic movies. Each film in this collection has a special place in history for bringing cars to the big screen for us as an audience to appreciate.

Smokey and the Bandit (1977)

Who could forget Burt Reynolds behind the wheel of that black Pontiac Firebird, fishtailing down the highway in pursuit of the Bandit? It’s not only a great car movie, it’s a great sports car movie.

Mad Max (1979)

The 2015 reboot of this movie was pretty cool, but nothing beats the original version of this post-apocalyptic adventure starring Mel Gibson and an awesome modified Ford Falcon. No one crosses Max and gets away with it. It’s perfect training for driving in New York City. 

Gone in 60 Seconds (2000)

A retired car thief must get back in the game and steal 50 cars in one night to save the life of his brother. That’s the plot of this movie, but it’d be equally accurate to say it is: cars, cars, cars, and a sprinkle of “acting” by Nicholas Cage.

Dumb and Dumber (1994) 

From the incredibly epic to the incredibly stupid, this movie definitely wins an honorable mention for… uniqueness. What car owner wouldn’t want to get behind the wheel of a truck remodeled to look like a giant, shaggy dog? From singing in the Shaggin’ Wagon to riding a tiny moped through the Rockies covered in snot, it’s hard not to watch the hijinks of Harry Dunne and Lloyd Christmas without busting a gut laughing.

Thelma and Louise (1991)

Since it first came out in 1991, few things exemplified freedom quite like the iconic 1966 Thunderbird in Thelma and Louise. To set the scene: Thelma and Louise sit behind the wheel of a dusty blue car on a desert road. The cops are right on their tail when the two women link hands and put the pedal to the metal. For those with a heart that yearns for the open road, this is truly a movie not to be missed. 

National Lampoon’s Vacation (1983)

The Griswolds, a typical American family, set out on a road trip in their station wagon to visit a popular amusement park called Wally World. Along the way, they suffer the antics of crazy cousin Eddie, their cranky old Aunt Edna, and a ton of other hilarious indignities. This is mandatory viewing for anyone who’s ever taken a family road trip— especially if you hate station wagons. 

Back to the Future (1985)

This is just an all around great movie that fits into a ton of different categories. Marty McFly’s adventure through time in a plutonium-fueled oh-so-80s Delorean is funny, exciting and heartwarming all at once. It’s one of the few movies you can watch in any mood and walk away smiling.

The Fast and the Furious (2001)

It may have come technically late for this list with a release in 2001, but it’s still an important turn-of-the-century car movie that deserves a place here. Any car lover or fan of breathtaking stunts and high-octane fun will love watching Paul Walker and his crew tear up the streets. This movie is a must for those who feel the need for speed. 

The Blues Brothers (1980)

In The Blues Brothers, Jake springs his brother Elwood out of jail and the two go on a road trip of historic proportions in the Bluesmobile, a beat up old 1974 Dodge Monaco. For added excitement, this movie also features a car crash which causes the destruction of 103 police cars over the course of five minutes. It is absolutely a must-see for those who enjoy the gleeful destruction of government property.With an amazing blues soundtrack to go along with it, how could you not?

Of course, we can’t mention every great car movie of the 20th century in one list. If we missed one of your favorites, feel free to leave us a comment below.