Smokey and the Bandit II

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Smokey and the Bandit II
Smokey and the bandit ii poster.jpg
Theatrical poster
Directed by Hal Needham
Produced by Mort Engelberg
Written by Michael Kane
Jerry Belson
Brock Yates
Starring Burt Reynolds
Sally Field
Jackie Gleason
Music by Snuff Garrett
Cinematography Michael Butler
Edited by Donn Cambern
William Gordean
Production
  company
Rastar
Distributed by Universal Pictures
Release date(s)
  • August 15, 1980 (1980-08-15)
Running time 100 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Budget $17 million[1]
Box office $66,132,626[2]

Smokey and the Bandit II is a 1980 comedy film released on August 15, 1980 in the United States. It is the sequel to the 1977 film Smokey and the Bandit. The film stars Burt Reynolds, Sally Field, Jerry Reed, Jackie Gleason, and Dom DeLuise. Like the first film, it was directed by Hal Needham.

The film was originally released in the United Kingdom, New Zealand, Australia and several other, mainly Commonwealth countries as Smokey and the Bandit Ride Again. Early video releases and TV broadcasts also used this title, but in more recent years have reverted to the original U.S. title. It was followed by a sequel three years later, Smokey and the Bandit Part 3, in which Reynolds appeared only in a brief cameo appearance, and Sally Field was absent completely.

The plot centers on Bo "Bandit" Darville (Burt Reynolds), and Cledus "Snowman" Snow (Jerry Reed), transporting an elephant to the GOP National Convention with Sheriff Buford T. Justice, played by Jackie Gleason, in hot pursuit once again.

Plot[edit]

Big Enos Burdett (Pat McCormick) is running for Governor of Texas against another candidate, John Coen (David Huddleston). After a figurative and literal "mudslinging" between the two, they are both confronted by the outgoing governor and given a thorough tongue-lashing. As Burdett is leaving the office he overhears the governor yelling at an assistant to take responsibility for transporting a crate of unknown content from Miami to the Republican Party convention in Dallas. Burdett then schemes to pick up the crate and deliver it to the convention. He enlists the help of Bandit (Burt Reynolds) and Cledus (Jerry Reed) to carry out the task.

Cledus then attempts to convince the Bandit to "do it one last time." Unfortunately, in the time since their previous challenge, the Bandit has split from his love interest Carrie aka "Frog" (Sally Field) and become an alcoholic. The Bandit is said to be "the only man in the world to drink up a Trans Am". Cledus seeks the help of Frog to encourage the Bandit to sober up and regain his fitness, since Big Enos has raised the stakes of the game to $400,000, equal to $1,144,911 today. Frog abandons her second attempt at wedding Buford T. Justice's (Jackie Gleason) son Junior (Mike Henry) to help. She is initially persuaded more by the money than her love for Bandit. She buys him a 1980 Turbo Trans Am named "Son of Trigger", powered by the Turbo 301, by trading in Junior's car.

The middle sections of the film feature a race across the United States as the trio once again tries to outrun and outwit Justice and Junior. The team discovers that their cargo is in quarantine for three weeks, and they need to get it to Dallas in three days. When they break into the quarantine area to steal the crate, the mysterious cargo turns out to be an elephant (the mascot of the Republican Party) whom they name Charlotte after Snowman remarked that she reminded him of his Aunt Charlotte and smelled like her, too. When Cledus opens the crate containing the elephant, Charlotte races out, nearly trampling Frog. The Bandit saves the day by doing a backflip onto the elephant's back and riding the elephant out of the quarantine shed. Noticing a splinter was stuck in her foot, the Bandit removes it, and the elephant takes a shine to Bandit. On their way to Dallas, Cledus fears Charlotte is in poor health. They find an Italian gynecologist (Dom DeLuise) in the back of an ambulance stopped at the same gas station as they are. When the gynecologist discovers it is an elephant he has to look at, he freaks out and nearly runs away. As the doctor refuses to help them, he sees his driver speeding away in the ambulance, leaving him stranded. After the Bandit and Cledus bribe him with large amounts of money, he gives in and agrees to ride in the truck with the elephant and examine her. Charlotte is later discovered to be pregnant.

As they try to make Burdett's deadline, the doctor pleads with the Bandit for some time off the road so Charlotte can rest off of her feet. He reluctantly gives in twice, the first time wrapped up by Charlotte, the second time agrees on his own, Frog citing Bandit's desire to regain his lost fame of the past. She grows closer to him as she did in the past film. While at a restaurant, she sees him scribbling on a napkin a picture of Charlotte cradled by suspended netting in order to keep her off of her feet. She becomes furious and leaves. The Bandit follows and she says he does not care about the elephant and when he likes himself again would she then consider seeing him again.

He later makes his drawing a reality, in a near drunken stupor. The doctor agrees the idea will work and agrees to press on. Unable to stop the Bandit and Cledus, Justice enlists the help of his two brothers, Reginald Van Justice (a Mountie loosely based on Gleason's earlier "Reginald Van Gleason" character) from Quebec, and Gaylord Justice, from another part of Texas (both played by Gleason). Justice lures the Bandit into a valley, with a line of Mounties (in red police cars) on one hill side, Texas Rangers, in white cars, on the other. Bandit orders Cledus to continue delivering Charlotte to Dallas. Cledus later returns, with a convoy of trucks to help destroy all of the police cars. Charlotte and the doctor watch the action from afar. After the mass destruction of police cars, only Buford, Gaylord, and Reginald come out relatively unscathed. Bandit and Cledus escape the valley by driving across a bridge of tractor trailers. As the Justices follow, a trailer pulls out resulting in their cars falling down and being destroyed. However, Buford's car is still operable, though folded up in the middle and missing its doors and roof. Justice and Junior are cut off by a farm tractor, and they drive off the road, hitting an embankment by a pond, throwing Junior into the pond. When asked what he was thinking about, Buford simply says, "Retiring."

Eventually, Bandit informs Frog he likes himself again, and that he did not want to spend the rest of his life without her. When she asks about Burdett's bet, he informs her he blew it, and said they could still get there nonetheless (though late). He shows her Charlotte and her baby in circus-like chariots. Frog is overjoyed. Bandit asks Charlotte if it is fine to marry Frog, to which Charlotte responds loudly. They drive away with Charlotte and her baby in tow, with Buford pursuing them in a bus.

Cast[edit]

Actor Role
Burt Reynolds Bo "Bandit" Darville
Jackie Gleason Sheriff Buford T. Justice / Gaylord Justice / Reginald Van Justice
Jerry Reed Cledus "Snowman" Snow
Dom DeLuise Dr. Frederico "Doc" Carlucci
Sally Field Carrie/"Frog"
Paul Williams Little Enos Burdette
Pat McCormick Big Enos Burdette
David Huddleston John Coen
Mike Henry Junior Justice
John Anderson Governor
Brenda Lee Nice Lady
Phil Balsley Himself (a member of The Statler Brothers)
Lew DeWitt Himself (a member of The Statler Brothers)
Don Reid Himself (a member of The Statler Brothers)
Harold Reid Himself (a member of The Statler Brothers)
Joe Greene Himself (as "Mean Joe" Greene)
Mel Tillis Fairground Owner
Joe Klecko Himself
Don Williams Himself
Terry Bradshaw Himself
Jeffrey Bryan King Football Player
Nancy Lenehan Ramona
John Megna P.T.
Dudley Remus Everglades Gas Station Attendant
Jerry Lester Warehouse Guard
Hal Carter Gas Station Attendant
Rick Allen Safari Park Attendant
Chuck Yeager Party Guest
Patrick Moody Ambulance Driver
John Robert Nicholson Patient
Anthony T. Townes As Himself
Ritchey Brown Young Man
Nancy Lee Johnson Young Girl
Gayle Davis Older Girl
James L. Buchanan II Preacher
1980 Trans Am Son of Trigger

Jackie Gleason played Sheriff Buford T. Justice, Gaylord Justice and Reginald Van Justice. For his roles as Sheriff Buford T. Justice and Reginald Van Justice he is credited as Mr. Jackie Gleason, but for his role as Gaylord he is credited as Ms. Jackie Gleason.

Burt Reynolds and Dom DeLuise would star together again in The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas, The Cannonball Run, Cannonball Run II, and (in voice only) Don Bluth's All Dogs Go to Heaven. As he did in the first movie, Reynolds breaks the fourth wall after being reunited with Frog, by addressing the camera and saying, "She still loves me."

Production notes[edit]

Many of the movie's scenes take place in northern Palm Beach County, especially at the Burt Reynolds' ranch in Jupiter, FL.

Although the Bandit again sticks to a Pontiac Trans Am, this time a 1980 Turbo model with 5 color decals unlike 1981's single color decals, Snowman switches to a 1980 GMC General, silver with blue trim with the same mural on the trailer as on the original film. This 'new rig' suggests that the pair were successful in the "double or nothing" wager offered by the Burdettes at the end of the first film where they were persuaded to drive from Atlanta to Boston and back in 18 hours to buy clam chowder.

A world-record automobile jump was captured on film during the "roundup sequence," when stuntman Buddy Joe Hooker jumped a 1974 Dodge Monaco over 150 feet. Hooker suffered compressed vertebra as a result of a hard landing.

The roundup sequence in the desert shows many new Pontiac Le Mans sedans decorated as police cars being destroyed. The cars were originally ordered by a car rental agency in Phoenix, who refused delivery when they discovered the cars were not equipped with air conditioning. Pontiac took the cars back and eventually gave them to the producers to be used in the film.

Smokey and the Bandit II was filmed at the same time as The Cannonball Run, in which Burt Reynolds and Dom DeLuise also starred. Football player Joe Klecko also appears in both films.

Reception[edit]

The film received negative reviews from critics who felt that the original was better. It currently has a "Rotten" rating of 20% on Rotten Tomatoes.[3] Roger Ebert gave it one star and stated that there was "[in 1980] no need for this movie. That's true of most sequels, but it's especially true of "Smokey and the Bandit II," which is basically just the original movie done again, not as well...how can I say it's lazy when it has 50 trucks doing stunts in it? Because it takes a lot less thought to fill up a movie with stunts than to create a comedy that's genuinely funny. "[4] It was a mild success, earning $66,132,626 at the box office.[5] Nevertheless, it inspired a third film where Reynolds appeared only in a cameo appearance before the end credits, Field had no involvement whatsoever, and Gleason practically filled the film.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Trivia for Smokey and the Bandit II". IMDb. Retrieved April 1, 2013. 
  2. ^ "Smokey and the Bandit II, Box Office Information". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved August 25, 2012. 
  3. ^ Smokey and the Bandit II at Rotten Tomatoes
  4. ^ Ebert, Roger (August 22, 1980). [http:www.rogerebert.com/reviews/smokey-and-the-bandit-ii-1980/ "Smokey and the Bandit II Movie Review (1980)"]. Chicago Sun-Times. Retrieved September 16, 2013. 
  5. ^ "Smokey and the Bandit II, Box Office Information". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved August 25, 2012. 

External links[edit]