Day 207 – American Graffiti


Movie Title: American Graffiti

First Watch / Repeat Viewing

Running Time: 1 hr. 50 min.

Rated: PG

Who did I watch with?: Stephie

Where did I watch it?: Home


American Graffiti serves aptly as George Lucas’s love letter to a bygone era. Curt (Richard Dreyfuss) and Steve (Ron Howard) are off to college and Curt is having second thoughts about going. He looks up to John (Paul Le Mat) who graduated from high school and is just hanging around racing his roadster and cruising for girls. Curt sees something he likes in this lifestyle. Minus John, they all end up going to a last dance at their old high school.

Along the way there are plenty of hijinks like cherry bombs in the school toilets. There are beautiful cars, period dance music, and relationship issues. All of the characters are torn between their home town and going away. Curt wants high school to last forever. Steve wants to keep his girlfriend and get the right to fool around in college. Everyone else is cruising for girls and looking for a good time in their classic cars.

American Graffiti is very plot light, but high on style. A very young Harrison Ford has a small role as a local racer looking for John. The performances are very good considering how green the cast was and how much unknown talent was discovered through this movie. It is a love letter to youth. With that said, youth can also be very annoying, and I felt myself beyond this movie more than a few times. I see the appeal, but I didn’t personally love the formula used to make the movie.


Classic cars, dance music, car hops, and high school students in a fairly idyllic small town. See it if you are making your way through the classics. Otherwise, skip it.

Tomorrow’s Movie: Lies & Alibis (2006)

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