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TOPIC: The 9th Annual Varaces Awards Nominations

Re:The 9th Annual Varaces Awards Nominations 6 years 10 months ago #9503

Thanks for those nominations DH. Look forward to receiving more from other forum members.
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Re:The 9th Annual Varaces Awards Nominations 6 years 10 months ago #9517

Wow, it's about time- I haven't logged in for ages, and I'm glad to see the Awards are up and running.

If it's alright, I'd love to submit my nominations after the February 20th, as I'll be away on a family vacation from tomorrow until then. If the deadline closes before then, it's alright.

I haven't seen half the chases here... oh boy.

TDIT's exhilarating mashup of the coolest car flick with the best animated film of the year! Fast & Feathered 5 Click sig to watch!
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Re:The 9th Annual Varaces Awards Nominations 6 years 10 months ago #9519

I too have only recently seen every nominee, so I'll aim to post my nominations next week.
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Re:The 9th Annual Varaces Awards Nominations 6 years 10 months ago #9520

Glad to hear that you will be making nominations thedriveintheatre and SWF. I am aiming to get the awards up by the end of day 27/02/11 GMT time (to coincide with the academy awards) so if you post before then that will be fine.
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Re:The 9th Annual Varaces Awards Nominations 6 years 9 months ago #9534

Sorry for the delay, but here are my final nominations:

Most Inventive

Date Night

Having a high powered Audi R8 feature in a car chase is already a rare feat in itself, but the ordeal it is put through in Date Night undoubtedly makes it 2011’s most innovative, albeit preposterous, chase sequence. In a novel premise, the Audi becomes improbably lodged to the front end of an unsuspecting taxi, with both vehicles remaining attached to each other throughout the duration of the pursuit until the bitter end, resulting in carnage as both drivers struggle to maintain control. It’s all a bit too silly for my tastes, but it’s unlikely we’ll see such a scene repeated any time soon.

Honorable Mentions


Arguably 2010’s most critically acclaimed film; Inception featured an unusual chase set in a dream world that evolves throughout the second half of the film, accumulating in what must be the most drawn-out slow motion crash in cinematic history.

The Sorcerer’s Apprentice

While a tad too reliant on CGI, The Sorcerer’s Apprentice is notable for its use of switching vehicles on-the-fly – it’s not often you get to see the protagonist’s Mercedes SLR morph into a struggling Pinto.

Most Destructive


Rarely has the Bollywood industry gained any significant recognition for car chase content, but Kites represents a possible turning point. Each one of the three chases found in the film contains a high crash-count, but the Bad Boys 2-esque showdown involving police cars and a car transporter that spills its load into their path is undoubtedly the standout scene. One salivating setpiece in which a Mercedes performs a high speed rollover, only to be struck by two police cars causing one of them to flip, was particularly awe-inspiring.

Bonus points are also awarded for destroying a VW Beetle. The only aspect that ruins an otherwise stellar act of carnage is the fact that it was clearly staged on a runway rather than a highway as the film would lead you to believe.

Honorable Mentions

The Other Guys

This spoof on the well-established buddy cop thriller opens with a bang in the form of a thrilling chase that features a tasty dish of destruction. As Samuel Jackson and Dwayne Johnson pursue after felons in their police Chevelle, things turn OTT when a stalled tour bus comes into the equation. But even a hefty tour bus couldn’t stop these dogged pursuers, as it soon becomes the chase vehicle after the Chevelle meets its demise from ploughing into the bus. The car then gets launched into the felon’s SUV causing it to roll and explode just in time for the opening credits.

When you also factor the film’s other chase, involving a Toyota Prius of all vehicles, with its unique take on the familiar car-smashes-into-row-of-parked-cars routine, The Other Guys certainly had no shortage of automotive destruction.

Best Driving

The Town

Watching an unwieldy Dodge Caravan careen through the narrow streets of Boston was a spectacular sight to behold: there’s a great sense that the vehicle is being pushed beyond its limits, which, for me, is an important factor for a well-orchestrated car chase.

Honourable Mentions:

The Expendables

Stallone teams up with a gang of iconic action heroes to deliver a multi-vehicle chase that was up there with the best of 2011, thanks to sharp editing, a colossal (though somewhat misplaced) engine soundtrack and of course the daring driving.

The ancient Ford pickup manages to outwit its pursuers through sheer skill behind the wheel, manoeuvring through underpasses, dodging trucks and blasting through a warehouse. Meanwhile, a heated gun battle occurs at the same time between a hapless Jet Li in the back of the pickup and the legions of baddies in the surrounding vehicles.

Best Game

Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit

Criterion Games, famed for their fast paced Burnout franchise, took over the wheel of last year’s annual Need for Speed, and the results were second to none. With the focus back on exotics, exhilarating police chases and the open road, Hot Pursuit represents the first NFS game in many years that managed to even remotely capture the spirit of the classic Need for Speed appeal. Sporting an incredible raw sense of speed, tension and wince-inducing crashes that only Criterion could pull off, car chase fans have rarely had it better in a game.


Split/Second was also a compelling choice for car chase fans, a game that successfully put a unique spin on the racing genre by placing the player in environments rigged to be destroyed all in the name of entertainment for a fictional reality TV show. Think Death Race mixed with a helping of Michael Bay.

Heavy Rain

While not strictly a driving game, Heavy Rain deserves a place here for including a level that is possibly the closest we’ll ever get to acting out a cinematic car chase outside of Driver. Renowned for its innovative control scheme and narrative, Heavy Rain focuses on Ethan who is trying to track down the Origami Killer, a serial killer who targets children – Ethan’s son is set to be the next victim.

Before he is given access to his son, Ethan is tasked with a series of death-defying trials from the Origami Killer, driving down the wrong way down a rain-soaked freeway. It’s incredibly immersive as you dodge oncoming traffic by moving the controller like a steering wheel, allowing you to feel your character’s peril as police soon engage pursuit.

Best Racing Scene

Evolusi: KL Drift 2

If you like the sight of Japanese imports performing ludicrous drifts throughout the duration of the film, then this is a must see. The climactic scene also ups the ante by wrecking a Mazda RX-7 and Toyota Supra.

Chase of the Year

The Town

The Town succeeds predominately due its execution of an essential ingredient that’s often lacking in contemporary chases: unrelenting, pulse-pounding tension. After a botched heist, criminals Ben Affleck and co evade police in a Dodge Caravan through the narrow streets of Boston.

As the car, clearly out of its comfort zone, struggles to manoeuvre through the tight streets with the police close on their tail, you really get to feel their authentic, panic-stricken emotions. There’s a gritty sense of realism that’s rarely been found in a chase since the likes of Ronin and the Bourne series – even the believable way in which the cars understeer into the curb enhances its realistic credentials, and the pacing is peppered with a couple of superbly executed shootouts against the underpowered police.

While The Expendables may outdo The Town in the Hollywood stunt department, The Town’s more understated approach for refreshing realism effortlessly makes it more memorable.

Worst Chase of the Year

The A-Team

Here we have a film adaptation of the hit 80s show, and not one chase scene featuring the iconic A-Team Vandura van? Utterly inexcusable. Instead, we are treated to a forgettable, throwaway scene involving a Lamborghini being chased by police that barely lasts a minute

Lifetime Achievement

Peter Yates

The man who pioneered the car chase craze with the iconic Bullitt deserves all the acknowledgment he can get after sadly passing away last year. RIP Peter Yates.
Last Edit: 6 years 9 months ago by Star Wars Fanatic.
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Re:The 9th Annual Varaces Awards Nominations 6 years 9 months ago #9535

Sorry for cutting it close, but I don't want to miss out on giving my two cents this year. Thanks for reading and taking my nominees into consideration!


Reportedly the most expensive and highest-grossing Indian film of all time, this Tamil science fiction film also boasts two of the most ridiculously inventive live-action/CGI car chases since The Matrix Reloaded. In the first pursuit, the Terminator-lookalike leaps over, under and in between vehicles with wild abandon, at one point even body-surfing a hapless driver before front-flipping his jeep. But the best is yet to come, as he pulls two buses to face each other while in motion, before hopping onto a police car flying in mid-air through the gap.

The second chase is even more ludicrous, as an army of robots combine into a giant version of themselves, before proceeding to stomp down a highway, knocking aside law-enforcement vehicles and helicopters while chasing the protagonists in an RV.

A stunning achievement that has been completely overlooked by car chase fans this year (including Yours Truly), this unintentional parody completely destroys the laws of physics to deliver what must be the most deliriously absurd chases in recent years.

Car chases clip:

Honourable Mention: Inception

From the ever-brilliant mind of Christopher Nolan, this movie features several memorable vehicular setpieces, interspersed between a tense shootout and a freight train hurtling down a packed avenue. The most indelible image is that of a van floating through space on its leisurely descent from a bridge towards a river, while the protagonists fight their way through deeper dream levels.


This Bollywood movie set largely in America stars a mismatched couple who go on the run while being pursued by the Las Vegas police. Amidst the musical numbers and the brooding love scenes are several notable car chases, among them an inventive hot-air balloon jump and a nice nod to Thelma and Louise.

But the standout chase is the middle highway pursuit. Taking a leaf from Michael Bay's trope of 'Throwing obstacles out the back of a vehicle', the couple board a car transporter from a scrambler before dropping several cars in the path of their pursuers. Mayhem ensues before culminating in a grand finale; the music drops before rising to a crescendo, as a Mercedes wipes out two cruisers in a single barrel-roll. The carnage is rendered in different angles, allowing the viewer to appreciate the devastation before the protagonist drives an Eclipse off the back ramp, ending the chase. The fact that this is a traditional car chase, shot in long arcs and steady tracking, with nary a visual-effects shot, and produced from a foreign studio but set in the Mojave Desert, makes this chase all the more remarkable.

Honourable Mention: Knight and Day

Although this spy flick actually manages to be unexciting despite its relentless line of action sequences, the chases feature several wince-inducing crashes. Tom singlehandedly destroys an entire SUV escort while hanging onto the hood of the Mercury Grand commandeered by Cameron Diaz. A couple of Smart cars also get wasted in a motorcycle chase through Sevilla.


Largely snubbed by the Academy this year, Ben Affleck's hard-hitting crime epic of a bank robber and his doomed romance with one of his hostages boasts not only the best shootout scenes since Heat, but one of the greatest car chases of the year. When an armoured car heist goes horribly wrong, the gang is pursued by Boston P.D. through the narrow streets and alleyways of Charlestown. The last time a Dodge Caravan was featured in a notable chase was in Mr and Mrs Smith, and here it is similarly pushed to its limits. The burly family van barely misses lampposts, skitters off curbs, and threads-the-needle between intercepting units before being given a glorious send-off Molotov-style.

Honourable Mention: From Paris With Love

Travolta lampoons his hero-characters by playing a psychotic CIA agent who uses questionable means to save the day. Here, his spy character leans out of a speeding Audi in hot pursuit of a suicide bomber in a Volvo heading towards a VIP convoy. Some neat weaving through traffic and crashes follow, before the well-staged explosive conclusion.


I have been a huge fan of the Burnout series, so you can imagine my excitement when I heard Criterion is taking over the reins for the latest installment in the legendary Need for Speed series. This marks the franchise's spectacular return to the good ol' days of choosing a car and seeing how fast it can go. No slow-motion mode, no tacky cosmetic customisations, none of the complicated storylines and wannabe-hip menu designs. Here, the entire presentation is slick, sophisticated, and effortlessly classy, reminiscent of the interface design of the original Hot Pursuits and Porsche Unleashed. Unlike most contemporary racing games, HP allows you to play the 'good guy' and drive 'speed enforcer' units complete with police livery. With a stellar soundtrack, high-production values, beautiful natural environments, and cars you actually want to drive, NFS: HP delivers on its promises, with plenty of style to spare.


There are several reasons why The Town deserves the coveted award. The first is because it has a purpose within the story. Like past 'Chase of the Year' winners such as The Dark Knight and The Bourne Supremacy, this setpiece serves to advance the plot. As a result of this scene, FBI agent Frawley has reason to interrogate them, and build his case against the crew. The botched heist also gives Doug the impetus to leave Charlestown after realising how close he is to being captured or killed.

Another reason is it features outstanding cinematography and film editing, shot with a combination of in-car freehands, overhead stills, and smooth tracks and zoom-outs. There's even a clever shot of the in-car CCTV recording the chase live.

The minimalist soundtrack by Harry Gregson-Williams and David Buckley enhances the on-screen action, instead of detracting from it. The dialogue and reactions of the fear-drenched criminals are authentic, the stunts realistic and simple.

All these elements combine to deliver a thrilling chase that is both understated and outstanding; incredible yet believable. Guided by the strong auteur hand of Ben, this relentlessly breathtaking chase shows Hollywood how it should be done; with meticulous choreography, everyday vehicles driven extraordinarily, and buckets of sheer audacity.


The one chase in this poor remake of the TV show features a Lamborghini. It lasted less than a minute, serving only to introduce B.A. Baracus. But the final straw was when the iconic and indestructible G-van barely got its pistons moving before being unceremoniously flattened by an air-conditioning unit and forgotten for the rest of the movie.

Honourable Mention: Killers

The entire movie was a disappointment, and while the chase is one of the better setpieces in this sorry excuse for an espionage/fugitive flick, it still fails because of a gratingly-cheerful soundtrack fit for a Sunday drive and its rather uninspiring setting in a suburban neighbourhood.

TDIT's exhilarating mashup of the coolest car flick with the best animated film of the year! Fast & Feathered 5 Click sig to watch!
Last Edit: 6 years 9 months ago by thedriveintheatre.
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