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THE WRAITH [1986]

The Wraith ( 1986 ) Directed by: Mike Marvin Written by: Mike Marvin Starring: Charlie Sheen , Nick Cassavetes , Randy Quaid , Sherilyn Fenn

AVAILABLE ON Blu-ray, DVD and Digital

RUNNING TIME: 92 mins

REVIEWED BY: Dr Lenera

the wraith movie scenes

In the town of Brooks, Arizona, Packard Walsh and his motorised gang force drivers to drag-race so they can ‘win’ their vehicles. He views Keri Johnson as his property, even though she’s not actually his girlfriend and has no intention of being so. Did Walsh have had something do to with Keri’s boyfriend James “Jamie” Hankins being mysteriously murdered, leaving no trace? Jacob “Jake” Kesey arrives in town on a bike and befriends both Keri and Jamie’s brother William “Billy” Hankins who’s something of an outcast. And a black Dodge M4S Turbo Interceptor starts to turn up, especially around Walsh and his group so its helmeted driver can wordlessly challenge them to races which could end fatally for them, while the Turbo is able to reconstruct itself and vanish in a cloud of glowing light. Sheriff Loomis is understandably baffled. Who could this seemingly vengeance-driven person be?….

the wraith movie scenes

I think I’ve mentioned before how revisiting old loves from a long time ago is not always something that ends happily. We can all probably name films which we once loved before moving on, and then, when we watched them again with much older and even wiser eyes, their magic was gone and we may even have wondered what we saw in them in the first place. The Wraith is one film I recall thinking was so darn cool not long after it came out on video, right from just the cover. But after a few years I never went back to it. Did I develop a hunch that, actually, it was pretty rubbish and a new viewing would tarnish my memories of enjoying it so much back in the day? Maybe I did in a subconscious way, but finally I’ve given it a go over thirty years later. And, perhaps shockingly, I still thought it was  -well – not darn cool but certainly fairly cool. It undoubtedly screams the ’80s in both good and bad ways, yet tells its fatalistic story with a surprising amount of conviction; if made now it would probably be slightly poking fun at itself which is something I’m getting tired of and I’m sure I’m not the only one. The High Plains Drifter -inspired plot has been simplified, relocated to being around teens, and sometimes seems to be little more than an excuse for lots and lots of car racing and chasing, not to mention pop music blaring out every ten minutes or so, yet there’s something rather likable about the whole endeavour. They could have gone really dark, and at times there seem to be signs of this really dark movie, but as I type I’m rather happy that it turned out the way it did. It has a strange sort of innocence about it and it certainly never stops moving.

The idea supposedly came from Kim Masters, a studio executive at Disney, who told writer/director Mike Marvin the premise, and the two discussed and worked on it for several years. The Dodge M4S Turbo Interceptor was originally a pace car [one that sets the pace for the warm-up lap of a race or controls the pace in hazardous conditions. It was used in close-ups, while six copies were made; four non-drivable “dummies” that were destroyed during filming and two stunt cars made from moulds of the original car, though it took ages to find the moulds which then disappeared again for 15 years. The real car was used in close-ups. Shooting took place entirely in and around Tucson, Arizona, Big Kay’s Burgers being a converted beauty salon. Because of a tight timing window prior to filming Platoon , Charlie Sheen’s scenes were filmed in one day except for the flashbacks; the use of a Sheen double in those scenes ended up working better anyway. Bruce Ingram, a camera operator, died during the filming of one of the car chases, with an overloaded camera car overturning; another crew member was seriously injured. Marvin had to battle corner-cutting execs and producer John Kenemy virtually every day who just wanted everything to be shot fast and cheap, even cutting the shooting schedule. They didn’t even pay for a decent sound mix, though this seems to have been corrected for home viewing. Editor Scott Conrad reshaped the early part of the film, causing a few continuity issues that Marvin didn’t notice at first. Still, Cinema business was good even if reviews were generally poor. Said Sheen, “Oliver Stone went and saw it in the movie theater and called me so angrily afterwards. He was genuinely worried that The Wraith was going to soil peoples’ opinions of Platoon “. Marvin was unable to direct anything for three years due to Ingram’s death, then made a few teen movies and eventually soft porn under the name of Jake Kesey, Sheen’s character.

Clint Eastwood’s Stranger appeared in a dust storm. Here, we see four [animated] spheres of light descending from the night and, after some whizzing around pylons and destruction of signs, they collide at an isolated desert crossroads. Makes sense, seeing as a desert crossroads is often considered a place where you can meet supernatural beings, as well as make deals with The Devil. The collision forms the Turbo Interceptor, and we get a lot of loving closeups of the vehicle. Yes, this is a film that loves cars, and one may become tempted to think that it cares more about its cars than its people, though I don’t think it quite goes that far. We cut from the first shot of its mysterious [well, not really but hey] driver to another car driven by a guy with his admiring girlfriend beside him. Unfortunately he’s pursued and also blocked by Packard and his lot who force him to race by threatening that they’ll rape his girl. During the race, Walsh forces him off the road and thereby wins, then takes his car. This obviously happens very often, the group virtually ruling the area, even the town at least in terms of its young people. Along comes Jake, memorably introduced on his bike driving down a road from a huge distance towards the viewer, who immediately annoys Packard. He comes across Keri and asks her directions, but when she’s about to jump on his bike to show him, Walsh turns up. “You’re mine, I’ll do anything to keep it that way” he growls at her. She won’t become his girlfriend, so the response is, “If you’re not gonna be my girl, you’re not gonna be anybody’s girl”. Packard is a borderline psychopath who rules gang with threats and intimidation, while also being extremely jealous and possessive. And he’s rather unnerved by Jake. He thinks he reminds him of somebody, and hates it that Jake, who also gets to know the brother of Keri’s murdered ex Billy, and Keri are getting friendly.

the wraith movie scenes

All this is handled with economy, yet scenes are still allowed to breath. We especially get a sense of poor Keri’s predicament. There’s no mystery though; we know who Jake is really early, right from when we see him being killed in a flashback and soon after see that he has knife scars on his neck and back. In any case, the action soon begins to take over as the Turbo Interceptor appears, seemingly from nowhere, plus its driver who wears a black race helmet and is covered head-to-toe in black body armur which is adorned with metal braces resembling those worn by victims recovering from severe physical injuries. Driver and car especially like to show up where Packard and his buddies are hanging around so they will race with him. First up is Oggie [whom Marvin wanted Johnny Depp to play]. He dies in a high-speed, fiery crash which oddly leaves his body untouched except for burnt out eye sockets while the car puts itself back together again and disappears before the eyes of Sheriff Loomis and his men, Randy Quaid being given the role of the archetypal person whose presence actually matters not to the story but who we can put ourselves in the place of if we’re sceptics about the supernatural. We’re told that the dramatic turning point will be when Keri stands up to Packard and totally defies him, because Jake tells her that she needs to do this. This suggests a somewhat deeper, more psychological piece where Jake could possibly be a figment of Keri’s imagination who helps her, but nah, this is The Wraith after all. There’s none of the ambiguity and moral complexity of High Plains Drifter where The Stranger isn’t always likable and nearly the whole town is guilty because they watched a killing and let it happen. It’s just simple good vs. evil as Jake enacts his revenge, sparing the life of the one ‘good’ gang member. I’d have probably had Jake kill him too, but then I don’t write movie scripts and they were going for a quite feelgood vibe here despite the horror touches.

We don’t see much in the way of human death, but do witness lots of vehicles burning and exploding. Rather than this showing a supposed lack of interest or compassion for the living beings in this film, I see this more as a way to keep the rating a ‘PG-13′ in the United States. Here in the UK it got an ’18’ which seems rather harsh, though things are still on the edge of what one would assume was typical teenage viewing, especially with two of the gang members knocking back WD40 which they’re totally addicted to, some shots of breasts [missing from some versions] and that thrice repeated red-heavy flashback which gets more detailed with each itineration; its brutality really comes across even though we see very little of the slashing and the beating. Marvin and Conrad, or Marvin and the other editor Gary Rocklen [I don’t know who worked on what] use quick cuts without things becoming incomprehensible [that’s not often the case today], as they also do on the frequent car footage where a variety of angles aids the excitement and stops things from becoming too repetitious. Some details are odd, as if Marvin left out some explanatory material. A notable example is when, each time The Wraith kills one of the gang members, a mysterious arm or leg brace is shown vanishing. Marvin explained in interviews that this was intended to mean that The Wraith was getting stronger with each act of revenge, but you don’t get this from watching the film. One thing that I think this film would do if made today is go more detail into the supernatural side of things, though if you think about it the similar The Crow wasn’t much less vague, yet we didn’t feel cheated by this.

One can’t help but wonder why they thought that snow, in a film set in summer but filmed in winter, wouldn’t be noticed in a few backgrounds. And would the gang member who says the word “wraith” actually know said word. Yet these guys are all effectively if simply sketched so they provide a bit of comic relief yet we’re also intimidated by them, while Nick Cassavetes [son of John] makes for a scarily convincing alpha male who inside is very weak indeed. As for Sheen, he’s very likable, even if he does first appear wearing just a blue demin jacket with all the buttons undone. Was that look ever cool? One character I wanted to spend more time with was Billy [Matthew Parry]; one gets the idea that his part was edited down, which means that an emotional payoff doesn’t really hit the mark like it should. And then there’s the songs. They seem too frequent and aren’t a particularly good backdrop for the action scenes especially when we also have some driving [sorry] scoring from Michael Hoenig and J. Peter Robinson which acts as a much better accompaniment. I feel that quite a few first time modern viewers will wish the film had gone more into the horror potential of the tale, especially when we get suggestions that it will do this, like Jake suddenly emerging from behind Jamie’s tombstone. This means that I wouldn’t be opposed to a remake which did such a thing. Yet it’s also possible to like the direction they went in here. Jake, much like Eric Draven, comes back as much for love as revenge. This means that not just does the rather idealised romance between Jake and Keri work very well in context, but also that the happy ending, despite it raising a lot of questions, failed to irritate the Doc at all, a person who generally loves his downbeat endings, especially when they seem such natural conclusions.

★

  • Charlie Sheen

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The Wraith's Writer & Director Details the Car's Killer Construction (Exclusive)

In an exclusive clip ahead of The Wraith's Blu-ray re-release, director Mike Marvin details what design choices made the Interceptor so unique.

1986's  The Wraith is an often-times bizarre and exciting riff on the street-racing film genre. The cult classic brings a supernatural edge to an explosive series of car races. In honor of the film's upcoming 25th anniversary, it's receiving a Blu-Ray and Digital Home Release.

The new edition of the film will come with a host of special features -- including interviews with Mike Marvin, the writer/director of The Wraith . Ahead of the film's upcoming re-release, Lionsgate exclusively shared a clip with CBR of Marvin discussing the unique construction of the Turbo Interceptor used in the film. He also examines the car's distinct design elements that gave it such an otherworldly and haunting feel throughout the action-thriller film.

RELATED: The Suicide Squad Pulls This Harley Quinn Scene Straight From the Comics

The 93-minute film was made with a $2.7 million budget and grossed $3.5 million worldwide, with around $1.4 million from the United States. While the film wasn't considered a commercial success at the time, it found a second life with thriller and rock n' roll fans as a beloved classic with its Billy Idol, Ozzy Osbourne and Mötley Crüe-starring soundtrack.

An official synopsis for  The Wraith reads,

Charlie Sheen , Nick Cassavetes, Sherilyn Fenn, and Randy Quaid star in this turbocharged cult classic! When four glowing orbs crash into each other over the Arizona desert, they leave in their wake a badass Dodge Turbo Interceptor — and its enigmatic, helmeted driver. The next day, the mysterious Jake (Sheen) appears in the town of Brooks, catching the eye of Keri (Fenn) and the ire of Packard (Cassavetes), the ruthless leader of a gang of street racers. When gang members start losing races — and lives — to the Interceptor, the recent death of Keri’s boyfriend suddenly seems connected to the arrival of Jake, the unbeatable car…and an avenging entity called The Wraith.

Directed/Written by Mike Marvin, the new edition of The Wraith will be available for purchase on Blu-ray and VOD Jul. 20.

KEEP READING:  Wheel of Time Prequel Movie Lands Thor Co-Writer

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1986, Action, 1h 32m

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The wraith videos, the wraith   photos.

The mysterious driver (Charlie Sheen) of a turbocharged domestic car drag-races an Arizona hot rodder (Nick Cassavetes) in the desert.

Rating: PG-13

Genre: Action

Original Language: English

Director: Mike Marvin

Producer: John Kemeny

Writer: Mike Marvin

Release Date (Theaters): Nov 21, 1986  limited

Release Date (Streaming): Sep 3, 2013

Box Office (Gross USA): $1.4M

Runtime: 1h 32m

Production Co: New Century Entertainment Corporation, Turbo Productions, Alliance Entertainment

Sound Mix: Surround

Cast & Crew

Charlie Sheen

Jake Kesey, The Wraith

Nick Cassavetes

Packard Walsh

Griffin O'Neal

Randy Quaid

Sheriff Loomis

Sherilyn Fenn

Keri Johnson

David Sherrill

Jamie Bozian

Clint Howard

Mike Marvin

Screenwriter

John Kemeny

Buck Houghton

Executive Producer

Cinematographer

Scott Conrad

Film Editing

Gary Rocklen

Michael Hoenig

Original Music

J. Peter Robinson

Dean Tschetter

Art Director

Michele Starbuck

Set Decoration

Ilene Starger

Critic Reviews for The Wraith

Audience reviews for the wraith.

With a booming soundtrack from the 1980s, this is just a bit more than an afternoon high school special (read: boobies) as the arrogant, drugged-out, local punks are made to pay (read: horrible burning death) for breaking up a burgeoning young romance. Thirteen years earlier Clint Eastwood's High Plains Drifter covered the same ground only better. But he didn't have drag races in the desert, did he?

the wraith movie scenes

A young lad comes back from the dead to take revenge against the ruthless gang (of slightly older lads) that murdered him. There is no crow to help this young man though, no this lad comes back from the dead as a supernatural highly skilled street racer so he can...umm...race the gang members one by one and kill them in bizarre car accidents. You wouldn't think it though as the start of the movie feels more like the arrival of an alien being more than anything. Anyway, [b]really[/b[ not too sure why he doesn't just come back and simply shoot them or whatever, but the gang are street racers themselves so I guess that explains it, kinda. So yes, the plot of this movie is your typical revenge thriller. Your typical supernatural tale of an innocent person coming back from the dead to avenge their untimely death at the hands of some baddies. But it is indeed strikingly similar to the bird-related graphic novel that sprouted from the brain of one James O'Barr that's for sure. One has a heavy rock theme whilst the other a heavy car theme. The genesis of O'Barr's supernatural tale started way back in 1981, with the graphic novel eventually coming out in 1989, and finally followed by the movie in 1994. Of course the similar plots could just be coincidental, but it does get you thinking. Anyway, as I said the very start of this movie is hella cheesy and looks more like the introduction of an alien being landing on a deserted desert highway, in a souped-up car. The effects are of course incredibly 80's lookin', naturally, but boy do they look good. Think of the speedy visuals from 'Tron' but set against a silvery full moon in a desert and finishing with a reveal shot of the mysterious hero clad in an all-black with a racing helmet. The whole sequence is gloriously goofy yet at the same time the epitome of retro coolness. The Baddies: Now these dudes are a small bunch of (five) young guys, probably in their early 20's, led by one much older guy named Packard (Nick Cassavetes). Not sure if he was actually supposed to be older or that was just down to the fact they cast Cassavetes as a young man in his early 20's when he clearly wasn't. Anyway these guys are, again, the epitome of the classic 80's gang. Nick the leader is a bit of a greaser with his hairstyle and black leather jacket. Whilst his young henchmen are a mix of drugged up punks, weasely rats, and your cliched high school bully type all with silly names. It's an odd blend really because Nick is shown to be quite mentally unhinged and perfectly happy to actually kill people. Whilst his cronies are often more light-hearted, acting as comedic relief being all goofy and dumb. Clint Howard (who looks too old for the part) plays the brains behind the gangs car mods and sports a weird haircut that's straight outta the 1977 film 'Eraserhead'. The bad guys are an interesting bunch. They mostly seem to be young adults that don't appear to do anything of use. Yet they seem to own this huge garage chock full of mechanical equipment for maintaining cars. We know they take part in crime, petty and serious. And we know they force people to race their souped-up cars and keep them when they win (by cheating). But we only see two of them with some kind of manual labour job, whilst Packard does nothing accept cruise around lookin' for fights, races, and watching his girl. So how do they afford to keep this large garage with all its gear? Do they actually run a service for people? Or do they fix up their victory cars and sell them? How have they not been busted by the cops yet?? The Girl: I did find it amusing that the sweet innocent girlfriend of Packard (Keri played by Sherilyn Fenn) actually continues to go out with him despite the fact he's clearly bad news. Don't get me wrong she knows he's bad news but never really seems too upset over it. She lodges some complaints here and there sure but she never really goes for it. The fact that he constantly threatens her and claims he owns her should really be an alarm bell to get the hell outta that relationship; nah she just protests a bit then carries on. I was like, girl go to the police for God's sake. The Hero: So Packard and his mates killed this poor kid Jake (Charlie Sheen). Luckily he comes back as a supernatural force to take revenge...in a supernatural super-powered car. Again don't get me wrong its a super cool concept but...really? Like why does he need the car? If you're able to come back from the dead (or given the powers to do so by a greater force), you don't need a supercar surely. Anyway we know this is just an excuse for fast car racin'. The bad guys steal and race cars so the only way to beat them is race them, apparently. Jake is decked out in an all-black tinted helmet with an all-black jumpsuit which is covered in metal parts which represent other victims. I didn't quite get this, were these parts supposed to represent former victims of Packard's gang? Another thing I didn't get was what Jake was supposed to be. For starters he comes back from the dead in a different body, he says it was the closest to what he used to look like. But what's going on with that? Why doesn't he come back in his original form/body? Who's body does he come with? Next up, is Jake a ghost or not? At the end Jake and Keri leave town together to start afresh. But is Jake actually alive? Is he a rotting corpse? A ghost? Reborn completely?? Immortal? Invincible? The Car: The car in question was a Dodge M4S Turbo Interceptor. A high-performance supercar designed and built in 1981for demonstration purposes. It most definitely looks the biz in this that's for sure. All black, completely tinted all round, low to the ground, and with a very sleek curvy aerodynamic spaceship design. The car is very effective throughout the movie (much like the DeLorean was for 'Back to the Future') and certainly emits a mysterious, dangerous and speedy quality. Alas the actual races we get are clearly filmed at low speeds which spoils the fun but the sight of this car lining up against some other classic all-American muscle cars is a sight to behold (for petrolheads anyway). Another aspect the movie seems to hint at is the fact that Packard knows of The Wraith (never called that in the movie I think). When Jake turns up at their garage (in his all-black attire) and shoots up the place, Packard acts as if this has happened before. He doesn't actually seem particularly scared either, as if he's seen this black-clad vigilante before. All in all Packard is as cool as a cucumber when you'd think he'd be terrified like the other guys. So it kinda seems there's a history here which is odd because Jake only turns up in the area at the start of the movie so...what's going on here? This movie really is the quintessential naff 80's action flick. It has all the ingredients from the wacky villains to the wicked cars to the plot that really doesn't add up when you think about it. But somehow none of that really matters. The supernatural element isn't really that spooky or tense or anything, it's just quirky and fun. The special effects are actually pretty solid. The race and crash sequences are fairly well done in a Saturday morning cartoon kinda way ([i]Pole Position[/i]). Sheen's lifeless performance is odd but Cassavetes and his henchmen are clearly enjoying themselves while they chew up the scenery. Whilst Randy Quaid as the local sheriff pretty much plays a character we've seen him do before. If you like comicbook type flicks then you'll like this. In fact it does feel like an update of a 30's pulp comic character, kinda. Highly enjoyable fast food trash. 7/10

The reason I decided to watch this movie was, when I watched the trailer, I thought that I hadn't actually seen it. Then again, the trailer I found, on this site here actually, was the first scene of the movie. It didn't actually show anything else. I'm 100% positive that I could have found an actual trailer for the film on YouTube, but I just didn't look for one. But, really, this is a movie about a guy who comes back form the dead, who has access to a supernatural car, to take revenge of those who murdered him. Of course I was gonna watch this sooner or later. So, color me surprised, that I actually have seen this movie before when I was much younger, I just didn't remember the movie's name. I don't wanna say I have fond memories of this movie, because I can't even remember if I liked it or not. But I do have very vivid memories of this and some of its scenes. It was almost as if I had watched it multiple times. I don't remember specific dialogue or anything like that, but some of the racing scenes are burned in my mind for some reason. And the scene where Gutterboy and Skank are killed in a huge explosion, I certainly remember that one as well. If there's any reason to watch this movie, it's really because it's about as campy as 80s movies get. Over-the-top villain, ridiculous acting, 80s hair metal soundtrack. What else can one ask for??? This film mixes elements of Knight Rider, Robocop and Mad Max to tell its ridiculous story and, for the most part, it's an entertaining watch. Though, you may ask yourself why I gave it an average rating if I was entertained by it. And to that I say that the film felt a little too one-dimensional for it to get a better rating. Not to mention the fact that the racing scenes were all the same, regardless of who was involved. Another thing is the fact that the movie says that Charlie Sheen is the star of the movie, but there's a big chunk of the film where he doesn't appear. Almost as if he wasn't even on set for one reason or another. If I were to quantify how much Charlie actually appeared on-screen, I'd say it was around 40% and maybe that's even too enthusiastic of a percentage. That's not really that much of a problem, because Charlie didn't actually add much anyway. He just didn't really seem to care, if you look at his performance. The only reason he was there was to make out with Sherilyn Fenn, who is absolutely gorgeous in this movie. Not the best actress here, but thankfully she improved later in her career. And that's another thing, the romance between Fenn and Sheen's character is so underdeveloped it's not even funny. The characters have literally nothing in common other than the fact that they find each other attractive. They don't spend any time getting to know each other, they just get right down to business. And I get that, you have a very limited time to tell your story, but at least make some sort of effort to tell a believable romance between then two. Then again, the movie is about a guy who comes back from the dead, in another body, to gain revenge on those who murdered him while using a supernatural vehicle. Realism CLEARLY wasn't an important part of the story. Like I said though, even with that, I found the movie to be just some good, campy fun even with its flaws. I don't really know what else to say about this that hasn't already been said. The acting is so-so, the characters are stereotypes, the action is repetitive, but there's a charm to this movie that can't be denied. And that makes it far more watchable. I wouldn't recommend it, but it's a campy good time if that's what you're looking for. This is an average movie at best.

Gotta love 80's acting at its finest paired with radically rediculous explosions, pop hits and car chases.

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The Wraith

The Wraith ( 1986 )

6 questions.

Directed by: Mike Marvin

Starring: Charlie Sheen , Randy Quaid , Nick Cassavetes , Sherilyn Fenn

Genres: Action , Horror , Romance , Sci-fi , Thriller

Question : What did they use to create the sound of the Turbo's engine?

Question : Were there scenes in the movie that were shot but deleted? There is evidence in the movie that at least two scenes were cut. (1) Near the beginning of the movie, there is a scene outside Big Kay's Burgers in which Packard is bullying Billy Hankins to make him race his Triumph. While that's going on, the Turbo shows up and revs its engine. Packard asks Rughead what kind of car that was and Rughead answers that he didn't know but would find out after they had added the Turbo to their "collection." Oggie Fisher then asks Packard "come on, let me take him this time." This suggests that the gang had encountered the Turbo earlier in the movie and had not been able to catch it. Also, when Oggie lines up with the Turbo to just before the race, Packard tells Oggie "I want you to rip this guy a new asshole." Why was Packard so angry at the Turbo's driver if he had never seen him before and didn't know how fast the Turbo was? There must have been an earlier scene involving the Turbo and Packard's gang. (2) In the scene in the warehouse, just before the Wraith shows up with the shotgun, there is an odd conversation between Packard and Minty. Packard starts to ask Minty something but Minty interrupts, saying "yeah, don't worry, I got those elbow joints sold to the Dallas boys for $2900." Packard then smiles and says "yeah, that old man was pretty pissed off." There must have been an earlier scene where the gang rips off the "old man" and steals a bunch of elbow joint to resell and raise money. That would explain how they got the elbow joints, why Minty sold them and why Packard said what he did. Anyone know about deleted scenes?

Question : What are those devices we see disappear from the wraith's arm and after the second and third race supposed to be?

Chosen answer: I believe they are markers to show how many people are left to take revenge on for his death.

The problem with that answer is that the Wraith had to kill five people (Oggie, Minty, Skank, Gutterboy and Packard) and he only had four of those metal braces. If he had one for each gang member he wanted revenge on, he would have had five. I think he was only given four chances to crash his car and reassemble, and once they were gone, that was it. That's why he killed Skank and Gutterboy at the same time.

Question : I'm a bit confused by the end of the movie. When Jake takes off with Keri, where was he taking her? Was Jake going to start a new life with Kari somewhere else or, was he going back to heaven and decided to take her with him?

Answer: He said he came back for her, only in a new face. So, yes, like in the old westerns the hero rode off into the sunset with his lady love.

Question : Why didn't the sheriff do anything about Packard's gang? Surely someone must have wanted to file a complaint at some point? And if the sheriff isn't doing his job, why doesn't the state police step in?

Answer: After the first race where Augie is killed the sheriff says "I've been waiting to catch you guys in the act. Been waiting and watching." So we can assume there were complaints made however the sheriff may not have had enough evidence to shut them down completly. As far as the state police, I'm not sure. May be a jurisdictional thing.

I agree with this answer. Packard was very careful not to flagrantly break any laws. He even said this to Loomis in the "paper doll" scene later in the movie - Packard says that the gang hadn't done anything except "bust the speed limit."

Question : When Jake enters the gang members hideout with a shotgun why didn't he just kill them all right then since that's what his mission was?

Answer: That would be too quick and easy, he wanted them to suffer. They thought they owned the road, he wanted them humiliated, they died from their own carelessness. They were so determined to win they pushed their cars to the limit and disregarded all the rules of safety.

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Sheriff Loomis : You listen to me, you son-of-a-bitch! There's a kid out there usin' his car to kill people, not that it's such a big deal since it seems to be your gang he's got it in for... so, if you guys try to take the law into your own hands, and that killer turns up dead, I'm gonna see you all sniffin' cyanide in the Arizona gas chamber.

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THE WRAITH (1986) – RIPPER CAR MOVIES

Charlie sheen comes back from the dead in the wraith, a crazy car movie that won fans among the street machining crowd, share this:.

the wraith movie scenes

AH, THE 80s, when Charlie Sheen was young and busting through his first 500 chicks, among them perhaps his The Wraith co-star Sherilyn Fenn, who is babalicious in all the right ways in this B movie.

The Wraith 1986 Cover

The Wraith is a classic revenge flick, with a gang of hydraulic fluid-drinking goofs run down by a mysterious dude back from the dead in a Dodge M4S Turbo Interceptor.

The parallels with Mad Max are unmistakeable, particularly the gang members, but unlike Mad Max they’re about as dangerous as Duran Duran.

The car chases are pretty lame as different gang members beg for their turn to die in fiery auto crashes, although their bodies are strangely sucked dry of life rather than melted or torn apart — all to try to add to some kind of horror.

But the real horrors are the acting, continuity, sound effects and a large portion of the script. What saves it is that sprinkled through the dialogue are some classic lines.

Packard: “All right. I want you to tear this guy a new asshole. Do it to him Oggie-style.” Oggie: “I’ll burn this Iranian!” Or this: Rughead: “What’s he got with us?” Packard: “What he’s got is an ass full of trouble.” Skank: “Yeah, it’s about time we got into somebody’s ass, huh, guys?” Gutterboy: “We’ll beat him like a red-headed stepchild!”

The cars aren’t too shabby. There’s a Corvette Stingray and a couple of Dodge Daytonas (’84 and ’87) plus a ’77 Pontiac Firebird Trans Am with seemingly non-functional injector hat. The star of the show, however, is the Interceptor, which is a Mopar M4S concept built in conjunction with PPG and used as the pace car in the Indycar series.

The Wraith 1986 1

VERDICT: 3/5

The Wraith is a classic piece of 80s schlock and we know more than a few street machiners of a certain age who stretched their VHS copies of this flick to breaking point. Well worth a watch for laughs with a few mates and beers.

The Wraith 1986 2

  • Dodge M4S concept car
  • ’66 Plymouth Barracuda
  • Corvette Stingray
  • ’84 and ’87 Dodge Daytonas
  • ’77 Pontiac Firebird Trans Am

The Wraith 1986 4

COOL FLICK FACT:

A camera truck crashed on the Catalina Highway, killing camera assistant Bruce Ingram and injuring seven others. The film was dedicated to Bruce.

the wraith movie scenes

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The Wraith (1986)

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Cinema Crazed

The Wraith (1986)

TheWraith

Do we ever get a real explanation why parts of the Wraith disappear every time he kills one of his murderers? Do we know why our protagonist is resurrected in to someone who looks completely different? And where did our two protagonists go off to in the final scene once the story is resolved? That said I still really enjoy “The Wraith” for its decade soaked narrative, and eerie revenge tale. Our avenging anti-hero is like something out of a Robocop movie, donning thick black leather, a huge sleek helmet, and a pumped up shotgun decorated with LED lights that twinkle whenever he’s about to lay waste to someone. Set in a small town in Arizona, the local population is terrorized by a gang member named Packer and his group of cronies and thugs.

The way they settle their disputes with others is by racing them on the roads and when beating them, they take their cars. Out the darkness a black hot rod with an enigmatic driver emerges ready to challenge Packer and his group, all the while murdering each of his crew when they dare to race the dark driver. We then meet Jake, as played by Charlie Sheen, who garners his own dark past and begins romancing local waitress Keri, a young girl dominated by Packer who stalks her and keeps her under his control. Along the way Packer and his group are trying to figure out how to beat the dark driver and outwit his seemingly supernatural hot rod, while Keri slowly realizes Jake and the avenging angel, known as a Wraith, might just be the same person.

Mike Marvin’s direction is criminally underrated, as he pulls off some truly stunning shots, as well as some engrossing car racing and chase scenes. He brings to life this supernatural racer, and makes him an imposing presence in a ton of establishing shots where he stands stationary among a neon blue or pink back drop. One of my favorite moments involves Randy Quaid’s sheriff vainly trying to chase him down, only to see him warp in to a white ball of light down the highway and disappear in to a pink and red starburst in the sky. Pair that with the excellent rock soundtrack, and “The Wraith” really is the kind of revenge B movie you can enjoy thanks to its eccentric tone and unique hero.

Making The Wraith

The Wraith Picture

Go behind the scenes on the 1986 Sci-Fi movie starring Charlie Sheen , Sherilyn Fenn , Nick Cassavetes, Randy Quaid

Chris Nash , Clint Howard , Matthew Barry, David Sherrill, Jamie Bozian, Griffin O'Neal , Vickie Benson, Jeffrey Sudzin, Peder Melhuse, Michael Hungerford, Steven Eckholdt, Elizabeth Cox, Richard Alexander (II), Christopher Bradley, Joan H. Reynolds Update Cast

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10 Behind-the-Scenes Books for Pop-Culture Fans

W e’ve gathered 10 books that spotlight some of pop culture’s most beloved and fascinating properties, including Disney , Star Trek , The X-Files , and Labyrinth. Scroll through for ideas on what to gift-wrap for the sci-fi fanatic, the film-history buff, or even the budding photographer on your holiday list.

Looking for more gift ideas? Check out all of Gizmodo’s 2023 gift guides .

The Art of Walt Disney: From Mickey Mouse to the Magic Kingdom and Beyond (Disney100 Celebration Edition)

Why we like it: Disney has been celebrating its 100th anniversary all year with festivities that have included an avalanche of commemorative merch . This book by author and photographer Christopher Finch has become a classic for Disney fans since its original release back in 1973, and it’s now available in a revised, updated, and aesthetically spiffed-up new version. According to publisher Abrams Books, it offers “a comprehensive history and tribute to the career and legacy of Walt Disney” and “was the first to reveal the wealth of concept art, animation drawings, and archival material that is created in the course of animating films.”

Price: $100 Where to buy: Abrams Books , Amazon

Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse: The Art of the Movie

Why we like it: Ramin Zahed’s official tie-in book delves into the 2023 Sony Pictures Animation sequel, the second in the eye-poppingly dynamic series that kicked off with the 2018 Oscar winner Spider-Man: Into the Spider Verse. Creating the dazzling array of characters and settings explored in the multiverse tale was no small task, and this up-close look at Across the Spider-Verse contains “exclusive concept art, sketches, character designs, and storyboards from the visually innovative film, as well as interviews with key creators such as writers/producers Phil Lord and Christopher Miller, who offer insights into their creative process.” Check out an excerpt from the book here .

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Spielberg: The First Ten Years

Why we like it: Most directors don’t have decades-long careers full of so many hits you need an entire volume to chart just “the first 10 years,” but Steven Spielberg isn’t most directors. The time period spanned by author and documentarian Laurent Bouzereau’s book—1971-1982—includes deep dives into now-classic features like Jaws, Close Encounters of the Third Kind, E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial, and Raiders of the Lost Ark.

Price: $70 Where to buy: Insight Editions , Amazon

Dune Part One: The Photography

Why we like it: While sci-fi fans wait ( and wait ) for Denis Villeneuve’s next Frank Herbert adaptation, Dune: Part Two, there’s no better eye-candy feast than this collection of images from the Oscar-winning first film, shot on location by unit photographer Chiabella James. The book also features commentary from stars like Timothée Chalamet, Rebecca Ferguson (who also wrote the preface), Oscar Isaac, Josh Brolin, Zendaya, and Jason Momoa, plus a foreword by executive producer Tanya Lapointe and an afterword by Brian Herbert. Get a look inside the book here .

Price: $60 Where to buy:   Insight Editions , Amazon

A Masterpiece in Disarray: David Lynch’s Dune - An Oral History

Why we like it: And then there’s David Lynch’s Dune—not a multi-Oscar winner by any means, but a cult classic that’s inspired plenty of curiosity over the years. Author Max Evry gathers new interviews with stars like Kyle MacLachlan, Sean Young, and Virginia Madsen, as well as “creatives, film executives, and insiders” and even director Lynch himself to excavate the true story behind this legendary and oft-misunderstood 1984 Hollywood oddity. Read an excerpt here .

Price: $22.99 Where to buy:   1984 Publishing , Amazon

Blood, Sweat & Chrome: The Wild and True Story of Mad Max: Fury Road

Why we like it: This Hugo-nominated book by New York Times pop-culture journalist Kyle Buchanan offers “a full-speed-ahead” oral history of George Miller’s stunning 2015 action epic , which won six Oscars and racked up audience acclaim despite a brutal production plagued by harsh weather and notoriously dangerous conditions. Miller and stars Charlize Theron and Tom Hardy are among the interviewees in the book, which traces “Fury Road’s unexpected origins, through its outlandish casting process to the big-studio battles that nearly mutilated a masterpiece ... and astonishing facts behind a shoot so unconventional that the film’s fantasy world began to bleed into the real lives of its cast and crew.”

Price: $23.19 Where to buy:   HarperCollins , Amazon

Labyrinth: Bestiary - A Definitive Guide to the Creatures of the Goblin King’s Realm

Why we like it: Any fan of Jim Henson’s 1986 fantasy would break out into a spontaneous performance of “Magic Dance” upon receiving this collector’s volume by S.T. Bende, which explores the “wondrous beings and chaotic critters” that populate the movie as well as the tie-in comics and novelization. What’s more, the book includes “a stunning sketchbook featuring exclusive artwork from award-winning illustrator Iris Compiet, a selection of three beautiful art prints, and a signature card signed by the artist.”

Price: $200 Where to buy:   Insight Editions ; if you don’t need the extra flair, Insight Editions and Amazon also have a version for $35

The Wicker Man: The Official Story of the Film

Why we like it: Released in 1973, The Wicker Man is still the definitive folk-horror movie—and is just as chilling now as it was over 50 years ago. This book explores the movie’s origins, deploying “fascinating behind-the-scenes photography, new interviews, exclusive artwork, and never-before-seen material from the StudioCanal archives” to weave its tale.

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Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan - The Making of the Classic Film

Why we like it: Every Star Trek fan’s coffee table needs two things: a bowl of revenge (served cold), and this handsome volume chronicling the making-of 1982's Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan. It contains “rare and previously unpublished archival material, behind-the-scenes photography, production art, cut scenes, script extracts, and much more, alongside new and exclusive interviews with the creatives, including director Nicholas Meyer.” Get a peek inside the book here .

The X-Files: The Official Archives: Cryptids, Biological Anomalies, and Parapsychic Phenomena

Why we like it: This release from author and X-Files superfan Paul Terry is styled as a collection of “case files” pulled from the desks of FBI agents Scully and Mulder (check out a look inside and an author interview here )—making it a fun reference volume for fans wanting to know more details about the show’s most fascinating and monstrous cases. Terry has a second volume, The X-Files: The Official Archives: Volume II: Extraterrestrial Activity and the Syndicate, due out next year; you can learn more about that here .

Price: $50 Where to buy: Abrams Books , Amazon

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IMAGES

  1. The Wraith Movie Trailer

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  2. The CineFiles: THE WRAITH (1986)

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  3. The Wraith (1986)

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  4. The Wraith Movie Intro Opening Scene

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  5. Cinemaphile: The Wraith / **1/2 (1986)

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  6. 'The Wraith' Blu-Ray Review

    the wraith movie scenes

VIDEO

  1. Making The Wraith Movie car

  2. Axial Wraith Uniraith Second run

  3. [The Wraith] chase scene / Never Surrender

  4. The Wraith (Interceptor)

  5. Kyuntanii

  6. Who did it better!? Game VS. Movie 🕷 WE ARE VENOM #shortsfeed

COMMENTS

  1. The Wraith (1986)

    0:00 / 3:00 The Wraith (1986) - Garage Scene Sponge Dude 664 subscribers 359K views 3 years ago I don't own the rights to this clip, all credit goes to LionsGate, hope you enjoyed ...more...

  2. THE WRAITH "Car Chase Scene" (1986) Charlie Sheen Sci Fi Horror

    THE WRAITH "Car Chase Scene" (1986) Charlie Sheen Sci Fi HorrorPLOT: After a young man is murdered by a road-racing gang of motor-heads, a mysterious fast-dr...

  3. The Wraith

    The Wraith - Wraith Shoots up Garage (1986) 17,974 views © Lionsgate (1986)Director: Mike MarvinWriter: Mike MarvinStars: Charlie Sheen, Nick Cassavetes, Sherilyn Fenn, Randy Quaid, Matthew...

  4. The Wraith

    The Wraith is a 1986 independently made American action - fantasy film, produced by John Kemeny, written and directed by Mike Marvin, and starring Charlie Sheen, Sherilyn Fenn, Nick Cassavetes, and Randy Quaid. [3]

  5. The Wraith (1986)

    In a small town in Arizona, a mysterious man/spirit descends from the sky and manifests in a sports car and targets a local violent road-racing gang of motor heads, headed by a ruthless bully who'll do anything to get what he wants. Director Mike Marvin Writer Mike Marvin Stars Charlie Sheen Nick Cassavetes Sherilyn Fenn

  6. THE WRAITH [1986] Review

    Starring: Charlie Sheen, Nick Cassavetes, Randy Quaid, Sherilyn Fenn USA AVAILABLE ON Blu-ray, DVD and Digital RUNNING TIME: 92 mins REVIEWED BY: Dr Lenera In the town of Brooks, Arizona, Packard Walsh and his motorised gang force drivers to drag-race so they can 'win' their vehicles.

  7. 10 Things You Didn't Know About The Wraith

    9. Sherrill and Bozian imply that they had a good share of groupies while filming in Arizona, but not all locals welcomed them with open arms. During a trip to 7-11, Sherrill and Griffin O'Neal (who played fellow gang member Oggie) were sitting in their car eating burritos when a guy leaned in, grabbed O'Neal's burrito, and took a bite.

  8. The Wraith's Exclusive Clip From Director Mike Marvin

    Published Jul 19, 2021. In an exclusive clip ahead of The Wraith's Blu-ray re-release, director Mike Marvin details what design choices made the Interceptor so unique. 1986's The Wraith is an often-times bizarre and exciting riff on the street-racing film genre. The cult classic brings a supernatural edge to an explosive series of car races.

  9. The Wraith

    TRAILER 1:54 The Wraith PG-13 1986, Action, 1h 32m 36% Tomatometer 14 Reviews 61% Audience Score 5,000+ Ratings Where to watch The Wraith Rent/buy Rent/buy Rent/buy Rent The Wraith on Apple...

  10. The Wraith (1986) questions and answers

    Mister Ed Chosen answer: I believe they are markers to show how many people are left to take revenge on for his death. EMTurbo The problem with that answer is that the Wraith had to kill five people (Oggie, Minty, Skank, Gutterboy and Packard) and he only had four of those metal braces.

  11. The Wraith

    0:00 / 1:32:54 The Wraith Free with ads PG YouTube Movies & TV 177M subscribers Subscribe Subscribed 13K Jake is killed by neighborhood thugs, and returns as a mystical figure (The Wraith)...

  12. THE WRAITH (1986)

    The Wraith is a classic revenge flick, with a gang of hydraulic fluid-drinking goofs run down by a mysterious dude back from the dead in a Dodge M4S Turbo Interceptor. MORE 101 OF THE ALL TIME BEST CAR MOVIES. The parallels with Mad Max are unmistakeable, particularly the gang members, but unlike Mad Max they're about as dangerous as Duran Duran.

  13. The Wraith (1986)

    Sheen plays a restless spirit who returns from the afterlife in a turbo charged ghost car to seek revenge on the reprehensible road pirates responsible for his death, rescue roller waitress Keri (the scorching Sherilyn Fenn) from the clutches of psychotic killer Packard Walsh (Cassavetes), and say goodbye to his younger brother Billy (Matthew Ba...

  14. The Wraith (1986)

    Mike Marvin ... (written by) Cast (in credits order) verified as complete Produced by Music by Michael Hoenig J. Peter Robinson Cinematography by Reed Smoot ... director of photography Editing by Scott Conrad Gary Rocklen Casting By Ilene Starger Art Direction by Dean Tschetter Set Decoration by Michele Starbuck Makeup Department

  15. The Wraith (1986)

    Pair that with the excellent rock soundtrack, and "The Wraith" really is the kind of revenge B movie you can enjoy thanks to its eccentric tone and unique hero. This entry was posted in Halloween Horror Month , Movie Reviews and tagged Action , Crime , Gangster , Ghost , Horror , Mystery , Racing , Revenge , Romance , Science Fiction ...

  16. Watch The Wraith (1986)

    The Wraith. 1986 · 1 hr 32 min. PG-13. Action. A mysterious black turbo racing car appears and challenges a murderous gang leader to a series of races. The driver's identity may surprise everyone. StarringCharlie Sheen Randy Quaid Sherilyn Fenn Nick Cassavetes. Directed byMike Marvin.

  17. Behind The Scenes of The Wraith Movie (1986)

    Production. Go behind the scenes on the 1986 Sci-Fi movie starring Charlie Sheen, Sherilyn Fenn, Nick Cassavetes, Randy Quaid. We believe the following info is all legit. If it's bogus or you have additional info, please update us. Cast/Crew Archeress.

  18. The Wraith

    The Wraith - Final Race (1986) - YouTube © 2023 Google LLC © Lionsgate (1986)Director: Mike MarvinWriter: Mike MarvinStars: Charlie Sheen, Nick Cassavetes, Sherilyn Fenn, Randy Quaid, Matthew...

  19. The Wraith : Mike Marvin : Free Download, Borrow, and Streaming

    In a small town in Arizona, a mysterious man/spirit (Charlie Sheen, yes THAT Charlie Sheen) descends from the sky and manifests in a sports car and targets a local violent road-racing gang of motor heads, headed by a ruthless bully who'll do anything to get what he wants. Addeddate 2022-06-28 05:03:01 Color color Identifier the-wraith-1986 Scanner

  20. The Wraith

    The races in the Wraith definitely inspired movies such as The Fast and The Furious. There was no CGI at the time the Wraith was filmed, so everything had to be done with real cars and stunts. The great soundtrack in the Wraith also helped take the race scenes to the next level. The music helped create that adrenaline and excitement feeling.

  21. The Wraith Race 2 (1986) HD

    Second race scene from the 1986 cult classic 'The Wraith'

  22. 'The Wraith'

    THE WRAITH "Car Chase Scene" (1986) Charlie Sheen Sci Fi Horror. "The Wraith" is an irresistible guilty pleasure, in which a B-movie script with good car chase sequences is the hook, but far from the only thing here that works. This juxtaposition of a '60s teen biker flick with an '80s teen drama, nouveau western, and containing quasi ...

  23. 10 Behind-the-Scenes Books for Pop-Culture Fans

    Why we like it: Every Star Trek fan's coffee table needs two things: a bowl of revenge (served cold), and this handsome volume chronicling the making-of 1982's Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan ...

  24. The Wraith (1986) Trailer #1

    2.1K 248K views 3 years ago Check out the official trailer for The Wraith (1986) starring Charlie Sheen! Let us know what you think in the comments below. Watch on FandangoNOW:...