In my mother’s West Rome High School yearbook from 1978, Burt Reynolds is listed as the favorite celebrity of the year. This is no surprise considering his fan-favorite film Smokey and the Bandit (1977) had just been released the year before. 40 years later, Rome gets to welcome beloved Burt Reynolds to our city among the hills for the highly-anticipated Rome International Film Festival, which begins November 9th. Mr. Reynolds will be here for a showing of Smokey and the Bandit and for a viewing of his new film Dog Years (2017). In honor of this event, we are sharing 5 reasons why Smokey and the Bandit is still one of Hollywood’s most fun films to watch.
1. The Style
With her flipped-out do and her cute collared shirt, Sally Fields blows us away with her style. The bangs and the bell-bottomed pants are a welcome reminiscence to anyone who lived that time and those of us who hold the fashion of the seventies as the pinnacle of couture.
2. The Trans Am
We are all very familiar with The Car. With a roaring engine that promised adventure, it was the epitome of cool for any guy. It was the car the girl dreamed would show up in front of her house for her first date. This Trans Am was the stuff of any rebel’s dream It symbolized courageous defiance of any authority that stood in the way of fun.
3. The Dialogue
Carrie: You have a great profile.
Bandit: Yeah, I do, don’t I? Especially from the side.
Carrie: Well, at least we agree on something.
Bandit: Yeah. We both like half of my face.
The quick banter of the Smokey and the Frog, combined with the incomprehensible rants of Buford T. Justice never fails to produce laughter from an audience.
4. The Characters
Actors such as Jackie Gleeson as Buford T. Justice and Jerry Reed as Cledus bring to life some unbelievable players that may seem all-too familiar to anyone raised in the deep South.
5. Burt Reynolds
With his moustache and his smile, Reynolds commands the screen always. Whether he’s running from the law or wooing the sassy Sally Fields, he appeals to all members of any audience through his good humor and sense of adventure.
You can see the film and the Bandit himself at the Rome International Film Festival on Saturday, November 11th at Rome City Auditorium and catch his new film Dog Years on Sunday, November 12th at the DeSoto Theatre. Get Rome International Film Festival tickets now.