• Post category:Movies
  • Post last modified:11/25/2023

The Love Bug


Down-on-his-luck race-car driver Jim Douglas (Dean Jones) gets a white Volkswagen Beetle on his hands that turns out to have a life of its own. One of the most successful movies that year is an example of how Disney could make fine live-action entertainment for families, in this case creating a romantic image of San Francisco, using a clever combination between authentic locations and irresistibly cute matte paintings. This is a clever and charming film, with a game cast and kid-friendly races between Herbie’s gang and David Tomlinson’s uptight villain. Playful special effects bring life to Herbie the love bug.

1969-U.S. 108 min. Color. Produced by Bill Walsh. Directed by Robert Stevenson. Screenplay: Bill Walsh, Don DaGradi. Story: Gordon Buford (”Car, Boy, Girl”). Cast: Dean Jones (James ”Jim” Douglas), Michele Lee (Carole Bennett), David Tomlinson (Peter Thorndyke), Buddy Hackett, Joe Flynn, Benson Fong. 

Trivia: Followed by five sequels, starting with Herbie Rides Again (1974), and a TV series, Herbie, the Love Bug (1982). 

Last word: “I remember during The Love Bug, I took a Porsche (powered) VW around the track at Riverside (Raceway) during lunch and had it up to about 115 mph… and it was all over the road. I had Buddy Hackett as a passenger, and his knuckles were white, and he was screaming at the top of his lungs because the car, though it was very fast – it had Koni shocks and a roll bar built in and everything – but it still had some of that squirrely feeling of the old Bugs. So it was not really a good thing to do… it was a foolish thing to do, really… But I just wanted to see how fast it would go, and we were on a race track…” (Jones, Herbiemania.com)

What do you think?

Average rating 0 / 5. Vote count: 0