Top Nine… Gas station scenes in movies

We call them petrol stations here because you get petrol at them, but in the US they call them gas stations because you get gas at them. Or something. But who cares what they’re called when they can provide the fuel for a great movie. Here are some cinema gas stations worth filling up at.

9. The Blues Brothers (1980)

The Twiggy cameo in John Landis’s classic is pretty terrible (her acting in the M & S adverts is better), but it does give Dan Ackroyd the chance to prove he’s Canadian. ‘If your date… don’t work ooot…’

8. Romeo + Juliet (1996)

Shakespeare. What a hack. You wouldn’t have seen Christopher Marlowe opening a play in a petrol station. If Tarantino every adapted the Bard, it might look a bit like this.

7. Zoolander (2001)

For a real bloodbath in a gas station, look no further than these models, idiot. Just because you’re incredibly good looking doesn’t mean you know that cigarettes and petrol don’t mix. Ben Stiller’s two-inch jumpback is one of the greatest reactions to a movie explosion ever. Take that, cast of Con Air.

6. The Birds (1963)

Hitchcock was a master of taking the mundane and making it frightening, so it’s no wonder he can spread screen terror with a few sparrows and some petrol pumps. He was also a master of torturing his leading ladies, as poor Tippi Hedren found out. Again, cigarettes and petrol don’t mix!

5. No Country For Old Men (2007)

One minute you’re milling about behind the register of your family-owned gas station, the next some guy is in your face, calling you ‘friendo’, asking you what time you go to bed and willing to bet your life on the toss of a coin. Who said working in a petrol station was dull?

4. RoboCop (1987)

Lesson to gas station staff: never bring your geometry book to work. Psychos in the future hate geometry. They love explosions though. Yep, it’s the cigarette plus petrol equation… again.

3. Wayne’s World 2 (1993)

No explosions at this gas station. Just, uh, Moses. Some people might remember Charlton Heston for parting the Red Sea or bulling about on a chariot, but I find it hard to forget that moment when he talks about that one perfect day on Gordon Street.

2. Monsters (2010)

Where else would you stage a finale in which two giant alien octopus thingys make out in midair? Of course, a petrol station, where else?

1. Dumb & Dumber (1994)

There are things on this Earth that cannot be explained. Things of such intricate beauty that attempting to put the effect they have on us into words is a fruitless exercise. There are things that are not manufactured, but just arrive in our consciousness fully formed, glistening, perfect. And then sitting above all of those things on a pedestal all of its own is Dumb & Dumber. Cigarette and petrol combine again in this gas station scene, but a subsequent explosion would be too facile for something as genius as Dumb & Dumber. So let’s go for Jeff Daniels’ left leg on fire instead.



2 Responses to “Top Nine… Gas station scenes in movies”

  1. You jerk! No, not you Ross. That Steve Martin actor, you know, the one who played the Jerk in The Jerk. No? Ah, well, look watch this for a clue.

  2. aw Simon, how can I forget that? I AM a jerk. Great clip

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