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Famous Pacers in Movies

(Movie titles link to Internet Movie Database entries.)

Wayne's World, 1992 and Wayne's World 2, 1993.
The AMC Pacer is best-known to many, especially those of the generation since years of production, as "the mirth-mobile", Garth's car in the 1992 comedy Wayne's World. Most will remember that the Pacer's exterior was baby blue adorned with flames, and the interior was accessorized with a licorice dispenser. A scene in the movie trailer shows Wayne driving the car recklessly and damaging it, but this scene was cut from the actual film. Wayne and Garth do, however, visit a shop for repairs in the movie. A Pacer limousine is featured in the 1993 sequel. Check out the Pacer Photo & Image Archives for pictures of the cars used in the filming of the movies.

"But, has anyone spotted the Pacer wagon? The wagon belongs to the girl who looks like Garth that works at city hall. It appears in Wayne's World 2 in two scenes.
  • Short shot between scene changes of the Aurora, IL City Hall, parked along the curb is a Pacer Wagon.
  • At the end of the movie when Wayne goes to 'rescue' Cassandra, the girl comes to Waynestock, she is seen in the background (behind Garth) coming from a yellow/brown Pacer wagon. She then says 'Hi', Garth says 'I'm busy' or something similar. She says 'I just wondered if you needed anything from the office', and he says 'That's a UNIX book... cool.'" -Shaun Boyd


Stills from Wayne's World
Wayne's World Wayne's World Wayne's World Wayne's World Wayne's World Wayne's World

Stills from Wayne's World 2
Wayne's World 2 Wayne's World 2 Wayne's World 2 Wayne's World 2 Wayne's World 2 Wayne's World 2 Wayne's World 2


NEW! Friendship! 2010.
After the fall of the Berlin Wall, two Germans travel from New York to San Francisco with only $55, a journey that involves hitchhiking in a yellow Pacer wagon.
 
Thanks to Dirk Jakob for the sighting.

Adventureland, 2009.
"A Pacer coupe... is driven by the lead acress. It was awesome to see." -Peter Waugh

Norbit, 2007.
The dance instructor owns a Pacer.

Thanks to Tim Bialecki for this sighting.
 
The Year of Getting to Know Us, 2007.
"There will be a pacer in [this movie]. The car belonged to my father David C. MacClinchy who passed away a few years ago. The car's name is Sweet Pea, because of its color. It is featured as the St. Patrick's Day car." -Penny Baker
 
Sweet Pea is featured in the Photo & Image Archives.

Running With Scissors, 2006.
"There is a scene where main character Augusten Burroughs (Joseph Cross) is running through a bus station trying to catch a bus before it leaves (I shall avoid saying why so as to avoid ruining any plot). When he is running towards the camera you can see a Pacer on the left. It's grey, and while he is running he starts slowing down. There is someone getting into the driver's door and you can see it while Augusten is standing still watching the bus pull away." -Charlie Gravelle

The Cookout, 2004.
"[In the movie trailer] there was a quick shot of a couple of guys standing in front of a dark red AMC Pacer." -Matt T.

The Whole Ten Yards, 2004.
"There is a Pacer at the motel where they stay at when they come back from Mexico. It is in there 3 or 4 times." -Kevin Tanner

Rafael Tellez Giron added that it's a red Pacer with white interior, with a sunroof. John also reported this famous Pacer sighting.

Starsky & Hutch, 2004.
"There are at least two Pacers in [the movie]. One of them is featured prominently (well, they shoot at it, and shoot out the back window), and the other is just in the background." -Aaron Schwartz

Confidence, 2003.
"In several scenes, I'm pretty sure there is a red Pacer parked in front of an offshore bank." -Barlowen

Men in Black II, 2002.
"I noticed a black Pacer with tinted windows in the background of the video they play at the beggining of the movie and once later in it. It is the vehicle that the Men in Black from that time drove." -Parker Rome

Thanks also to Phlan Jampton and Bobby Green for spotting this one.

Firestarter 2: Rekindled, 2002.
Dennis Hopper was driving a red Pacer. Thanks to Jon Eisen for spotting this one.

Dead Above Ground, 2002.
"One of the characters (played by the producer Stephen J. Cannell of 'A Team', 'Wise Guy', etc. fame) drove my car, the same Pacer woody wagon that was in 'Lost & Found.'" -Lisa De Alva
 
Beethoven's 3rd, 2000.
"A couple of bumbling crooks own a yellow Pacer that gets trashed in the movie." -A. Hart

Judge Reinhold character: "Did you find anything useful in there?" [referring to the pacer]
Police Officer: "Just fifty empty coffee cups. The car is a piece of junk."
Judge Reinhold: "Well, we know that."
(Dialogue captured by Steve Panhorst.)

Matt Kessinger added the following comment about the preview for the movie: "The driver apparently was distracted for some reason by the dog, and it began to swerve, hit things, and finally ended up hitting a cement truck and being buried in just that: cement :(."

Jesse had this to add: "Upon countless hours of boredom at work and a large quantity of unrented copies of Beethoven's 3rd, a panelist of Pacer experts (me and Scott...a coworker) have decided that there are 2 different yellow Pacers! I could be wrong, but if you get it in slow motion it looks like a nice Pacer that has been restored is driving up, and when it loses control and heads for the cement it looks identical... to the untrained eye but a few subtle differences like one has an antenna another one doesn't... Maybe I'm just seeing things too."

Lost & Found, 1999.
"Sophie Marceau's (Lila Dubois) character drives a Pacer." -Liz Gay. Update from Lisa De Alva: "I work as a property mistress in the film industry and it is my wagon that was used in [the movie]... my car is butter yellow with 'wood' paneling."

Star Wars: Episode I -- The Phantom Menace, 1999.
"I was startled NOT to find a very obvious Pacer connection in a VERY famous, recent movie.

"Come on, Pod rACER! Obviously one more of Lucas's veiled references.

"While Annakin's Pod Racer is obviously a fiberglass dune buggy body from an old Beetle, if you look carefully, there is an alien in the pod race that has a Pacer! It has no wheels or headlights, and it's floating a few feet above the ground, and the glass has been removed (actually the whole roof is missing) and it has floating engines in front of it, but look carefully, it's there." -Greg Stamper

House on Haunted Hill
House on Haunted Hill, 1999.
"A red pacer can be seen in the House on Haunted Hill, 1999. As all the guests arrive at the House, Chris Kattan has it parked in the background. He walks back to it and turns the lights off or something." -Garrett

Thanks to Rafael Téllez Girón for also spotting this Pacer in the Mexican version of the movie, La residencia del mal.

Wrecked Pacer in Last Night
Last Night, 1998.
The main character of the Canadian film Last Night drove a red Pacer sedan. Unfortunately, the Pacer used in the movie was injured quite severely. Image courtesy of ArcticBoy.

Mr. Headmistress
Mr. Headmistress, 1998.
A friend of the main character, Tucker, drives a red Pacer wagon in this Disney TV movie. At one point, they attempt to sell stolen license plates out of the rear hatch.

Good Burger Pacer
Good Burger, 1997.
The Pacer featured in the movie Good Burger featured a giant hamburger affixed to the hood, a soda cup top attached to the roof, pickle slices for hubcaps, french fries for wipers, and giant red arrows. It is now owned by the International Hamburger Hall of Fame in Daytona Beach, Florida. Image courtesy of ArcticBoy.

The Sore Losers, 1997.
A lime green Pacer appeared in this indie film "in a weird face off with a UFO powered '55 Chevy," according to ads.

Tim Hansen had the following to add: "I've seen the movie! Darin Dubinsky, the guy I sold my Pacer to, has it on DVD. There's really a surprising amount of Pacer in it, and I'm pleased to report it doesn't get a scratch on it. It's owned by Satan, in the film represented as the mother of all amazons, and she's proud of her machine. It is a very strange movie. Involves a lot of bizarre apocalyptic imagery and the killing of hippies. And also a topless woman who power-lifts a motorcycle. But don't say I didn't warn you."

A Face to Die For, 1996.
"Yasmine Bleeth plays a terribly disfigured woman who undergoes plastic surgery and changes her life. There is a scene of her arriving home, pre-operation, and she pulls up in a Pacer coupe." -Steve Gidlow

Mother
Mother, 1996.
"This is a story about a [son who moves back in his mother after his second divorce], and a Pacer was spotted in one scene. She is driving a car with her son in the passenger seat, and she's driving around a grocery store parking lot. She doesn't seem to realize that she's driving around the lot in circles over and over again, and the son keeps saying 'Mom, we're going around again, Mom. Mom!' During these 3 or 4 revolutions centered in the camera view is a green Pacer coupe." -Shaun Boyd

The PallbearerThe Pallbearer
The Pallbearer, 1996.
"Pall Bearer practically stars a maroon pacer. I think it breaks down. It doesn't have any hubcaps, and the guy from Friends [David Schwimmer] drives it around." -Jesse

Some dialogue from the movie:
Gwyneth Paltrow's character: Weren't all these recalled?
David Schwimmer's character: No, that was the Pinto.
GP: I don't think we're gonna make it.
DS: Are you kidding me? This thing's running like a top.
(Next shot - They're stranded on the side of the road.)


A Goofy Movie, 1995.
The animated Goofy drives a very Pacer-like car in this Disney movie. Read the story of a family whose Pacer posed for A Goofy Movie. See more pictures in The Pacer Page Photo & Image Archives. Images courtesy of ArcticBoy.

Mr. Holland's Opus, 1995.
A yellow Pacer can be briefly spotted parked on the side of the road in one of the driver's ed scenes in this movie.

ChasersChasers
Chasers, 1994.
Tom Berenger's character, on SP duty, must escort a female prisoner who tries to escape at every opportunity. At one point, she attempts to escape at a truck stop in an early model olive green Pacer. She fails, crashing the Pacer.

Super Mario Bros. Super Mario Bros. Super Mario Bros. Super Mario Bros.
Super Mario Bros., 1993.
This movie features a modified white Pacer coupe in some street scenes. Sighting and images courtesy of Brian Holz.

Beethoven, 1992.
"During the scene where the mother is arguing with the babysitter, a blue Pacer can be spotted in the parking lot." -A. Hart

Thanks also to Paolo Carpenè, Jan Griffith Jr., and A. Hart for reporting this famous Pacer.

Motorama
Motorama, 1991.
"This is one of those obscure movies destined for cult status. A 10-year-old kid takes off cross-country in a stolen Mustang trying to collect all the pieces in a gas-station contest. It's wonderfully surreal at times (all the states and places are fictional, including maps, license plates, and money) and the humor is decidedly dark (it's not for kids). Anyhow, in one scene, a white Pacer is inside one of the gas-stations. The attendants do work on it and you get some pretty close details of Pacer mechanicals. I caught it on Bravo last night. If you find it on cable, watch it. Worth every minute." -Tim Hansen

Pizza ManPizza Man
Pizza Man, 1991.
"Michael Dukakis" drives around Bill Maher's character, "Elmo" in a white early model Pacer coupe.

Some dialogue from the movie:
Michael Dukakis: How do you like my car? Great visibility, eh? These Pacers are great -- spacious, compact, handle well, great visibility -- can't understand why they didn't catch on.

Spirit of '76 Spirit of '76 Spirit of '76 Spirit of '76
The Spirit of '76, 1990.
A "beautiful yellow pacer played a large role in the comedy Spirit of 76. This is the car that made me fall in love with pacers, superior even to the famous 'Mirth Mobile'." -Greg Sattler

Some dialogue from the movie:
Mr. Johnson: Look what your mother and I just bought.
Mrs. Johnson: Isn't it a beauty?
Chris: Sure is... wide.

Casual Sex?Casual Sex?
Casual Sex?, 1988.
Stacy (Lea Thompson) and her friend Melissa (Victoria Jackson) are on their way to a vacation at a health resort. They jump in Stacy's car, none other than an early model blue Pacer coupe. Just as she starts the car, the muffler blows, and they have to take the bus.

Johnny Be Good, 1988.
"Back in the 80s there was a movie about a kid in high school being recruited to play football in college. It was a pretty lousy comedy. Anyhow, his high school coach had two yellow Pacers and a bunch of hairless chiuauas. It was really bizarre." -Charles Walker

Dead Man Walking custom PacerDead Man Walking custom Pacer
Dead Man Walking, 1987.
"I clipped a few good pictures of the custom Pacer Coupe pick up from the movie Dead Man Walking. It has huge tires on it, but the best part is the big fog lights mounted on the hood bumps that go over the head lights." -Bob Wilson

Images courtesy of ArcticBoy. More pictures can be found on ArcticBoy's site.

Modern Girls, 1986.
The main characters played by actresses Virginia Madsen, Daphne Zuniga and Cynthia Gibb are seen getting into a baby blue Pacer.

Thanks to Jenny Day for the pointer.

Gung Ho, 1986.
"I'm pretty sure that a maroon/red Pacer appears in the movie Gung Ho, in which Micheal Keaton helps resuscitate a factory that builds Japanese cars (though actually, the cars shown in the factory are FIATS!). The Pacer belongs to his girlfriend/wife." -David G.

Cobra, 1986.
"[This is a] Stallone shoot-em-up action flick. Something involving bikers with axes. Early in the film, they abduct a woman by chopping a hole in the roof of her baby-blue early Pacer with said axes. Kinda grisly. For the Pacer." -Tim Hansen

True Stories, 1986.
Main character Louis Fyne (John Goodman) drives a green Pacer coupe in this Talking Heads comedy. (Thanks to Bob Wilson for the reference.)

The Mean Season, 1985.
"In the film The Mean Season, Kurt Russell is an investigative journalist tracking down a serial killer. He went to interview someone that might have known the killer. This person claimed that the two of them worked in the Kenosha factory making Pacers in 1976/77, and the person that was alleged to have been the killer used to refer to the Pacer as a Kenosha Cadillac, which I suppose underlines the car's luxury nature.

In retrospect it wasn't appropriate for Consumer Union to compare the Pacer with the Rabbit, the VW Rabbit should have been compared to cars like the Pinto, Vega and other smaller, more spartan cars. The Pacer had a different mission, there was growing demand at the time for small luxury cars. Horsepower wasn't important, but compact length and refinement was. Unfortunately no Pacer was shown." -Mark Cranswick

Mask, 1985.
"[This is] an 80s movie starring Cher, and in it for not more than about 20 seconds, a blue Pacer Coupe drives by with what looks like a white vinyl roof." -Ryan Zihrul

The Goonies, 1985.
"I only saw the last bit of the movie and actually only stopped because I noticed a Pacer in the background. All the kids are reuniting with their parents and there is a grey and maroon Pacer in the backround. It is kind of behind a van of the same colors. I am not sure if this is the only pacer appearance in the movie since i only saw the very end." -Bill Davenport

A Nightmare on Elm Street, 1984.
"I've always loved [this movie] and now I know why -- there's a Pacer in it! [It's] on the street Nancy lives on; [it's] a blue 77 wagon with wood trim." -Steve

This famous Pacer sighting was also reported by Heather Bialecki.

Smokey and the Bandit II, 1980.
"Just before Sherrif Buford T. Justice gets his police car wedged in a drawbridge, you can clearly see behind him in a few shots a very nice navy blue early Pacer coupe." -Tim Hansen

Coma, 1978.
"There is a good shot of a Pacer in the parking lot at the Jefferson Institute toward the end of the movie." -Fid

Eyes of Laura Mars, 1978.
A Pacer wagon appears prominently in this Faye Dunaway thriller. (Thanks to Dr. Rafael Téllez Girón for the reference.)

Oh, God PacerOh, God Pacer
Oh, God!, 1977.
A red Pacer wagon was featured in this well-known movie starring George Burns. John Denver was the driver, and the interior car was flooded during the course of the movie, when God (Burns) was trying to prove to John Denver's character that he was really God. Image courtesy of ArcticBoy. More images of this Pacer are available on his web site.

Car WashCar Wash
Car Wash, 1976.
Jive-talkin' car wash employees cleaned a brown Pacer sedan, while a guy in a body cast sits in the passenger's seat. (Thanks to Shashi Jain for spotting this one.)

L'aile ou la cuisse ("The Wing or the Thigh" - France), 1976.
"This is a comedy-movie about a father (Louis de Funes), famous 'gastronome' writing guides on 'la bonne cuisine française', and his son (Coluche) whose dream is to become a...clown. There's a clash between the two protagonists and blah blah blah, happy end and all that sort of things. Guess what type of car the son is driving? Boum! A Pacer! I do not really know the type but the interior is the indian-like pattern stuff." -Michael Bialkowski

Un éléphant ça trompe énormément, 1976.
This movie contains a Pacer. Thanks to Guilh Alric for spotting this one.

The Killer Elite, 1975. (YouTube)
A scene in this movie depicts shooters on a rooftop, next to an AMC Pacer introduction billboard, which is featured prominently throughout the scene.


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