The Vintagent Classics: The films that inspired us.


Run Time: 1:19:00
Director: Laslo Benedek
Writer: Tom Paxton (script), Frank Rooney (based on a story by)
Key Cast: Marlon Brando, Mary Murphy, Lee Marvin,


Marlon Brando! Driven Too Far By His Own Hot Blood!

Almost a decade after veterans returned from war with a new found passion for bikes (and specifically slimmed down, bob jobs like they’d grown used to riding in the field) and also just a few years after the riots at Hollister, Hollywood introduces the first film with motorcycles as a central character. Released in 1953, it was based on a short story, The Cyclists’ Raid, by Frank Rooney, published in the January 1951 issue of Harper’s Magazine.


The Wild One featured the newest threat to society, the biker, replacing the Cagneys of the 30s gangster films, and instilled the allure of a new misunderstood anti-hero. The film’s plot revolves around a motorcycle club split in two over an unexplained riff, and it’s the motorcycles that most clearly illustrates the split of the gang. Marlon Brando epitomized a new cool in his perfectly rebellious uniform of black leather, cuffed jeans, t-shirt, engineer boots and riding a stock 1950 Triumph Thunderbird T6 as leader of the BRMC. But, it was Lee Marvin in his bold stripes, aviator goggles, chewing on stogie while draped over a ’49 flathead/’50 panhead? Bobber as the leader of The Beatles, who made us fall in love with the bad boy. The disenfranchised, yet relatively harmless youth ride stock and polished modern motorcycles as BRMC, while the more rough and tumble
bad boys of The Beatles ride post WWII minimalist bobbers. This is the first film where we see the customization of motorcycles and if the bobber is the origin of the chopper, this is the first celluloid step to the chopper film. – Paul d’Orleans, The Chopper: The Real Story


Watch the FULL FILM