Greatest Film Scenes
and Moments

The Love Bug (1968)


Written by Tim Dirks

Title Screen
Movie Title/Year and Scene Descriptions

The Love Bug (1968)

In Disney's very popular and charming family comedy film (Walt's last live-action film!) about a remarkable 1963 fabric-topped, white-colored VW Beetle - the first in a series of remakes and a TV series, including four full-length feature film sequels (with the car's name "Herbie"): Herbie Rides Again (1974), Herbie Goes to Monte Carlo (1977), Herbie Goes Bananas (1980), and the remake Herbie: Fully Loaded (2005) (starring Lindsay Lohan, Michael Keaton, and Matt Dillon):

  • the film's tagline, reflecting the late 60s and Herbie's anthropomorphic abilities: "It's a Love-in for Herbie... the incredible little car who shifts for himself!"
  • the early scene of a used VW's (later named Herbie) first appearance in the car showroom of an upscale European car dealership, owned by British race driver Peter Thorndyke (David Tomlinson), with his attractive sales assistant/secretary Carole Bennett (Michele Lee); customer Jim Douglas (Dean Jones) admitted that he was looking for "cheap, honest transportation"; Herbie affectionately bumped Jim the leg, but Thorndyke despised the low-cost car - he kicked the car, called it an "eyesore," and ordered it removed
  • the discovery of Herbie parked outside the lodgings on San Francisco Bay of unlucky, bachelor race-car driver Jim the morning after he had visited Thorndyke's car dealership; the car had driven itself to Jim's home; Jim's eccentric mechanic friend and roommate Tennessee Steinmetz (Buddy Hackett) called the car "a cute little fella"; Jim asked: "How did that little car get here?" - nonetheless, he was suspected of "grand theft" and was obligated to return Herbie to the dealership
  • the scene of Jim's test drive with Carole to check out the car's driveability; when Jim took over the driving, the car demonstrated its speed and magical trick capabilities; the car refused to let Carole out of the car, forced them to have a date, and drove the couple to a drive-in; Carole was locked into the car and shouted for help from some hippies in a nearby psychedelic van: "Help, I'm a prisoner, I can't get out"; one of the hippies (Dean Jones in disguise) replied: "We all prisoners, chickie-baby. We all locked in (he turned to his partner) A couple of weirdos, Guinevere!"; when Carole tried to get out the driver's side, she ended up in Jim's lap, and the loud-mouthed drive-in carhop (Iris Adrian) cautioned them: "Hey, knock it off, will ya, Sis; I ain't sayin' this is the classiest joint in town, but we gotta draw the line somewhere. Come on, back in your seat. Why don't you go up to Seabreeze Point? Fuzz don't bother ya much up there"
"I'm a prisoner"
"We all prisoners"
Drive-In Car Hop: "Knock it off, will ya, Sis!"
  • Jim's praise to Tennessee about the "something special" Herbie: "This baby happens to have an extra turn of speed which is the only thing I care about....I may be kidding myself, but I think I can make something out of that sad bucket of bolts"
  • the budding romance between Carole and Jim - encouraged by Herbie
  • Herbie's jealousy and anger over Jim's acquisition of a new Lamborghini 400GT in exchange for Herbie; and Herbie's suicidal threat to drive off the Golden Gate Bridge
Herbie's Suicidal Threat To Drive Off The Golden Gate Bridge
  • the iconic scene of Herbie skipping or skimming across the surface of a body of water during a race
  • the subsequent races at California raceways between Thorndyke and Jim's "Herbie" - to win the VW back, culminating in a major race known as the "El Dorado" (traveling round-trip from Yosemite in California to Virginia City in Nevada); in the climactic race to the finish-line, Herbie split and elongated his body into two and was able to be victorious - taking both 1st and 3rd places
Victory at El Dorado
  • the happy ending - a wedding and honeymoon for Carole and Jim (chauffeured and driven in the back seat by Herbie); when Tennessee asked where the couple was going, Jim answered: "We don't know. Herb hasn't told us yet. Let's go, Herbie"

Car Dealership Owner Peter Thorndyke
(David Tomlinson)

Thorndyke's Sales Assistant Carole (Michele Lee)

"Love Bug" (Herbie) Nudging Jim's Legs in Showroom

Thorndyke Kicking The VW and Considering it an "Eyesore"

Speedy Test Drive

Jim with Friend/Mechanic Tennessee

Herbie Skimming Over Surface of a Lake

Herbie's Car Races

Enroute to Honeymoon


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