I love Rat Race. I was ten when it came out and it quickly became a favorite for me and my brother to watch over and over again. I just rewatched it and, great news, it holds up well. I still love it.
I just wanna be clear that the reason for this list is not to disparage Rat Race or anyone involved in Rat Race in any way. Nothing on this list impaired my enjoyment of the movie even slightly. I don’t know what the reason for this list is. I just felt compelled.
Anyway, here are some plot points in Rat Race that I had some questions about. A lot of these might be too nitpicky and a lot of these can be answered with “well, if it wasn’t for that, there wouldn’t be a movie” but here they are.
- There’s too many things happening in New Mexico at once. They’re breaking the land speed record, there’s a monster truck rally, an “I Love Lucy” convention, some hot air balloon thing, a tribute to WWII veterans, and, if that’s not enough, a “Feed The Earth” Smash Mouth Benefit concert?! Maybe I’m biased against New Mexico but it seems like a little too much for New Mexico on one day.
- How complicated is the drive to Silver City, NM? I know this is pre-GPS cell phone times but none of them could stay on the highway to get to Silver City? They all had to go on some different back dirt road and get lost? C’mon. It’s a race. Stay on the highway.
- They’re betting that much money to not watch them race? Yeah, I know they have the tracker devices but it must be pretty unsatisfying to just see the dot on the screen you bet on get kinda closer to Silver City. They couldn’t put cameras at the train station for the photo finish? Or just be there instead of getting the play-by-play from Dave Thomas? They were only a short flight away. It took them the same amount of time to get to the Smash Mouth concert by plane from Vegas as it took the rest to get there from the train station.
- Where are the Lucys coming from? Going back to the Lucy convention, according to IMDb trivia, it’s based on a real convention. And since “I Love Lucy” is a huge show, I can believe it has a serious fan base. So I can believe a lot of people dressed as Lucy or Ricky or Fred might come to this convention. But all the Lucys in Rat Race were coming from the same place. What is this place? And why are there that many hardcore Lucy fans there that they needed to get a bus?
- Why did they get the tour at the Barbie Museum? Okay, ha ha ha, the girl wanted to go to the Barbie Museum and everyone thought it was for the doll but it was for Klaus Barbie the Nazi. But there’s definitely hints outside the place that it’s not a doll museum (like the swastikas). They had to go past all the swastikas, go inside to see more swastikas, have a skinhead tell them when the next tour is, and then go on the tour. If you’re thinking maybe they were too scared to back out, don’t forget they interrupted the tour to leave. Way worse.
- Who rented Afro Whores 3? Not a plothole but I’ve always wondered what is the truth behind the Afro Whores thing. I know that a lot of the comedy in that scene is from the black family standing behind him but I still wanna know… did he rent it and lie about it because he was embarrassed? Did someone from the bachelor party he was at watch it? But eleven times? In his room? Was it just an absurd thing that happened, like a computer error? But they did say someone switched on The Grinch That Stole Christmas for ten minutes. I don’t know.
- They didn’t know Mr. Bean was narcoleptic? If they were legit betting a lot of money on this rat race, it should’ve been disclosed to everyone that there was a narcoleptic in the bunch. John Cleese clearly did a lot of research and knew a lot of information about them. He knew Whoopi Goldberg was that other women’s mom. He even knew that Breckin Meyer’s character flaw was playing it safe. But not this guy’s serious medical condition?
- How the fuck did John Cleese know that Breckin Meyer’s character flaw was playing it safe? He obviously did some background check on all of them and that’s the scoop he got on Meyer?
- Cuba gets the same cabbie twice. The cabbie drops Cuba off at the airport, realizes that Cuba is that ref, and then when Cuba gets back into his cab, leaves Cuba stranded nearly naked in the desert. But what are the odds of Cuba getting into the same cab? I mean this is Las Vegas’s airport, it’s probably pretty busy. And they just canceled all the flights! Probably a lot of cab demands going around.
- Cuba didn’t have to rip his bus uniform off. When Cuba reveales to the Lucys that he’s not a real bus driver, they think he’s just being hard on himself. So the only way he could make his point that he wasn’t an actual bus driver was to rip off all his clothes except his underwear. He was already in a terrible clothes-less situation in the desert earlier that day and I don’t see any reason why he would have to put himself back in that predicament.
- Seth Green and his brother didn’t get arrested for the airport thing. I know this is one of those pre-9/11 comedies but c’mon. The cops don’t even question them about what they did? And what about that cop who didn’t realize Amy Smart and Breckin Meyer were siphoning gas from him and was weirdly okay with Breckin Meyer peeing in public like that.
- They didn’t tell the police about the squirrel lady. Speaking of cops, Whoopi and her daughter never told them about this squirrel lady that’s killing people left and right. I know the movie ends at the end of the race and they still might after, but I just feel like they weren’t going to.
- That hooker was too expensive. Sorry but I’m not paying three thousand dollars to get naked with some hooker, put on sailor hats, get into a jacuzzi filled with Pepto-Bism0l, clip her toe nails, and have her shave my buttocks. That’s not even intercourse. That can’t be more than a few hundred dollars.
- They’re both reading Lindbergh’s biography. They’re both reading Lindbergh’s biography?! They’re BOTH reading LINDBERGH’S BIOGRAPHY?! BOTH Breckin Meyer AND Amy Smart are reading the SAME LINDBERGH BIOGRAPHY?!
- How did the locksmith know that’s the bag of money? So remember how Seth Green and his brother wanted to get a copy of the locker key and the locksmith overheard the bit about the two million dollars in the locker and stole the locker key? And they chase him and they get the key back but he (and a cow) end up in a hot air balloon? Anyway, after Dave Thomas and the hooker steal the bag of money and make a run for it, the locksmith and cow and hot air balloon land on their car. At first, the locksmith is just trying to hold on to the car for dear life but, after just a beat, he sees the duffel bag and immediately goes for it. But he’s never seen Dave Thomas or the hooker so how does he know that’s the money?!
That’s all I got. Please let me know if you think of more.