“Thunder Road” (1958)
Beyond “Blinded by the Light,” Springsteen has always professed a huge appreciation for grittier dramas. In 2017, Springsteen sat down with “Philadelphia” star Tom Hanks at the Tribeca Film Festival to chat about a wide range of subjects, including some of his favorite films. No surprise here: he named Robert Mitchum’s “Thunder Road,” which inspired the title of a Springsteen song of the same name, as one of the formative pictures of his life.
Of the film, which follows Mitchum’s Lucas Doolin as he returns to America after the Korean War and gets involved in bootlegging to save his family, Springsteen said, “It’s a great noir picture, and I saw all of those at the time. So a lot of it came out of that.”