• C.C. and Company

    Released by: Cheezy Flicks
    Released on: 12/5/2006
    Director: Seymour Robbie
    Cast: Joe Namath, Ann-Margret, William Smith, Sid Haig
    Year: 1970
    Purchase from Amazon

    The Movie:
    Football legend Joe Namath made the leap from quarterback to kind-of-act with this fun little clunker of a drive-in movie about a free-spirited biker and his split-up with the gang he ran with, “The Heads”. Led by one of the baddest fuckers ever to punch someone out on screen, William Smith (as the sleazy and horribly intimidating Moon), who’s not happy with the way C.C. (Namath of course) has been acting lately. Seems he kept a couple of the club members (Sid Haig is one of them) from having some non-consensual fun with the lovely Ann McCalley (Ann-Margret), after they find her in her broken-down limo on the side of the road. The righteous C.C. kicks their asses and earns the affection of Ann.

    It turns out Ann is some sort of photoshoot designer and is doing a piece on a dirt bike race nearby. One thing leads to another and before you know it, C.C. is winning a race. He wants out of the gang and pays his dues to Moon in the form of some big prize money, but hold on C.C.; Moon knows you didn’t give it all to him. And when he tells C.C. to fork over the rest of the prize money he knows C.C. is withholding, things go south. Fights ensue, kidnapping shows its face, and it all comes down to a chopper race between C.C. and Moon to straighten things out.

    While not part of the upper crust in the realm of classic biker flicks, C.C. and Company manages to hold its own as an entertaining and cool little movie. Right from the opening scene where C.C. makes his lunch in a grocery store and walks out paying for a 10-cent pack of gum, to the end scene where he obeys the law of the red light to show he’s not a bad guy after all. Although there’s some slow moments for character building, specifically with C.C. and Ann (montage included), there’s plenty of motorcycle action, dirt bike racing, and rowdy bikers to more than make up for it. Namath does a good enough job in the lead to be likeable (if not really believable) and Ann-Margret is just at her physical peak here, giving us a little tan-with-the-top-undone-while-laying-on-the-stomach action which is nice. With the awful picture this disc brings you can’t see the nips, even using frame-by-frame (yes of course it was checked), but it’s pretty sexy nonetheless. It’s cool to see Sid Haig pop up before he was doing the stuff he’s more recognized for, like the Philippine’s movies, and he comes across as pretty bad-ass himself. Look for Ralph the Doorman from The Jeffersons (Ned Wertimer) and the annoying as all-fuck Teda Bracci (The Big Bird Cage) as the aptly named pig. Jesus is she ever annoying and is on camera WAY too much, but thankfully not that often. The only thing this movie could have done better on was the choice of music. It seems to be designed to keep the movie from being to serious and it really suffers for it. If the movie was allowed to be a bit more dramatic and played for tension it could have been something a lot greater than it already is. But, it was understandably PG so the kiddies could see Broadway Joe in a movie, so keeping it a bit on the light side is forgivable. Then it probably seemed the thing to do, but 40 years later it works against the film.

    And then there’s William Smith. Why this man wasn’t an even bigger name is beyond understanding. Check out some of the items in his IMDB bio. Bruce Lee himself offered him the John Saxon role in Enter the Dragon. He has a 31-1 record as an amateur boxer, not to mention other fitness achievements. He was cast as an Asian villain in Kung Fu, but it was decided he was too muscular and menacing for the role. He turned down the MGM role of Tarzan (that is bad-ass…aint no way he’s going to parade around in a loin cloth swinging from a rope). The man did over 5,000 continuous sit-ups in five hours and raced Steve McQueen in motocross. He speaks Russian, German, French, and like all the other languages. Norris? Informercials. Segal? Reality shows and cheeseburgers. Schwarzenegger? William Smith was his FATHER for God’s sake (Conan). He even let Clint Eastwood beat him up in Any Which Way You Can (there is no WAY that fight wouldn’t have ended with Smith eating Clint’s nutsack if it was a real fight). Thankfully he’s got a lot of screen credits, so there’s plenty of Mr. Smith to go around. All those hip directors who use old genre stars need to pay him some respect and get him in a meaty role.

    Sadly, C.C. and Company is a public domain title, so anyone can release it on disc, which means no one has given it any restoration love. The source used on this release is awful, and it looks like a shitty tape with absolutely no work done to it. At one spot it looks like there's a tracking issue (picture below). There’s no sense even discussing it further. Someone like HD Cinema Classics ought to put some love into this flick. Everyone is still alive, and there has to be some cool stories attached to the production. The audio is on the same level and the video, which is classifiable as shitty tape quality. Extras? A reel of trailers for other Cheezy releases and a couple of drive-in intermission pieces.

    The Final Word:
    A fun movie that deserves better treatment than it’s gotten in the DVD world. Even if you have it in some Mill Creek collection, it’s worth plunking down the measly few bucks it costs on Amazon and grabbing it to have on the shelf.

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