Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Another first inkling

Back in the early 1980s, you could "rent" a video recorder from the Redifusion electricity shop in Peterlee town centre where I had the joint fortune and misfortune to grow up. You could also go into the back room in the shop to pursue a tiny selection of videos that could also be rented overnight - they came in huge bulky cases. Some of these included Scanners, The Smurfs and the Magic Flute, Hands of the Ripper and Convoy. The one I was most fascinated with (and never got to see as my parents mainly got to choose the films) was this one.



This was the first time that I had ever seen two men in the same bed together with no clothes on, and being 8 years old, this was a revelation to me. Never mind that it was Elliott Gould who, with his hairy back, helmet hair and slightly equine features is about as sexy as British Airways strike action. I still wanted to see this film. There's something very simple and symmetrical about the title. And that front cover does hold a lot of promise.

Anyway, decades later, I finally got it on DVD and watched it the other night. How disappointing. Basically everyone talks a lot and very little sex happens. They do get into bed at the end and start (heterosexual) kissing, but it all goes a bit wrong and they end up wandering around the streets while Burt Bacharach's "What the World Needs Now Is Love Sweet Love" plays in the background. The idea of some films is sometimes better than the film itself.

I normally hate remakes, but in this case a bolder remake should be undertaken, preferably one called Bob and Harold and Ted and Alistair.

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