Cheech and Chong's Next Movie (1980)

R | 95 mins | Comedy | 18 July 1980

Director:

Thomas Chong

Producer:

Howard Brown

Cinematographer:

King Baggot

Editor:

Tom Avildsen

Production Designer:

Fred Harpman

Production Companies:

Universal Pictures , C & C Brown Productions, Inc.
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HISTORY

       A 30 Jun 1980 Box article reported that comedians Cheech Marin and Tommy Chong felt stifled by the creative control of Lou Adler, the producer and director of their first movie Cheech & Chong's Up In Smoke (1978, see entry), despite it’s overwhelming financial success. To get more control over their second effort, Chong assumed the role of director. Their first movie earned $104 million worldwide, and the actor-comedians could have poured more money into their next film, but the decision was made to stick to a modest $3.2 million budget.
       While taking on the challenge of directing, Chong became familiar with some of the more uncomfortable aspects of the job. In the space ship scene, he used several members of his family as actors and Chong’s son was particularly proud of his small contribution. However, when it came time for editing, Chong was heartbroken to find that the scene slowed the pace of the film and had to be cut.
       According to production notes in AMPAS library files, the comedy team’s acting style was improvisational and they looked for supporting cast members that worked the same way. Chong scouted several improvisational theater groups and attended five shows performed by Los Angeles comedy troupe, The Groundlings, "before casting them in [the] film.”
       Reviews were mixed. David Ansen of Newsweek enjoyed the film's shameless humor that never took itself seriously and described the film’s “hang-loose spirit" as "infectious.” Vincent Canby of the NYT remarked that even though the film felt like a collage of “rude” and “slapdash” comedy sketches strung together, it was also “frequently hilarious.” In his ...

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       A 30 Jun 1980 Box article reported that comedians Cheech Marin and Tommy Chong felt stifled by the creative control of Lou Adler, the producer and director of their first movie Cheech & Chong's Up In Smoke (1978, see entry), despite it’s overwhelming financial success. To get more control over their second effort, Chong assumed the role of director. Their first movie earned $104 million worldwide, and the actor-comedians could have poured more money into their next film, but the decision was made to stick to a modest $3.2 million budget.
       While taking on the challenge of directing, Chong became familiar with some of the more uncomfortable aspects of the job. In the space ship scene, he used several members of his family as actors and Chong’s son was particularly proud of his small contribution. However, when it came time for editing, Chong was heartbroken to find that the scene slowed the pace of the film and had to be cut.
       According to production notes in AMPAS library files, the comedy team’s acting style was improvisational and they looked for supporting cast members that worked the same way. Chong scouted several improvisational theater groups and attended five shows performed by Los Angeles comedy troupe, The Groundlings, "before casting them in [the] film.”
       Reviews were mixed. David Ansen of Newsweek enjoyed the film's shameless humor that never took itself seriously and described the film’s “hang-loose spirit" as "infectious.” Vincent Canby of the NYT remarked that even though the film felt like a collage of “rude” and “slapdash” comedy sketches strung together, it was also “frequently hilarious.” In his 18 Jul 1980 review, critic Peter Ranier of the LAHExam deemed the drug humor "dated," and the characters wearisome. In another negative review, the 11 Aug 1980 New York magazine reviewer blamed Chong's direction for the film’s uneven pace, klutzy routines and “wretchedly clumsy slapstick.”


      The following note appears on a title card before the end credits of the film: “That’s it man!”

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SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Box Office
30 Jun 1980
p. 1, 5
Daily Variety
19 Dec 1979
---
Hollywood Reporter
18 Jul 1980
p, 3, 18
LAHExam
18 Jul 1980
Section D, p. 4
Los Angeles Times
18 Jul 1980
p. 6
New York
11 Aug 1980
---
New York Times
19 Jul 1980
p. 8
Newsweek
11 Aug 1980
---
Variety
23 Jul 1980
p. 18
CAST
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
Co-Starring
and Introducing
Massage girls:
Cops at hotel:
+
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
1st asst dir
2d asst dir
Asst dir trainee
PRODUCERS
WRITERS
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
Cam op
Asst cam
Gaffer
Key grip
Cam asst
2d grip
Dolly grip
Best boy
Best boy
Still photog
ART DIRECTOR
Prod des
FILM EDITORS
Film ed
Asst film ed
SET DECORATORS
Set dec
Prop master
Leadman
Asst prop master
Paint foreman
Const coord
COSTUMES
Cost des
Cost supv
Cost supv
MUSIC
Orig music by
Orig mus performed by
Addl mus by
Guitar solos by
Main title performed by
Mus coord
SOUND
Sd re-rec
Sd re-rec
Sd eff ed
Loop dial ed
Boom man
Cableman
VISUAL EFFECTS
Spec visual eff by
Matte photog
Spec laser eff by
Laser consultant
Space ship miniatures
Title & opt eff
Spec eff
DANCE
Choreog
MAKEUP
Makeup
Hairstylist
PRODUCTION MISC
Scr supv
Asst to prod
Casting
Casting
Prod assoc
Transportation capt
Kool Lusby
Prod assoc
Exec prod's secy
Prod asst
Prod asst
Wrangler
Cocapt
Driver
Driver
Driver
Driver
STAND INS
Stunt coord
Stunts
Stunts
Stunts
ANIMATION
Anim
SOURCES
SONGS
“Tequila,” performed by The Champs, written by Chuck Rio, courtesy of Hi-Oldies Records; “Macho Man,” performed by The Village People, written by Henri Belolo, Jacques Morali, Peter Whitehead, Victor Edward Willis, courtesy of Casablanca Records; “Hit the Road Jack,” performed by Ray Charles, written by Percy Mayfield, courtesy of Crossover Records Co.; “Cross the Tracks,” performed and written by Joe Houston, courtesy of Combo Records, “Space Invader,” performed by The Pretenders, written by Pete Farndon and James Honeyman-Scott, courtesy of Sire Records.
SONGWRITERS/COMPOSERS
+
DETAILS
Alternate Titles:
Cheech & Chong Go Hollyweed
Cheech & Chong Go to Hollywood
High Encounters (of the Ultimate Kind)
Release Date:
18 July 1980
Premiere Information:
Los Angeles and New York openings: 18 Jul 1980
Production Date:

Copyright Info
Claimant
Date
Copyright Number
Universal City Studios, Inc.
25 July 1980
PA78158
Physical Properties:
Color
Color by Technicolor®
Lenses/Prints
Panaflex® lenses and camera by Panavision®
Duration(in mins):
95
MPAA Rating:
R
Country:
United States
Language:
English
PCA No:
25966
SYNOPSIS

Cheech and Chong carry a metal trashcan down a Los Angeles street to collect gasoline that they siphon from a truck. Then, they pour the stolen gas into a yellow Thunderbird and drive off. As Chong lights a marijuana cigarette, the gas fumes catch fire, turning everything inside the car black. At the film studio where Cheech works, he walks on the lot with his torn, sooty clothes and the guard asks for his pass. He replies he is filming The Towering Inferno and the guard waves him in. Meanwhile, Chong sneaks his neighbor’s stolen Thunderbird back into the garage and replaces the car cover. Cheech returns home in a van. Soon, Cheech and Chong decorate the van with fur on the dashboard and turn it into a low rider cruising vehicle. In the morning, Cheech peers out the window and panics when he notices that the van he borrowed without permission has been stolen. While he figures out what to do, his boss calls to tell him he has the van back and Cheech is fired. At the welfare office, the two friends bypass the crowds when Cheech’s girlfriend Donna, a welfare clerk, processes them in a private office. While Chong waits, Cheech has sex with Donna on the office floor. Donna’s supervisor walks in and breaks up the party. Later, Donna calls Cheech and wants to see him. Cheech tells Chong to leave so he can clean the house before Donna arrives. Cheech gets a phone call from ...

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Cheech and Chong carry a metal trashcan down a Los Angeles street to collect gasoline that they siphon from a truck. Then, they pour the stolen gas into a yellow Thunderbird and drive off. As Chong lights a marijuana cigarette, the gas fumes catch fire, turning everything inside the car black. At the film studio where Cheech works, he walks on the lot with his torn, sooty clothes and the guard asks for his pass. He replies he is filming The Towering Inferno and the guard waves him in. Meanwhile, Chong sneaks his neighbor’s stolen Thunderbird back into the garage and replaces the car cover. Cheech returns home in a van. Soon, Cheech and Chong decorate the van with fur on the dashboard and turn it into a low rider cruising vehicle. In the morning, Cheech peers out the window and panics when he notices that the van he borrowed without permission has been stolen. While he figures out what to do, his boss calls to tell him he has the van back and Cheech is fired. At the welfare office, the two friends bypass the crowds when Cheech’s girlfriend Donna, a welfare clerk, processes them in a private office. While Chong waits, Cheech has sex with Donna on the office floor. Donna’s supervisor walks in and breaks up the party. Later, Donna calls Cheech and wants to see him. Cheech tells Chong to leave so he can clean the house before Donna arrives. Cheech gets a phone call from his cousin Red who is visiting from Texas. He persuades Chong to party with Red at his hotel. There, Chong finds Red arguing with desk clerk Pee Wee Herman about the bill. Red misunderstood the hotel’s rates and the clerk is holding his luggage ransom until he pays. Chong and Red break into the wrong hotel room looking for Red’s luggage and interrupt a couple in the middle of lovemaking. The couple alerts the manager who calls the police. Meanwhile, they find the luggage, which includes a duffle bag full of fresh-picked marijuana buds. Chong estimates that Red’s stash is worth $50,000. When several police units surround the hotel, Red tape records the sounds of the police sirens and an officer talking on a bullhorn that he can use later to scare the deer when he goes back home. When the agitated hotel clerk identifies Chong and Red, he is arrested instead. On Hollywood Boulevard, a pretty girl in yellow satin shorts on roller blades invites the guys to a party at an Oriental massage parlor. At the parlor, Chong and Red soak in a hot tub as Chong smokes a gigantic marijuana cigarette. Soon, Red chases a massage girl down a hallway and discovers "Chicken Charlie," a customer wearing a bustier over his business clothes and crowing like a rooster at Candy, a hog-tied massage girl. Chong, Red, and Candy are kicked out of the establishment and as they leave, Red hears sounds of passion from behind a closed door and turns on his tape recorder. However, instead of pushing the record button, he hits play and a riot ensues when the customers and the staff hear the voice of an officer on a bullhorn telling them they are under arrest. Soon, Chong, Red, and Candy pile into a convertible sports car parked outside a music store. The driver takes them to Candy's mansion and introduces them to her mother, who mistakes the guests for trick-or-treaters. Mom invites the guests to dinner and her husband, who happens to be Charlie from the massage parlor, finds them at his dining table. After dinner, everyone smokes marijuana and Red takes them to the Comedy House. Red heckles a comedian who happens to be desk clerk Pee Wee Herman from Red’s former hotel. Pee Wee invites Red on stage, where he entertains the crowd. Before long, Pee Wee convinces the club’s bouncer to toss out Red and Chong. The audience gets pulled into the ensuing melee. Outside, the owner of a Corvette thinks Red is a valet and gives him the keys to the car. Red and Chong go on a joy ride around town. Meanwhile, Cheech has finished his ironing and waits patiently for Donna. He dreams that she dresses in a fur-trimmed red negligee as he approaches her in a snappy zoot suit ready to seduce her. When the real Donna knocks on the door, he yells out in his sleep, “Get out of here.” She leaves and when he wakes he wonders why she hasn’t stopped by. Soon, the police chase Chong and Red through canyon roads and crash their patrol car. Suddenly, a space ship appears and sucks Chong and Red into the sky. Chong, dressed in biker leather, wakes Cheech and tells him a fantastic story about being sucked up by a space ship and offers his friend space cocaine to snort. The cocaine gives Cheech super strength and he crashes through a wall and destroys the neighbor’s house. Fueled by space cocaine, the two friends fly toward a giant animated marijuana cigarette in the sky.

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Legend
Viewed by AFI
Partially Viewed
Offscreen Credit
Name Occurs Before Title
AFI Life Achievement Award

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