A Night in Heaven (1983)

John G. Avildsen had an interesting career. There are movies like Rocky and three Karate Kid films, along with Save the TigerW.W. and the Dixie DancekingsLean on MeNeighbors and this 1983 kind sorta coming of age film.

Rick Malone (Christopher Atkins) is one of the more popular students at his college and used to getting away with just about everything. However, when he makes a joke of his speech professor Faye Hanlon’s (Lesley Ann Warren) final, she fails him and forces him to take the class again.

Faye and her husband Whitney are going through a rough patch after he gets laid off, so when her sister suggests that they go to a strip club, she jumps at the opportunity. There, she watches Ricky the Rocket perform and realizes that he’s her student. Of course, she’s soon going to be cattle-prodding the oyster ditch with the lap rocket, as they say, with Ricky so that he can get his grades up.

Of course, this is going to end with Faye’s husband shooting at Ricky on a boat dock while demanding that he strip. So, there’s that.

The movie itself may not be much, but the soundtrack has all sorts of great stuff on it, like Jan Hammer composing much of the music, along with Bryan Adams’ “Heaven” and “Obsession” by Holly Knight and Michael Des Barres. That song would be covered a year later by Animotion and become a much bigger song.

Deney Terrio, the man who taught Travolta to dance in Saturday Night Fever, the man who hosted Dance Fever, the man who sued Merv Griffith for sexual harassment, the man who sued Hasbro for making a Littlest Pet Shop gecko disco character named Vinnie Terrio is also the man who appears in this film.

Also, for those who care about these kinds of things — you know who you are — Atkins has no underwear on for his love scenes.

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