The actual date for the release of this movie is under some debate, as director Robert Altman — yes, the same one who did Nashville — shot the film in 1983, it was copyrighted in 1985, then shelved until it got a small theatrical release in 1987 and 1988.
Now, we could debate whether Altman is the right person to shoot a National Lampoon magazine, but then again, I kind of like this movie, which has a ramshackle all over the place feel to it.
Loosely based on stories written by Ted Mann and Tod Carroll. O.C. and Stiggs were recurring characters in the magazine, with the entire October 1982 issue being about “The Utterly Monstrous Mind-Roasting Summer of O.C. and Stiggs.” One of the big differences is that the print version of the characters are destructive while their film versions are a little more socially redeemable.
O.C., which means Oliver Cromwell Oglivie (Daniel H. Jenkins), and Stiggs (Neill Barry) are two Arizona teens whose idea of a great night is driving their car, the Gila Monster, to pick up girls, get booze from Wino Bob (Melvin van Peebles) and pick up some ladies. And oh yeah, drive the Schwab family — Randall (Paul Dooley), Elinore (Jane Curtin), Randall Jr. (Jon Cryer) and Lenore (Laura Urstein) — nuts.
Altman’s argument is that while audiences to see his take on Porky’s, he saw through the fake outrage in those movies and was delivering a satire. But yeah. No one else wanted that. As the director himself said, “It was a satire of teen sex comedies, gosh darn it, not an example of that dubious breed!”
But hey! Ray Walston is great as always as Gramps and it’s kinda inspired to get Dennis Hopper to be in one of these movies. He even flies his helicopter so Mark can woo Cynthia Nixon.
It’s kind of fascinating to me that this movie was even made and that’s pretty much the charm of it.