In 1973 (or was it '74?), I was knocked out by an obscure movie for the second time in my short life. Certainly Electra Glide in Blue kicked started me into law enforcement but more importantly it introduced me to the adult world of bullshit.
Robert Blake's, John Wintergreen is a motorcycle cop who longs for a detective's badge telling his buddy, Zipper, "I hate that motorcycle they make me ride. I'm here to tell you there's nothing I hate worse than that elephant under my ass."
Zipper (Billy Green Bush) is his pal on the force who's only too happy to avoid the heat and any taxation of his mind unless it presents itself as female. Zipper reminds me of 90% of the folks I worked with in law enforcement. Wintergreen gets a shot at a promotion by driving for a blow hard detective (Mitch Ryan as Harve Poole) who can't shut up and who, we later learn, can't get it up for his bartender girlfriend Jolene played by Jeannine Riley who screams 70's tight jeans and halter tops.
When someone is all knowing - - it's usually because they don't know anything. The guy to listen to is always the guy who isn't talking. And it's usually best just to watch him. John Wintergreen is able to see the detective for what he is - incompetent. He calls him on it resulting in his getting sent straight back to the elephant culminating in a surprising ending over what may be the longest credit roll in cinema history.
The story is... who cares about the story. It's a Man's Movie and men don't give a pooh about story. This is about characters and images that stun to me to this day. From the opening credits to the scenes of Monument Valley...it's nothing short of an opera. DP'ed by Conrad Hall (check out, 'Tell Them Who You Are') and produced by James William Guercio (Chicago & The Beach Boys) who also authored it's haunting score, it is one of the great and sadly overlooked pictures of the 70's.