Chrome Hearts – Reviewed by Skids Poppe
All right, it happened again. I’m not proud of it, but I, Skids Poppe, got suckered once more by those slick sludge heads manufacturing motorcycle movies. What can I say? I mean, I took some time off from watching the vids, thought I’d try and get some perspective back. Did it work? I’d say not.
I know, you’re all out there saying “Skids, what happened? Can it really be that bad?” The answer is yes…and no. See, I found this film called Chrome Hearts at the store and the cover looks real good. So what if it’s got a small picture of Joe Namath on the cover. His ugly, panty-hose wearing mug is right next to Ann-Margret‘s so I shouldn’t complain, right? That was my first mistake.
I look at the back and discover Mr. Namath is playing the legendary biker hero, C.C. Ryder (kinda like Paul Bunyon and the loggers or Mighty Casey and baseball). Great. From the looks of things, ole C.C. is gonna take on a group of evil bikers and win the hand of Miss -Margaret in the process. This doesn’t sound too bad. We can always use a pop icon to bolster the image of the crazed motorcyclist rebel who really has a heart of gold, can’t we? Certainly makes our jobs a lot easier if the general public is trusting. So far, so good. The bottom of the box has the copyright date: MCMLXXXIX. Thankfully, I can read Greek. That means 1989, which was only a few years ago. At this point, Chrome Hearts has everything going for it. Second mistake.
That’s right. The box was done in ’89, the film was done sometime in the “God Bless My Wide Lapels” ’70s. Not a good decade. If you don’t know what was wrong with it, watch this film.
Not that the film was bad, mind you. It wasn’t good, but I don’t know if I would call it bad. The plot was okay: Biker loner saves damsel in distress, upsets gang leader, and becomes a motocross racer for Kawasaki. Typical. No…the problems come with the image presented. What, you actually want an example? All right, but don’t say I didn’t warn you.
The alleged good guy, a racer, spots our gang (The Heads) on a hill over-looking the race track. He points and tells Ann: “That’s what’s giving motorcycling a bad name.” Then, two scenes later, this same guy is getting on his Kawasaki dirt bike wearing lime green, two piece racing leathers. He looks like a bad lounge singer in a helmet. That is what’s giving motorcycling a bad name.
Anyway, Namath wins the girl, gets the money and kicks ass during the final race sequence with Moon, the head Head. But the best thing about this film is the supporting cast. William Smith, who plays Moon, has been playing a biker for so long I think his agent owns stock in Harley-Davidson. And the girls. The girls are great. These are a bunch of biker babes guaranteed to make life worth living. Not only are they more attractive then the typical girls in films like these, but they would be a proud addition to the back of any real rider’s bike.
Not the best film about a legend, but it certainly ain’t the worst.
Skids dedicates this column to the firefighters of America, just because.