6 November 2017 | Red-Barracuda
New balls please
Jocks is a production from those purveyors of good taste, Crown International Pictures. In fairness, these guys were responsible for some good movies but most of them came out in the 70's when they put their hand to trends of the day that seemed to work better for them. By the 80's though it appeared to be low budget comedies all the way, and it would not be uncharitable to describe a lot of these as being 'uneven'. Jocks is an example of one of the cinematic staples of the day - the teen sex comedy. Except, there really isn't all that much sex but there is a lot of...tennis. A college sports coach must get a group of misfits under his charge up to a good enough standard to win a tennis tournament in Las Vegas; needless to say, the city attractions coupled with the underhand machinations of their rivals prove a major distraction for his protégés.
Seemingly this one sat on a shelf for a few years, which kind of makes sense when you see that the date of the tournament was '84, yet the film was released in '86. Presumably it was on account of its low quality, although I have frankly seen worse from Crown from the period, although admittedly not that much worse. The comedy is pretty basic stuff and seems to be based primarily around gags that can be elicited from laughing at stereotypes, to that end we have, amongst others, a wild man (played by the guy who starred alongside Jean-Claude Van Damme in Bloodsport (1988) - to say this fella's acting range appears to have been a bit limited would be something of an understatement), there's also a Mexican and a Prince lookalike transvestite. I did chuckle occasionally although I can't actually now even remember what at. So, it's not totally without humour but it is of a very low-brow standard, i.e. an angry man with a beard hitting tennis balls aggressively, out-dated gay humour, etc. It is enlivened a bit by the introduction of some breasts though - by contrast to the humour, this sort of production value never seems to get old for some reason. The film also is kind of notable for improbably starring Christopher Lee as the college head. I think it seems that like many others such as Al Pacino, Harvey Keitel, flared trousers and beards, the 80's was a barren wasteland of a decade for Lee and so he pitched up in some rubbish, only to return with flying colours later on. In the final analysis, this isn't very good but it's not exactly terrible either - if you are a tennis loving Christopher Lee fan, you are probably the demographic that Crown were aiming for, in which case, batter in.