10 (1979) from Tuna and Johnny Web (aka Uncle Scoopy)

Tuna's notes in white:

10 (1979) features Dudley Moore in his usual loveable stumbling drunk mode as a famous songwriter who celebrates his 42 birthday, and immediately launches into middle age crisis. He has a fight with his girlfriend (Julie Andrews, wife of director Blake Edwards) over whether the term  "broad" is derogatory or not, and whether he should peep through his telescope at the neighbor's orgies, which feature plenty of nudity from anonymous party-goers, many of whom know they are being watched. Julie leaves mad. The final blow to their relationship comes when Dudley goes to his neighbor's to join the sexual shenanigans and is spotted through the telescope - by Julie Andrews, who had returned to patch things up. Oops.

The next morning, Moore is driving home when he spots Bo Derek in the car next to him on her way to her wedding.  He immediately becomes obsessed with her youth and beauty, and follows her to the church. On his way there he encounters the usual Dudley-style embarrassments. He hits a Beverly Hills police car, finds that his license has expired, and that he has no proof of registration. He eventually gets to the church just in time for more Dudley-style pratfalls. While spying on the ceremony, a bee crawls out of a bouquet and stings him on the nose. After ascertaining that Derek is the daughter of a dentist, he makes an appointment for a check-up. He does eventually learn where Bo and her husband are spending their honeymoon, but not before he is forced to endure more Dudley-style humiliation in the form of six major fillings.  Soon, however, he is off to Mexico to chase the perfect "10" and get his head together.

He tries a fling with Dee Wallace Stone, who shows buns and possibly one breast, but he can't rise to the occasion. Then, his dream comes true when he rescues Bo's husband from the surf, and ends up in her bed. Needless to say, she is not what he was imagining.

This is the sort of light comedy with lots of breasts that I wish they still made. Bo's appearance is reason enough for men to see the film, but there are plenty of funny moments. Even Bo, who is the weakest performer in the film, got off some great lines. At one point Moore is on top and plugging away, and she says, "It's stuck." Moore replies, "No, it's ok, really. Don't be scared." She laughs and says, "No, the record is stuck."

  • Bo Derek looks incredible, and has lots of breast and bun exposure. Unfortunately, a lot of the prolonged sex scene, where they ball to Ravel's Bolero, is too dark to see.

  • Julie Andrews has a great poke-through

  • There is much nudity from the party guests .

The story of the party guests has proven to be perhaps more interesting than the film itself. Director Blake Edwards hired porn superstars for the orgy scenes figuring that they would be comfortable with the nudity. They were all put up in a hotel suite, and the party was so wild that their room service was cut off. At one point, Edwards directed one of the male stars to get up, meaning to get out of the chair he was in. The star misunderstood what was supposed to be up, and started spanking his monkey on set. When Dudley Moore related this story during a Playboy interview, his girlfriend, who was off camera, nearly stopped the interview she laughed so hard.

Thanks to Celebrity Sleuth and many Funhouse members, nearly all have been identified. Interesting to me was the fact that so many people recognized exactly one of the women, because that one was a personal favorite. And no two people had the same favorite! The list reads like a Who's Who of porn:

Here are the stars:

  • Constance Money (real name Susan Jensen), star of the classic "The Opening of Misty Beethoven."

  • Annette Haven, a former nurses aide, who had one of the prettiest faces in porn. She refused to do facials.

  • Dorothy LeMay

  • Serena Blacquelord, usually billed as Serena

  • Candida Royale, who started Femme, a studio devoted to producing films  women would enjoy, too. My favorite of the titles she released is called "Three Daughters." I read an interview where she said she had several more films in the cans, but there was no way to make a profit releasing them. When porn made the transition from film and adult theater releases to video, the gross per film was much lower, and the economics of creating a video version of her 35 mm films just did not make sense. This same change from film and theaters ended the golden age of porn, when it looked like porn and mainstream films might get close enough together to join hands.

Scoop's notes in yellow:

"What is this? 10 ... 9 ... 8... 7... 6... "

"Bo Derek aging"

Bo likes to tell this joke on herself. She turned 53 last year, and the film turned 30. It is 2010 as I write this. Tuna wrote his review in 2001.

I don't know if Bo is actually down to a 6 or lower these days, but I sat next to her on a flight from Miami to Lima in 1996 or 1997 and she was still at least a nine. She was 40 then, but her waist was still extraordinarily tiny, and she still turned every head when she walked by. And not because she was familiar. I guarantee you that the first reaction she inspired was "that woman is gorgeous," and the second was "By God - no wonder she looks so good. That's Bo Freakin' Derek."

DVD info from Amazon.

  • Widescreen anamorphic, 2.35:1, plus a full screen version

  • a few minor features: a trailer, a featurette, etc.

  • not recommended. Wait for a re-mastered special edition

Dudley Moore's humor seems archaic now and the entire film seems dated, but I still kinda like "10," and always have. Most guys over 40 do, except Leonard Maltin, because it's a niche film about getting to middle age, and thus has a tightly defined target audience. Men like it more than women. Older men like it more than younger men. Americans like it more than others. It's only rated in the high fives overall at IMDb, but if you are a 45+ year old American man, it is probably a good bet.

But even if you fit the pattern, you should realize that this film is the cinematic equivalent of what the Dudley Moore character writes for a living - elevator music. 10 is pleasant, inoffensive, and unchallenging. It has some gentle laughs, mellow tunes, and sexy women. Above all, it made Bo Derek a star and gave her A-list recognition throughout the world. 

The Critics Vote

  • Maltin 2/4

The People Vote ...

IMDb guideline: 7.5 usually indicates a level of excellence, about like three and a half stars from the critics. 6.0 usually indicates lukewarm watchability, about like two and a half stars from the critics. The fives are generally not worthwhile unless they are really your kind of material, about like two stars from the critics. Films under five are generally awful even if you like that kind of film, equivalent to about one and a half stars from the critics or less, depending on just how far below five the rating is.

My own guideline: A means the movie is so good it will appeal to you even if you hate the genre. B means the movie is not good enough to win you over if you hate the genre, but is good enough to do so if you have an open mind about this type of film. C means it will only appeal to genre addicts, and has no crossover appeal. D means you'll hate it even if you like the genre. E means that you'll hate it even if you love the genre. F means that the film is not only unappealing across-the-board, but technically inept as well.

Based on this description, Tuna grades this film a B-. (Scoopy says "C+" - a pleasant, unremarkable comedy for a highly targeted audience, no more.) 

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