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Film: Starsky & Hutch

The '70's

In 2004, a Starsky & Hutch movie directed by Todd Phillips was released, starring Ben Stiller and Owen Wilson as Starsky and Hutch (respectively), spoofing the original TV series. Two streetwise undercover cops in 1975, driving in a red 1975 Ford Gran Torino, bust drug criminals with the help of underworld player, Huggy Bear (played by Snoop Dogg). The film functions as a sort of prequel to the TV series, as it portrays when Starsky was first partnered with Hutchinson. The film also switches the personalities of the title characters. While in the TV show, Starsky was curious, laid-back, and streetwise, and Hutch was very serious and by-the-book. In the film, Starsky is the serious cop, and Hutch is laid-back. There are four Frat Pack members in this film, although not all are in major roles (one is an uncredited cameo).

The movie contains examples of:

  • Actor Allusion: Starsky causes a Mexican Standoff in Huggy's bar when he accidentally shoots the tail off of his pet iguana Corky. Oddly enough, this isn't the only movie where shooting an animal called "Corky" gets Ben Stiller in trouble. Envy (released the same year as this film) had Stiller's character accidentally killing a horse named Corky (owned by Jack Black's character) with a bow and arrow, kicking off two hours of hijinks.
  • Affectionate Parody
  • Bond One-Liner: Huggy gets one in at the climax of the movie.
    Huggy: I found your nine iron, bitch!
  • Brick Joke: When Huggy Bear goes to eavesdrop on Reese Feldman by posing as his caddy at the golf course, Reese chews him out and smacks him in the face for forgetting to bring his nine iron. At the end of the movie, Huggy takes Reese out by ambushing him in his boat and knocking him out with a golf club...quipping, "I found your nine iron, bitch!" before he does it.
  • The Cameo: Will Ferrell has an uncredited cameo as Big Earl.
  • Character Development: Starsky starts out as a serious cop and Hutch as a more laid-back, but as a result of various actions and events their personalities begin to switch by the film's end.
  • Cool Car: Starsky's Gran Torino and Huggy's '76 Lincoln.
  • Cultured Warrior: Huggy's beret-wearing mook: "I read it in a magazine."
  • Cut Lex Luthor a Check: Lampshaded by Reese Feldman when he's showing the other gangsters his new brand of cocaine, which is undetectable to chemical tests and drug-sniffing dogs. He points out that, with the scientific mastery necessary to alter the coca plant's cell structure and remove its distinctive scent, he would probably be a candidate for the Nobel Prize if the stuff wasn't illegal.
  • False Roulette: Reversed in the movie, to the terror of the perp in question.
  • Fetish Fuel: invoked The first mention of Big Earl is from Huggy Bear saying, "That boy loves dragons." As the boys find out when they go to interrogate Earl in prison, his love of dragons is a bit more sexual in nature than they thought.
  • The Film of the Series
  • Fluffy the Terrible: Deconstructed in the movie. Tiny is exactly average sized.
  • Generic Graffiti: Averted. In the scene where the pair meet Huggy Bear, the tags in the background are very authentic-looking 70's style graffiti.
  • Have a Gay Old Time
  • Hidden Wire: Parodied.
  • Hideous Hangover Cure
  • Identical-Looking Asians: Chau tells Hutch that white people look the same to him, and Hutch says the same about orientals.
  • Insistent Terminology: It's not a boat, it's a yacht.
  • Intoxication Ensues: Starsky with cocaine.
  • Ironic Nickname: Discussed. When the boys try to interrogate Jeff, thinking he's actually Big Earl, he points out that he isn't big enough to have a nickname like "Big Earl". After some debate, Starsky and Hutch decide to believe him, realizing that he also isn't small enough for "Big Earl" to be an ironic name.
  • Juggling Loaded Guns: Starsky tries to intimidate a suspect by playing Russian Roulette with him. Said suspect rolls his eyes when he sees him empty his revolver and pretend to put one bullet in, but becomes wide-eyed and panicked quickly when one of the bullets Starsky puts up his sleeve falls into the cylinder. The scene is still played for laughs since Starsky thinks he still has an empty revolver. When the suspect tries to plead to Hutch when he comes in the interrogation room, Starsky ends up shooting the wall.
  • Never Trust a Trailer: Minor example - The pony Reese Feldman gave for his daughter for her birthday? In the actual movie, that's for her bat mitzvah.
  • Outrun the Fireball: Averted, when Hutch's house is blown up, Willis is sent flying even though he was halfway across the street, and there was even a front yard's worth of distance between the house and the sidewalk.
  • Pool Scene
  • The Precious, Precious Car: Starsky's Gran Torino. Unusually, the car belongs to a protagonist character, who accidentally destroys it himself (after being talked into an ill-judged jump).
  • Precision F-Strike: From one of Huggy's henchmen during the scene with the iguana. Justified, since the movie's rated PG-13 (a movie automatically receives an R rating if it uses the word "fuck" more than once).
    Starsky: Well, you should keep that thing in a terrarium!
    Huggy: Man, what the hell is a terrarium?
    Henchman: What the fuck is a terrarium?
  • Remake Cameo: Paul Michael Glaser and David Soul (the original Starsky and Hutch) had cameos in the movie.
  • Rite of Passage: The heroes pretend to be performers at a Bat Mitzvah in order to infiltrate a suspect's home.
  • San Francisco: Parodied, as one such chase scene wrecks the car.
  • Secret Test: Subverted and parodied when Starsky and Hutch try to infiltrate a biker bar disguised as members of a local gang. When the barman asks them to answer a question to prove that they're actually members, Hutch wrongly assumes that it's a trick question and tries to think around it.
    Jeff: Tell me: if you two are Jesters, what's our credo?
    Hutch: The credo? Well, uh... You almost got me there. There is no credo!
    (Jeff gives him a weird look)
    Hutch: ...other than the secret credo.
    Jeff: That ain't no secret. It's written right on our damn crest.
    (They look up and realize that the Jesters' crest is hanging above the bar)
  • Show Some Leg: Parodied, in a male-on-male variant. When Starsky and Hutch go to interrogate Big Earl in prison, he refuses to tell them anything unless Hutch shows him his belly button, does a Sexy Walk across the room, then growls at him like a dragon. Big Earl loves his dragons.
  • This Is for Emphasis, Bitch!: Huggy's "I found your nine iron, bitch!"
  • Turn in Your Badge: Subverted and Parodied in Starsky's first scene with Captain Doby. After Doby chews Starsky out for irresponsibly firing his gun into a crowded intersection while chasing a purse snatcher, Starsky rolls his eyes and tells Doby that he can have his badge if he wants it. When Doby casually goes to take him up on his offer, Starsky panics and snatches his badge back, realizing that Doby would actually do it.
    Starsky: Hey! Lighten up, will ya? I was just making a point.
  • You Know Who Said That:
    Huggy Bear: Dig this man. Someone once said: "To err is human, to forgive divine."
    Hutch: Tch. What idiot said that?
    Huggy Bear: I believe that was God - the greatest mack of all.
    • Actually, it was from Alexander Pope.
  • Your Approval Fills Me with Shame: "You make a very convincing dragon. You should feel good about that."

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