When you’re number one, everyone wants a piece of the action…
The late 60s were a busy time for Charlton Heston. His career took it into another gear in the 60s. He made some of his best movies. Number One was not one of those movies that stood above that stack of movies that he made at that time. This is a story of quarterback Ron “Cat” Catlan in his forties who is facing the end of his football career for the New Orleans Saints. Number One is a midlife crisis movie with Charlton Heston’s machismo shining through and through.
The highlight of Number One is the rare appearance of Al Hirt. Hirt began his acting career by debuting in films like “Rome Adventure” (1962) with Troy Donahue and Angie Dickinson and “Number One” (1969) with Charlton Heston.
From Tom Gries, the outstanding director of Will Penny, 100 Rifles, The Hawaiians, Lady Ice, Breakout and Breakheart Pass, comes this sports drama starring the legendary Charlton Heston (Ben-Hur) in a powerful performance as Ron “The Cat” Catlan, a washed-up pro-football quarterback facing retirement. Catlan’s wife Julie (Jessica Walter, Play Misty for Me) has her own fashion-designing business and his former teammate Richie (Bruce Dern, Coming Home) has parlayed his football heroics into a successful auto-leasing company. As “The Cat” loses his legendary quickness, he finds himself ill-suited to join the real world after his pampered isolation in the NFL. He takes to the bottle and to the lure of an illicit affair with Ann (Diana Muldaur, One More Train to Rob). Featuring John Randolph (Prizzi’s Honor) as Catlan’s coach and members of the 1968 New Orleans Saints as themselves, Number One is a piercing study of an athlete at the end of his career.