Saturday, September 28, 2019

Christopher Atkins in A Night in Heaven

'Hey! What about my clothes!!!!'

The last line spoken from stripper Rick Monroe, (Christopher Atkins) sort of sums 1983's A Night in Heaven, and in many ways... Christopher's short lived film career.  I remember in the late 80's when I was old enough enough to go to the video store and rent on my own.  I had seen images of Atkins promoting the film in magazines and was eager to the film for myself.

I remember renting it the flick several times, always placing it on the store's counter under a copy of Star Wars, Ghostbusters, or The Terminator.  I sneak in and watch and re-watch Atkins' nude scenes again and again.  For some reason, maybe due to those white pants, the stripping scenes were not really that hot.  Although Atkins showed the full Monty in his love scene, the stripping scenes were rather tame.

The nudity in The Blue Lagoon was pretty daring, especially for the early 80's, and given his first role was frolicking naked on a deserted island, Atkins career was destined to be focused on the baring of skin.  It seemed he attempted to move away into other roles briefly, but in the end, seemed to accept his claim to fame, and posed naked again in his late 30's for Greg Gorman's book As I See It.

That Boat Scene....

The boat scene remains one of the most exploitative, not too mention, peculiar scenes of male scenes ever in a mainstream movie.  There is of course an erotic element given Atkins is naked, and the cmnm dynamic with the jilted husband.  The scene is just so... well, too much, especially given he's being held naked at gun point.

Atkins acting is especially painful to watch in the scene.  I don't necessarily blame Akins, although no Marlon Brando, he was capable of pulling off a scene if written with limited abilities in mind. I blame the director and editor.  I know they were going for the erotic vulnerablity, but they could have done a few more takes as some of the lines were cringe worthy, and could have been better if there were any interest in making the scene anything more than a reason to show Atkins naked again.

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