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Number One (1969)

PG-13 | | Drama, Sport | 21 August 1969 (USA)
The story of Cat Catlan (Heston), a washed up quarterback who turns to drink and women to solve his problems. But he soon discovers that his problems are just beginning.

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Cast

Credited cast:
...
Ron 'Cat' Catlan
...
Julie Catlan
...
Richie Fowler
...
Coach Southerd
...
Ann Marley
...
Doctor Tristler
Richard Elkins ...
Kelly Williams
...
Walt Chaffee
...
Harvey Hess
...
Himself
Ernie Barnes ...
Deke Coleman
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Danny Abramowicz ...
Himself
Doug Atkins ...
Himself
Bob Bennett ...
Penny Forber
...
Ed Davis
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Storyline

The story of Cat Catlan (Heston), a washed up quarterback who turns to drink and women to solve his problems. But he soon discovers that his problems are just beginning. Written by Jonathan Broxton <j.w.broxton@sheffield.ac.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

When You're Number One, Everyone Wants A Piece Of The Action... so fight--claw--grab--lie--but stay there as long as you can! You have nowhere to go but down! See more »

Genres:

Drama | Sport

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some sexuality and brief nudity | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

21 August 1969 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Pro  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$1,000,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(TCM print)

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

While not one of his more successful films from a box office standpoint, Charlton Heston recalled in his autobiography "In The Arena" that over the years a number of real life athletes who saw the film wrote to him praising his performance and the film, saying it perfectly captured exactly how it feels to be an athlete at the end of his prime and struggling to hold on. See more »

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User Reviews

Well worth seeing
9 September 2011 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Some have argued that Heston is not convincing as an NFL quarterback. I disagree. He was six feet three and 200-odd pounds, which is more than large enough, especially during the 1960s. Moreover, Heston worked out with the NFL players on set and even suffered a cracked rib, courtesy of Doug Atkins. AND CH was in his mid-40s.

No, I believe the problem with "Number One" is the screenplay. Catlan (have also seen it spelled as "Catlin") isn't an especially sympathetic character; in fact, he's rather a jerk. He leaves a lot to be desired regarding education and culture. His LIFE has been the NFL.

Now, Heston gets all those qualities, but doesn't suggest anything more admirable. Although in one of the late scenes, after Cat has committed adultery with Diana Muldaur (many men WOULD have done so with DM at her sexiest, as here; but I digress:)), he talks about his life and career with his long-suffering spouse (the excellent Jessica Walter). Here he is vulnerable, and sympathetic. Would that there were more such moments in the film.

But "Number One" remains worth watching. If you need a reason, well, it is the first film to depict at least adequately what professional American football is truly like. "Brian's Song," "North Dallas Forty," "Semi-Tough," etc. came later--


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