In a story told in narrative flashbacks, a young TV consultant is hired by the President of a bankrupt USA to organize a telethon in order to prevent the country from being repossessed by wealthy Native Americans.

Director:

Writers:

(play) (as Phillip Proctor), (play) | 5 more credits »
Reviews

Watch Now

From $2.99 on Amazon Video

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Action | Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

In New York, armed men hijack a subway car and demand a ransom for the passengers. Even if it's paid, how could they get away?

Director: Joseph Sargent
Stars: Walter Matthau, Robert Shaw, Martin Balsam
Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

A Dr. is not sure if he murdered his beautiful but wicked wife, and has his attractive nurse try to find the truth by hypnotizing him.

Director: Reginald Le Borg
Stars: Lon Chaney Jr., Patricia Morison, J. Carrol Naish
Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

A gang of thieves plan a daring bank robbery, making their escape across the rooftops of Los Angeles. The police are quickly called in, however, and only one of the robbers, Murdock, makes ... See full summary »

Director: Paul Wendkos
Stars: Bo Svenson, Cybill Shepherd, Mel Scott
Comedy | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A naive business graduate is installed as president of a manufacturing company as part of a stock scam.

Directors: Joel Coen, Ethan Coen
Stars: Tim Robbins, Paul Newman, Jennifer Jason Leigh
Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.3/10 X  

A seriocomic look at the life of Julie Walker. Bored with her marriage, and encouraged by her friends, she contemplates an affair. Fantasy and reality mix often, leading to complications and headaches.

Director: Hy Averback
Stars: Cybill Shepherd, Charles Frank, John Hillerman
Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

A deadly look into the savage world of gangsters. The aftermath of a holdup turns into a game of deceit and doublecross. A vengeful woman brings about the destruction of the entire gang of ruthless killers.

Director: Jesús Franco
Stars: Francisco Acosta, Georges Alexandre, Gilda Arancio
Silver Bears (1977)
Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

Financial wizard "Doc" Fletcher (Michael Caine) is sent by crime boss Joe Fiore (Martin Balsam) to buy a bank in Switzerland in order to more easily launder their profits. When he arrives, ... See full summary »

Director: Ivan Passer
Stars: Michael Caine, Cybill Shepherd, Louis Jourdan
The Return (1980)
Sci-Fi | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 3.1/10 X  

Two young children and an adult in a small town have an encounter with an alien spaceship. 25 years later the children are reunited as adults in the same town which is now beset by strange ... See full summary »

Director: Greydon Clark
Stars: Jan-Michael Vincent, Cybill Shepherd, Martin Landau
Agent 8 3/4 (1964)
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

British Intelligence sends an unemployed Czech-speaking British writer to Prague in a mission of industrial espionage.

Director: Ralph Thomas
Stars: Dirk Bogarde, Sylva Koscina, Robert Morley
Blood Mania (1970)
Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 3.7/10 X  

A sex-crazed nympho helps speed along her father's death so she can use the inheritance to help out her depraved boyfriend.

Director: Robert Vincent O'Neill
Stars: Peter Carpenter, Maria De Aragon, Vicki Peters
Action | Comedy | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

Whilst traveling in pre-war Nazi Germany, a young couple realise a passenger seems to have been kidnapped off their train, but, no other passenger aside from themselves, recalls her.

Director: Anthony Page
Stars: Elliott Gould, Cybill Shepherd, Angela Lansbury
Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.5/10 X  

A British woman visits her husband at the Mexican mine he is attempting to reopen and discovers that the workers refuse to enter the mine fearing an ancient curse. The couple enter the mine... See full summary »

Director: Alfredo Zacarías
Stars: Samantha Eggar, Stuart Whitman, Roy Jenson
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
President Chet Roosevelt
...
Monty Rushmore
...
Vincent Vanderhoff
...
Sam Birdwater
Richard Schaal ...
Jerry
...
Eric McMerkin
...
Lucy Beth
...
Mouling Jackson
...
Oklahoma Daredevil, Roy Budnitz
...
The Earl of Manchester
...
Danny Olson (as Terry McGovern)
...
Jimmy Dunphy
...
Kip Margolis
...
Larry Miller (Poopy Butt)
...
Himself
Edit

Storyline

In the not too distant future, the United States government is virtually bankrupt and in danger of being foreclosed on by a group of Native Americans, now owners of the massive Nike Corporation. A desperate President decides to make a last-ditch effort to save the country... by raising money with a telethon! Written by <mycroft@reactiveware.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The ultimate spectacle is now a movie.

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

10 August 1979 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

1998 - Die vier Milliarden Dollar Show  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

As part of the promotion for this film's release in 1979, Ted Coombs traveled on roller-skates across the USA for a total of 5,193 miles, setting a world record. He is now a technology author, futurist, artist, and scientist. See more »

Goofs

When Monty Rushmore is shot, he grabs his left side, just over his hip. Later, there is a bloody bandage on his left shoulder. See more »

Quotes

Narrator: Everyone all across the country was watching the telethon. From what was left of New York, to the first all-gay state, North Dakota. All eyes were glued to their sets...
[shot of men at stand-up urinals watching television]
Narrator: ...which in some cases, ruined a lot of good shoes.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Dorothy Stratten: The Untold Story (1985) See more »

Soundtracks

Without Love
Written, Produced and Performed by Nick Lowe
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

What if Jerry Brown had become President and Linda Ronstadt "First Girlfriend?"
19 April 2001 | by (San Diego, California, U.S.A.) – See all my reviews

Time capsule of 1970's California life-style...or where it seemed to be headed in the next decade. In the opening we see the residents of California living in permanently parked cars and commuting to work via various bicycles, skateboards, and people-powered scooters. John Ritter plays President Chet Roosevelt, a thinly veiled spoof of then California governor and presidential hopeful Jerry "Moonbeam" Brown (he dated roller skating rock star Linda Ronstadt and slept on a futon). This movie asks the question, what if Jerry became president and Linda the "First Girlfriend?" John Ritter's real life wife Nancy Morgan plays Lucy Beth, President Chet's roller-skating girlfriend. In the eighties the United States is broke and the President decides to throw a telethon on television to raise money. At the time this film was made, most television markets had no more than a few stations and watching Jerry Lewis struggle to keep awake during the MDA telethon was an interesting phenomena. Here Harvey Korman hosts an endless list of bad acts that foreshadows the humor of SCTV. Most of the humor here would be lost on anyone too young to remember the 70's or for those who don't really want to remember. Though the film takes place in the "future" eighties, for campy fun Americathon is an interesting time-capsule of the issues ripe for spoofing at the time.


8 of 10 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
A 'What If?' for Jimmy Carter fans repose1983
Where can I get it? I_kill_Jack
Opening Credits/Relevant to 2008 Banquo13
This Film Needs to Be Remade for 2009 Shuh
Idiocracy mazigazi
Warner Brothers Archive DVD Baroque
Discuss Americathon (1979) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?