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Things Are Tough All Over (1982)

Cheech and Chong are hired to drive a limo from Chicago to Las Vegas by two shady Arabs - Mr. Slyman (Cheech) and Prince Habib (Chong). Unbeknownst to them, five million dollars of dirty money has been stuffed throughout the car.

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Writers:

(as Thomas Chong),
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Cocktail Waitress
...
Cop in Laundromat
Billy Beck ...
Pop, Manager Red Wagon Adult Motel
Don Bovingloh ...
Maitre D'
Richard 'Moon' Calhoun ...
Drummer
...
Chong / Prince Habib
Jennifer Condos ...
Bass Player
John Corrona ...
St. Louis Biker
...
Man with Tongue in Restaurant (as David Couwlier)
...
French Girl #1 (as Shelby Fiddis)
Aaron Freeman ...
Cop in Ghetto
Mike Friedman ...
Car Rental Agent
Evelyn Guerrero ...
Donna, Cheech's Friend smuggling illegals
Maya Harman ...
Belly Dancer
Vanaghan S. Housepian ...
Henchman
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Storyline

Cheech and Chong work briefly as car wash attendants and musicians before being hired to drive a car from Chicago to Las Vegas. Unbeknownst to them, their employers (themselves in double roles) have concealed five million dollars of dirty money in the upholstery. A series of adventures ensues, including the making of a porn film featuring 'The Guys' and their real-life squeezes. Written by <rth@ece.arizona.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The Original HIGH Rollers Hit The Strip! See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Action

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

4 August 1982 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Todo está muy duro  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$7,000,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The restaurant sequence features comedians Dave Coulier, Rip Taylor and Ruby Wax in brief cameos. See more »

Quotes

Mr. Slyman: They've stolen our money?
Prince Habib: And part of the car too.
See more »

Connections

Follows Up in Smoke (1978) See more »

Soundtracks

Johnny B. Goode
Written by Chuck Berry (uncredited)
Performed by Chuck Berry
Courtesy of All Platinum Records
See more »

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User Reviews

 
This is funny and engaging all over
22 August 2006 | by (New York City) – See all my reviews

Cheech and Chong are back in such strong form here that it makes me wonder if I shouldn't reevaluate the previous film, Nice Dreams (1981), which seemed like a misstep to me on my last viewing.

Of course, there are some major differences with Things are Tough All Over. For Nice Dreams, Cheech and Chong took the ultimate stoner/slacker route and made a film with little plot or direction. It seemed like they were engaging in the same behavior offscreen as on and just and playing around with loose, rough ideas. Maybe they also wondered what the heck they had done when later watching Nice Dreams (or watching the box office returns), because for Things are Tough All Over, they took an entirely different path and crafted an intricately structured comic misadventure where they play two interweaving sets of characters--Cheech and Chong, of course, and Mr. Slyman (Cheech) and Prince Habib (Chong), Arab brothers who serve as Cheech and Chong's employers in various guises.

The script for Things are Tough All Over may have been something Cheech and Chong were working on for awhile. The basic subtext (as reflected in the title) is the recession during the Carter years in the U.S. Slyman and Habib represent the flipside of the gas crisis (which is both metaphorically and literally in the plot at the same time in interesting and funny ways, even including flatulence jokes), and their prosperity as well as Cheech and Chong's role in the climax and denouement of the film represent the change of economic and social climate of the Reagan years. This may be reading a bit too heavily into the film, but to some extent, these themes were definitely intentional.

Not that this is a serious film. The gags here are on par with Up in Smoke (1978). And given the engaging misadventure/road-movie plot, the gags have a purpose that makes them that much better. Things are Tough All Over is also unusual in that it's the first Cheech and Chong film that's not focused on drugs. Not that I dislike drug humor (or the idea of drug use), but not _having_ to make this film about drugs opens up the door for Cheech and Chong to focus on comedy for its own sake. They go with material because it's going to be funny, and their timing is exquisitely on--they know just how far they can milk any particular joke for maximum effect.


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