When it aired on ABC in the latter half of the '70s, "Starsky & Hutch" brought a Jewish/Gentile vibe to the TV cop drama -- Starsky with his King David curls, Hutch with his surfer-dude waves. Unlike "Charlie's Angels," however, "Starsky & Hutch" wasn't just about hair. The show had some grit, parading a lineup of pimps and whores, dealers and squealers, before the viewing public. Of course, it also had some style. There was the vroom car -- a Gran Torino that made it difficult for the good guys to sneak up on the bad guys. And there were the threads -- tight pants, leather jackets, lapels you could have a family picnic on.
Which is to say, the show's absolutely ripe for satire -- maybe overripe, given the bashing that the '70s have taken since the '80s. Luckily, that hasn't deterred director Todd Phillips (Road Trip, Old School) from having a go at it. Starring Ben Stiller and Owen Wilson as the Siegfried and Roy of Bay City crime-fighting, Starsky & Hutch puts on quite a show, spoofing the whole idea of designer cops along the way. Stiller, in particular, is a veritable grab bag of humor, assuming various disguises without losing his knuckleheaded intensity. He even runs funny, the arms flapping a little more than befits a law-enforcement stud. That's what tight pants'll do to a guy, I guess.