MODEL-Ts don't go so fast, not nearly fast enough for chase scenes. And Burt and Clint can't get up much speed either in "City Heat," which ain't exactly about to make your day.
Reynolds and Eastwood, the megabuck box- office brothers, share a screen for the first time, and maybe the last time. They're joined appropriately by fellow frequent supercop Richard Roundtree in what's billed as a Prohibition Era mystery comedy. The stars of "Smokey" and "Dirty" and "Shaft" -- sounds like a horde of chimney-dwelling dwarfs -- play crime-fighters.
Reynolds is a coy private eye, Roundtree his debonair partner, and Eastwood a city cop who can't stand gumshoes. Eastwood's loner takes on Reynolds' good old boy, but neither seems especially comfortable working with a partner. The two adversaries (off-screen friends) are drawn into a mutual investigation when Roundtree, one of the few inspired players in this dopey travesty, is helped off a high building.
Madeline Kahn is also outstanding, if miscast, as an earthy socialite who'd rather die almost than break a fingernail. Irene Cara and Jane Alexander are featured as your sundry females, necessary to the atmosphere of this intended gangster spoof.
Richard Benjamin directed with a heavy hand on the atmosphere trigger -- lots of saxophones, cigarettes and a deluge of stormy weather, not to mention trite visual references to old James Cagney movies. The film noir spoof becomes its own cliche.
Reynolds seems to be a little hoarse, even exhausted, but he gives it his all. Eastwood maintains the old deadeye stare down the barrel of his .44 magnum. Don't blame the fellas. They're good when they're together, but that doesn't happen nearly often enough in this sporadically amusing script. CITY HEAT -- At area theaters.