Editorial review of Gus starring Don Knotts, Tim Conway, Ed Asner, Tom Bosley courtesy of Amazon.com
When Andy, brother of a Yugoslavian soccer hero, brings Gus, a field goal-kicking mule, to the United States as halftime entertainment for a losing Atoms football team, laughs and lasting fame follow. Gus’s intelligent, almost human interactions with his Yugoslavian ball holder and the devious duo intent on stifling Andy and Gus’s success are amusing and entertaining. An extended mule chase through a busy supermarket and Gus’s drunken acceptance of an award on “Gus Day” are only two examples of the slapstick comedy that pervades this 97-minute film. Talents Edward Asner, Don Knotts, Tim Conway, Gary Grimes, Dick Enberg, and Tom Bosley enliven the somewhat predictable plot of this 1976 Disney film. Other notable appearances include real-life football players Dick Butkus and Johnny Unitas. This is fun, wholesome entertainment for children ages 3 and older. —Tami Horiuchi
Description of Gus
A cast of comedy pros, including the hilarious Don Knotts and Tim Conway, make this Disney classic a sure winner! Low-ranking football team The California Atoms are at a constant loss until they recruit a new player — a mule named Gus. It turns out that Gus is an amazing placekicker with a 100-yard field goal ability! Just as the Atoms begin to leave their losing streak in the dust, crooks attempt to kidnap their new star. Whether it’s a surefooted race to the goalposts or a riotous chase down supermarket aisles, action in this Disney favorite is sure to make your family cheer!|Part of the film, featuring a place-kicking Yugoslavian mule, was filmed on a portable field of sod covering a parking lot at the Disney Studio, while the animation building doubled as a hospital.
Trivia for Gus (1976), starring Don Knotts, Tim Conway
- Bob Crane’s last movie.
- The chase scene playing on the drive-in screen is from Disney’s ‘The Million Dollar Duck (1971)’ , also directed by Vincent McEveety.
- Virginia O’Brien’s final film.
- Casting Dick Van Patten playing a tough guy gambler/bookie surely drew laughs around Hollywood at the time. While Patten’s known as a nice guy, he’s also known as a serious, hardcore gambler who introduced his sons to gambling while in their teens. Vincent Van Patten, in fact, is a serious poker player and has played and done television commentary on poker tournaments.