The year is 1980. Dodger Latherhill is an over-the-hill ex-stuntman living on the ragged edge of poverty in the San Fernando Valley. Dodger’s problem is that he is a Modern-Day Rogue: out of place in time and temperament. We find him, at age forty, still retaining, in full force and zest, the determination, dynamic personality and testosterone he had at age eighteen. His love of performing in his chosen profession has blinded Dodger to all other avenues of expression. It has created in him, a fatal flaw, seen in his inability to choose a cautionary path through life. He is about to collide, head-on, with his most feared adversary: Organized Society. He won’t conform and he cannot stop his head-on run at fame and fortune. It’s the only game in Hollywood, a town that eats a hundred actors each day, before lunch.
On the slim chance that he may be hired as a stunt performer at the Superama Stunt Arena in Hollywood, Dodger quits his hated drafting job and plunges ahead with preparations to get back into the work he loves. Miracles do occur, and he lands the coveted stunt job. For a few brief days, his future looks bright. His prospective father in law, Harvey Pratt, offers Dodger fifteen hundred dollars and an almost-new Cadillac if he will marry his live-in girl friend, Harvey’s daughter, Lola Pratt. Dodger agrees. Now he can pay some of his bills, feed his animals, and pay his ex-wife her overdue child support money. To celebrate his new job and marriage, Dodger leaves Lola at their wedding reception and takes off, in the Cadillac with his two best friends, Cully Dawson and Marion Mumford Overbeery . . . Bad Career Move! While practicing his fast-draw, Dodger manages to shoot himself in his best dog-kicking leg. Even so, with only one good leg, Dodger tries to hold onto his job, competing with the other stuntmen who are half his age. But in a confrontation with the show’s manager his secret is blown. Dodger punches the guy out and loses the job.
This begins a downward plunging series of harrowing adventures toward his inevitable fate. Dodger must now take on stunt work even an insane man would not consider. He is constantly reminded of the stuntman’s motto: “There are no Old, Stupid Stuntmen.” His encounters with members of the animal world include: a pregnant goat, a flock of turkeys, two shell-shocked and incontinent stunt dogs, an angry rodeo bull, a horny stallion, birds, rabbits, ducks and cats. The members of the human race that he encounters are equally exotic and terrifying. There is an ageing “B”Movie Lothario, a drunken Mexican Leprechaun, an anal-retentive Location Manager, an over-amorous, Gay Film Producer, a drug-crazed Gunman, a spiteful Ex-Lover, and finally, his own Not-Ready-For-Prime-Time Friends.
Dodger escapes from a courtroom—where his accumulated transgressions are being heard by an incredulous Judge—and starts running. It seems the whole world wants to nail his sorry hide to a fence post. In his frantic run for freedom, Dodger must face the LAPD with their state-of-the-art firepower, but also his greatest fear in the form of a prophetic and recurring nightmare that is about to become real.