John Ritter plays an unsuccessful actor who takes a job posing as comic-book hero Captain Avenger at comics stores and conventions. While thus garbed, Ritter foils a grocery store robbery. He skedaddles from the scene when the cops show up, leading witnesses to assume that he is a genuine costumed superhero, the sort that shows up to foil the villains and then modestly retreats after his job is done. Ritter is hired by the mayor's staff, who hope that the Captain Avenger tie-in will help the mayor win an upcoming election. This plan comes acropper, and Captain Avenger finds himself on the outs with the public. Prodded by his girlfriend Anne Archer to be himself and not rely on a costume and mask to gain adulation, Ritter becomes a bonafide hero when he rescues several citizens from a fire. Thanks to the enthusiastic performance of John Ritter, Hero at Large remains amusing even when you know what's going to happen next (a common occurrence in this film). ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi
Hero at Large is about a down on his luck everybody man (John Ritter) who decides to become a superhero after coincidentally stopping a robbery. The main idea of the film was used in 2010's Kick-A**, a movie about a kid who sees people ignoring bad behavior and takes matters into his own hands to help his community. Like many of the other reviews here, Hero at Large is neither an all out comedy or action movie, but rather a simple character study involving a man who feels motivated by doing good things. Unfortunately, others in the city want to use the superhero's good press for their purposes. This film is a light drama for a Sunday afternoon, perhaps a bit slow moving, but has plenty of innocent charm. Note some great scene chewing by supporting actors Bert Convey and the late Kevin McCarthy.
Saw this movie first back in 80's and loved it and am glad to own it on DVD now. Not action packed like todays hero films but still a rather charming film in it's own. Any fan of John Ritter will like this one.
My mom took me to see this as a kid, and I rediscovered it years later. One of the best superhero movies there is. It's full of heart, not violence. Easily John Ritter's best film, and good to watch with the family. I recommend it. Remember, it's what Captain Avenger stands for that's important.