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Jonathan Demme directs this joyous relentlessly kitschy celebration of 50's America: opportunity, rock'n'roll, and the road. He follows three generations of women and the men they pick up, for a crime spree from California to the old family homestead in Arkansas. Written by
Concorde - New Horizons (with permission).
I watched this movie as if it was the third in AIP's "Mama" trilogy. Big mistake. Of course 'Bloody Mama', 'Big Bad Mama' and 'Crazy Mama' have only tenuous links at best, and Roger Corman has no actual hands on relationship to this one, I realize that. Sadly 'Crazy' reaches neither the twisted brilliance of 'Bloody' or the sheer trashy good times of 'Big Bad'. In fact, it's pretty crappy all round.
Jonathon Demme's second feature as director, following up his sleazy women in prison flick 'Chained Heat', which wipes the floor with this limp effort. I won't blame Demme entirely, and must mention the sit-com-ish script, and the largely unappealing Cloris Leachman in the lead role, who isn't fit to kiss Shelley Winters or Angie Dickinson's boots. The rest of the cast are mainly familiar faces from TV, including Ralph Malph and Thurston Howell III, but also keep an eye open for Roger Corman legend Dick Miller, and Doughboy from 'Taxi Driver'.
'Crazy Mama', though set in the 50s rather than the Depression, follows the loose structure of the previous Mamas - strong matriarch falls on hard times and turns to crime - but goes nowhere with it. Less sex, violence and darkness, and more (alleged) laughs, this is almost Disney Corman, and that means it will please just about nobody. The only notable thing about this disappointing fare is the good soundtrack of oldies. Apart from that I can think of absolutely NO reason to recommend it.
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