IMDb > Crazy Mama (1975)
Crazy Mama
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Crazy Mama (1975) More at IMDbPro »


Overview

User Rating:
5.7/10   369 votes »
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Up 24% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Director:
Writers:
Robert Thom (screenplay)
Frances Doel (story)
Contact:
View company contact information for Crazy Mama on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
June 1975 (USA) See more »
Genre:
Tagline:
In 1957 Cheryl Drove Her Mom's Chevy on a Heavy Date: Got Knocked Up, Knocked Over a Bank, Smashed Four Police Cars, and Kidnapped Her Stepfather. It Was a Crazy Year! See more »
Plot:
Jonathan Demme directs this joyous relentlessly kitschy celebration of 50's America: opportunity, rock'n'roll... See more » | Add synopsis »
NewsDesk:
(10 articles)
User Reviews:
Worth a Closer Look See more (13 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order)

Cloris Leachman ... Melba

Stuart Whitman ... Jim Bob

Ann Sothern ... Sheba

Jim Backus ... Mr. Albertson

Don Most ... Shawn (as Donn Most)

Linda Purl ... Cheryl
Bryan Englund ... Snake
Merie Earle ... Bertha

Sally Kirkland ... Ella Mae
Clint Kimbrough ... Daniel

Dick Miller ... Wilbur Janeway

Carmen Argenziano ... Supermarket Manager

Harry Northup ... FBI Man
Ralph James ... Sheriff - 1932
Dinah Englund ... Melba - 1932

Rob Reece ... Mover (as Robert Reece)
Mickey Fox ... Mrs. Morgan

John Aprea ... Marvin
Cynthia Songé ... Lucinda (as Cynthia Songey)
Hal Marshall ... Bartender
Beach Dickerson ... Desk Clerk
Barbara Ann Grimes ... Lady Teller (as Barbara Walters)
Bill McLean ... Bank Manager
Bill Luckey ... Newsman
Warren Miller ... Justice of the Peace
Saul Krugman ... Colonel Snodgrass
Vince Barnett ... Homer
Tisha Sterling ... Sheba - 1932
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Suzanne M. Kelly ... Baby
Skip E. Lowe
David Boyle ... (uncredited)

John Milius ... Cop (uncredited)

Bill Paxton ... John (uncredited)

Dennis Quaid ... Bellhop (uncredited)

Will Sampson ... Indian At Trading (uncredited)

Directed by
Jonathan Demme 
 
Writing credits
Robert Thom (screenplay)

Frances Doel (story)

Produced by
Julie Corman .... producer
Peter Cornberg .... associate producer
 
Original Music by
Snotty Scotty and The Hankies 
 
Cinematography by
Bruce Logan (director of photography)
 
Film Editing by
Allan Holzman 
Lewis Teague 
 
Art Direction by
Peter Jamison 
 
Set Decoration by
Linda Spheeris 
 
Costume Design by
Jac McAnelly 
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Lamar Card .... assistant director
Evelyn Purcell .... second unit director
 
Art Department
William Sandell .... property master (as Bill Sandell)
 
Sound Department
Richard L. Anderson .... sound effects editor
Don Coufal .... boom operator
Robert Gravenor .... sound mixer
 
Stunts
Jim Burk .... stunts
William H. Burton Jr. .... stunts (as Bill Burton)
Alan Gibbs .... stunt coordinator
James M. Halty .... stunts (as James Halty)
Tommy J. Huff .... stunts (as Thomas Huff)
Gary McLarty .... stunts
Regina Parton .... stunts
Walter Robles .... stunts
Danny Rogers .... stunts
 
Camera and Electrical Department
Tak Fujimoto .... photographer: second unit
Michael Katz .... grip
Jim Morris .... key grip
Gerald B. Wolfe .... still photographer
 
Editorial Department
Glenn K. Shimada .... assistant editor (as Glenn Shimada)
 
Music Department
Marshall Leib .... music coordinator
 
Other crew
Nancy Zearfoss .... location manager
Don McKenzie .... location scout (uncredited)
 

Production CompaniesDistributors

Additional Details

Also Known As:
Runtime:
83 min
Country:
Language:
Color:
Color (Metrocolor)
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Certification:

Did You Know?

Trivia:
Bill Paxton's film debut.See more »
Movie Connections:
References Man of the West (1958)See more »
Soundtrack:
LollipopSee more »

FAQ

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
1 out of 3 people found the following review useful.
Worth a Closer Look, 22 May 2011
Author: dougdoepke from Claremont, USA

A band of beauty shop desperadoes cartoonishly plunder their way from California to Arkansas, to reclaim the old family farm.

Wow! No energy crisis here. Just plug in the nation's generator and it'll light up from Broadway to Sunset with Denver in between. The movie's a classic of editing, scripting and directing; at the same time, add drive-in Oscars to actresses Leachman and Sothern.

This is the hillbilly masterpiece Roger Corman was building toward with his series of backwoods desperadoes. Sure, much is silly, along with the usual cartoonish violence and enough car crashes to put on an extra shift in Detroit. But there's still enough subtext to make you care.

This is America of forgotten people, the country's poor rural whites, one step ahead of bill-collectors and two steps from the law. Check out the cross-country tour of 1950's kitsch— the Burma Shave, the seedy motels, the lonely highway outposts—still familiar to thousands of us. And whose great idea was Leachman's tiger sheath dress that about says it all.

But don't overlook the subtext that slyly mocks the conventions of the time. No Ozzie and Harriet here. It's three generations of mother-daughter, ousted from their cut-rate beauty salon, picking up new family members as they rob and roar along—an 80-year old Granny, a 50's greaser, a philandering cowboy. And don't forget sweet daughter Cheryl's already knocked up, but can't decide which boy to hook up with. But then maybe she doesn't have to— and so much for 50's-style monogamy. Or consider hormonal old Granny who's still got eyes for the boys, plus young Snake who eyes her back—no sir, no ageism here. Or Jim Bob's wealthy wife, sobbing for Jim Bob on TV, that is, when not entertaining the sheriff on the side— and so much for the upper class.

Then there's the banker's moneyed class, the fugitive family's natural enemy. I love that big fancy wedding that suddenly explodes as the girls fulfill their 30-year debt of honor. Or when Sheba redesigns the banker's headstone with a barking pistol. No sir, it's sweat equity that earns a farmer his land and not the banker's money— too bad the law's on the wrong side here and we're made to feel it.

Then, of course, there's the Lord that keeps getting invoked along with a whiskey bottle. But it's not the religion of the church. It's the Sweet Jesus of desperate folk clinging to one another in a hostile world and hoping things turn out in the end. And speaking of end, what an inspired one here—the family that works together stays together, even if they can't seem to get the rules right.

No indeed, snooty Hollywood never recognizes kitschy films like this. But it's got style, humor, and a penetrating subtext that makes you feel rather than merely observe. Too bad ace screenwriter Thom died soon after. He had a real knack for the material. But more importantly, knew how to combine with director Demme's electric style. The result, in my little book, is worth 20 of those lumbering prestige films of the time. You know, the kind with Richard and Elizabeth that usually got the publicity space. All that vitality makes Mama a great extension of the 40's B-movie. Plus, it's funny as heck. So check it out.

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See more (13 total) »

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