Crazy People (1990)

R  |   |  Comedy  |  13 April 1990 (USA)
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Reviews: 24 user | 11 critic

A bitter ad executive who has reached his breaking point, finds himself in a mental institution where his career actually begins to thrive with the help of the hospital's patients.


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Stephen Bachman
Alan North ...
Paul Bates ...
Dick Cusack ...
Floyd Vivino ...
Eddie Aris
Dr. Liz Baylor
Ben Hammer ...
Dr. Koch
David Packer ...
Mark Olander


Emory works in advertising, and is beginning to crack-up. His latest idea is honesty, e.g. "Volvos, Yes they are boxy, but they're safe". This doesn't go down too well with the boss, so Emory is sent to a psychiatric hospital to 'recover'. Meanwhile, back at the office, Emory's work is accidentally sent to the printers. His ads are a huge success. But now Emory has fallen for Kathy (another patient) and so doesn't want to leave. Written by Rob Hartill

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


A comedy about truth in advertising. See more »




R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

13 April 1990 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Les fous de la pub  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$13,236,513 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The advertisements for Porsche, Jaguar and Volvo cars read: "PORSCHE. It's a little too small to get laid in. But you get laid the minute you get out" and "JAGUAR. Sleek and Smart. For men who'd like hand jobs from beautiful women they hardly know" and "Buy Volvos. They're boxy but they're good. We know they're not sexy. This is not a smart time to be sexy anyway, with so many diseases around. Be safe instead of sexy. VOLVO. Boxy, but Good". See more »


Drucker: [reading ad copy] Metamucil: It helps you go to the toilet. If you don't use it, you'll get cancer and die.
See more »

Crazy Credits

At the end of the credits, a "special issue" of Advertising Age spins in, with a cover portrait proclaiming the main characters to be "Emperors of Madison Ave." See more »


Referenced in Psych: In Plain Fright (2010) See more »


Music by Michael Portis and Richard Kosinski
See more »

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User Reviews

18 December 1999 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I'm kind of stuck. Half of this movie is the most hilarious I have seen this decade, the other half I could very well have lived without.

"Crazy People" talks about two types of nut cases: ones that are committed to institutions and the others who think they are normal and live on the other side of the wall. Of course, the main crux of the story is when Moore's life takes a nose-dive and he cracks, writing brutally savage ads for some very well-known products ("Quaker Oats - How does it taste? Who knows, but at least the BOX is cute"). Of course, nothing tops the tag line he makes for that horror movie "The Freak" or the ticket lady's comment about this movie later on.

His bosses put him away and then, when his printed ads catch fire and turn advertising on its ear, they recruit him to write more. Only this time, he gets the others in the asylum with him to write ads, too.

Now, this part is funny.

What isn't funny is when they start to take the story seriously and try to shoehorn drama into parts where it doesn't make every single person out as some level of wacko. Drama has its place but not in a movie that takes potshots at Metamucil.

Moore is really great, this is his last really funny role since "Arthur". Reiser has some good scenes as does Hannah, Walsh, Paymer and Ruehl and then there's the ads. My gosh, has there ever been anything ever written as funny as these? Not since "Mad Magazine", really.

"Crazy People" is at least half great; the craziest things in it, though, are the people who thought it should have serious parts.

Five stars for "Crazy People" - watch it for the ads.

5 of 8 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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