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Synopsis for
Cry-Baby (1990) More at IMDbPro »

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In the school gym, students file in two lines for Polio vaccines. It is here that the audience is introduced to the main cast. The Drapes: Lenora Frigid (Kim Webb), Drape hussy with a manipulative streak and her eyes set on Cry-Baby, Mona "Hatchet-Face" Malnorowski (Kim McGuire), tough as nails, with a face that could shatter glass; Wanda Woodward (Traci Lords), obviously the school siren in tight clothes and too much make-up; Milton Hackett (Darren E. Burrows), Hatchet-Face's boyfriend, a light-hearted guy with a ever-present smile and a constant joke-maker; Pepper Walker (Ricki Lake), a teenage mother of two and pregnant, rough and tough and loyal; and Wade "Cry-Baby" Walker (Johnny Depp), the drape heartthrob that was raised a gentleman by delinquents like himself. His manners and politeness are a step above that of the average Drape; however, he loves his gang and his culture. They're Drapes, and they're proud.

Here, we also meet the two main Squares: Allison Vernon-Williams (Amy Locane), a Square with a rebellious side that's 'tired of being good', who, after one moment of eye contact has stolen Cry-Baby's heart, and her Square boyfriend Baldwin (Stephen Mailer), who is jealous and territorial and has two dreams in life: wife-ing up Allison and taking down Cry-Baby and his gang.

After the vaccines are administered, the students are released. We meet Wanda's mother and father (Patricia Hearst and David Nelson), the school crossing guard and bus driver, respectively. They're both blissfully ignorant and extremely uncool. Allison introduces herself to Cry-Baby and his friends and Cry-Baby invites Allison to hang out with the Drapes. Allison's grandmother, Mrs. Vernon-Williams (Polly Bergen) and Baldwin show up with the same message for Cry-Baby: stay away from Allison.

Though Cry-Baby, born and raised an outlaw, has trouble with listening, and he and his friends tail Allison and her grandmother on the street, driving up beside them and serenading Allison, complete with a blown kiss.

After the Vernon-Williams' and Baldwin arrive at the RSVP Charm school, the academy run by Mrs. Vernon-Williams, Baldwin and his Whiffles (Drew Ebersole, Kenny Curtis and Scott Neilson) perform their act in the annual RSVP Talent Show, a lame Doo-Wop song {Sh-Boom}. Afterwards, Allison performs her own song {A Teenage Prayer}. This is where we see her and Baldwin's differing goals in life; while Baldwin watches Allison and imagines her in a wedding dress complete with bouquet and veil, Allison's imagination turns Baldwin and each of the Whiffles into Cry-Baby.

Meanwhile, at Turkey Point, the Drape swimming hole (which Mrs. Vernon-Williams ungraciously calls the 'Redneck Riviera'), we meet Milton's parents (Joe Dallesandro and Joey Heatherton), a devout religious couple preaching to the delinquents to repent and accept Jesus into their hearts. As Cry-Baby's gang walks through Turkey Point greeting all their friends, Lenora once again tries to sink her claws into Cry-Baby with a 'CB' burned into her thigh via stickers and sun-bathing. She tells him that she needs a date for that night's Jukebox Jamboree, but Cry-Baby (and his gang) tells her that it's NOT gonna happen.

After Cry-Baby's uncle Belvedere (Iggy Pop) and Grandmother Ramona (Susan Tyrrell) gift him with a brand new motorcycle, he travels to the RSVP talent show, politely asking Mrs. Vernon-Williams if Allison can join him at the Jukebox Jamboree at Turkey Point. Mrs. Vernon-Williams reluctantly allows when Cry-Baby shows his poise after Baldwin attacks him.

At the Jukebox Jamboree, Pepper, Wanda and Hatchet-Face give Allison a 'bad girl beauty make-over', exchanging her elegant white gown for leather pants and a halter top, complete with a new hairstyle and a face full of make-up. Allison joins Belvedere and Ramona in the audience as Milton, Wanda, Pepper, and Hatchet-Face (as the Cry-Baby Combo) back Cry-Baby for his performance {King Cry-Baby}. Lenora, in true groupie fashion throws her panties at Cry-Baby as he sings, glaring at Allison as she does so. Cry-Baby, however, just kicks them aside before bringing Allison onstage to song with him. Allison sings a line as her 'good girl', and then exchanges it for roaring her second line, bringing her Drape side full circle.

After the performance, Allison and Cry-Baby find a spot in a field where Cry-Baby confesses his love for Allison, and give her her first French kiss. Allison talks about her parents' death, telling Cry-Baby she's an orphan. Cry-Baby reveals that his father was The Alphabet Bomber, famous for setting off bombs in alphabetical order (airport, barbershop, car wash, etc.), and that he and Cry-Baby's mother both died in the electric chair.

As Cry-Baby and Allison share their family pasts, Baldwin and a group of vengeful Squares sneak into Turkey Point to vandalize the Drapes' cars, Cry-Baby's motorcycle, eventually incite an all-out brawl with the Drapes.

Lenora lies to Allison, telling her that she's pregnant with Cry-Baby's child, and Baldwin tells her that the Drapes started everything.

All the Drapes, including Allison are arrested and brought to court, where Milton, Hatchet-Face and Wanda are released to their parents and Allison to her grandmother, Ramona and Belvedere are fined $1000 apiece, Peppers kids, Snare-Drum and Susie-Q (Jonathan Benya and Scout Raskin) are put in an orphanage, and Cry-Baby is sentenced to the Maryland Training School for Boys until his 21st birthday.

Cry-Baby sings out his longing for Allison on his first night {Teardrops Are Falling}, while Lenora manipulates a clip of Cry-Baby admitting his happiness and pride at being a juvenile delinquent into his pride of being a soon-to-be father by telling the reporters that she's pregnant.

Allison hears this on the radio and gives up her Drape style for a floral dress and her Square life once again. Baldwin convinces her to return to him (in the form of a serenade in the director's cut {The Naughty Lady Of Shady Lane}) and Allison says live to reporters that she wants nothing to do with Cry-Baby anymore. Cry-Baby hears this on the radio and gets so angry that he breaks into spontaneous song and dance {Doin' Time For Bein' Young}, which lands him The Hole with his fellow Drape friend, Dupree (Robert Tyree), who gives Cry-Baby a teardrop tattoo for Allison. Cry-Baby uses the sewer in the room to try to escape, unknowingly passing right past Hatchet and Milton, who have stolen a helicopter to break Cry-Baby out, unsuccessfully. Cry-Baby eventually takes a wrong turn that leads him straight to the barbershop of the prison, and straight into the hands of a dozen guards.

Meanwhile, Wanda runs away from home after her parents reveal that they've signed her up for an exchange program and she's scheduled to leave for Sweden that afternoon. Pepper, Ramona and Belvedere break all the children out of the inhumane Chatterbox Orphanage and head to the opening of the Enchanted Forest, Maryland's first theme park, and where Baldwin, the Whiffles and Allison are performing {Mr. Sandman}. Allison sees Lenora (now in Square fashion) blow a kiss to Baldwin and smacks him before being told by Cry-Baby's gang that 'she sung with the Squares, now sing with the Drapes'. Baldwin insists that he loves her; Lenora announces that she's now a Square, and Mrs. Vernon-Williams (now warmed up to Cry-Baby and his gang and even sporting a skull and crossbones pin) tells Allison to 'pick the man that loves her the most'.

We cut immediately to Cry-Baby's gang and Mrs. Vernon-Williams outside the prison with Allison singing on a hot rod hood in a sexy red dress {Please, Mr. Jailer} vying for Cry-Baby's release from the Judge (Robert Walsh).

Cry-Baby is summoned to the visitation room in the nick of time, right before his hair is shaved off. Allison dances for him and they sing to each other, Cry-Baby's need for Allison driving him to shatter the glass separating them, just as the Judge runs in to release him from his sentence.

At Cry-Baby's formal release, the Drapes (complete with Mrs. Vernon-Williams) arrive to celebrate and the Squares (complete with Lenora on Baldwin's arm) arrive to jeer.

Baldwin reveals that his grandfather was a prison guard, and the one that flipped the switch and electrocuted Cry-Baby's parents.

Cry-Baby challenges Baldwin to a game of Chicken with a twist; he and Baldwin on top of the car. Baldwin agrees, and Allison and the Drapes perform a soundtrack to the game {High School Hellcats}.

Baldwin chickens out and Cry-Baby wins. Everyone sheds a single tear, except for Cry-Baby, who has finally let go and is able to cry from both eyes.
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