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How to Beat the High Cost of Living (1980)

PG | | Comedy, Crime | 11 July 1980 (USA)
Oregon, 1980: Jane, Elaine and Louise are all feeling the effects of inflation and cannot afford, as the title states, the high cost of living. Jane cannot afford a babysitter or get ... See full summary »

Director:

Robert Scheerer

Writers:

Robert Kaufman (screenplay), Leonora Thuna (story)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Susan Saint James ... Jane
Jane Curtin ... Elaine
Jessica Lange ... Louise
Richard Benjamin ... Albert
Eddie Albert ... Max
Cathryn Damon ... Natalie
Dabney Coleman ... Jack Heintzel
Fred Willard ... Robert
Art Metrano ... Gas Station Attendant
Ronnie Schell ... Bill Pike
Michael Bell ... Tom
Sybil Danning ... Charlotte
Al Checco Al Checco ... Tim Lundy
Susan Tolsky Susan Tolsky ... Patty
Garrett Morris ... Power & Light Man
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Storyline

Oregon, 1980: Jane, Elaine and Louise are all feeling the effects of inflation and cannot afford, as the title states, the high cost of living. Jane cannot afford a babysitter or get married and if she wants privacy with her boyfriend, she has to sleep in the car. Even worse, her war veteran father comes to live with her to turn her life upside down. Louise lives a happy life with her veterinarian husband, Albert. She runs an antique shop on the side, but since it doesn't take in any profit, the IRS considers it a hobby. She needs to come up with the money to keep it going, or she will be trouble with the IRS. Elaine's husband has left her for another woman and without any money. She is in a constant struggle with banks, power companies, and gas stations. She needs money to get by and also catches the eye of police officer Jack. The local mall is having a contest that features a giant money ball that states it will help fight the inflation. Elaine comes up with a plan to steal the ... Written by Pat McCurry

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

They're No Angels See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Crime

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

11 July 1980 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

How to Beat the High Cost of Living See more »

Filming Locations:

Eugene, Oregon, USA See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Stereo

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

As an outdoor scene was being filmed, a man drove by and yelled, "Jane, you ignorant slut!" in reference to Jane Curtin's and Dan Aykroyd's "Point/Counterpoint" running skit on Saturday Night Live (1975), and the crew cracked up laughing. See more »

Goofs

Jane claims to be familiar with paddling a canoe yet she sits in the wrong end when she begins to paddle it away while stealing it. See more »

Quotes

Albert: Louise, I swear to you there is no money. If you only knew what was going on in that hospital. It's not only the IRS, I'm in deep financial trouble, and I need you to hold me, to hug me, to kiss me, to reassure me that everything isn't as hopeless as it looks.
Louise: The only thing that is hopeless, Albert is that you're horny 24 hours a day.
See more »

Alternate Versions

Video versions edit a scene where Jessica Lange's character is hiding in the shoe store bathroom while one of the stage show performers comes in and uses it. It cuts off just as she notices the footsteps. The scene is most likely eliminated because the guy was singing and the song might be copyrighted. See more »

Connections

References The Bad News Bears (1976) See more »

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User Reviews

Low Cost for High Comedy
16 October 2002 | by BlueghostSee all my reviews

When I saw this film in the theatre the entire audience was alive with laughter. There's more story here than most contemporary comedies, which may make for some head scratching by younger folks seeing this film, but the gags hold for anybody who's had to scrimp and save to make ends meat.

This is a timeless film for anyone (woman particularly) who've fallen on hard times. It was a hit when it was first released, and still gets laughs today.


5 of 6 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
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