6.3/10
213
4 user 3 critic

Growing Pains (1984)

Four teens on the run from an orphanage spring a fellow orphan recently adopted by a rich family, then trash the whole house.

Director:

Robert Houston
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Pamela Adlon ... Girl Joey (as Pamela Segall)
Georg Olden Georg Olden ... Piper
Michael Hentz Michael Hentz ... Mouse / Bartholomew
Joey Coleman Joey Coleman ... Whitey
Christopher Brown Christopher Brown ... Blackie
Anne De Salvo ... Sister Serena
Murphy Dunne Murphy Dunne ... Mr. Kurtz
Karen Black ... Gladys Fitzpatrick
Martin Mull ... Warren Fitzpatrick
Stephen Stucker Stephen Stucker ... Dr. Bender
Kimmy Robertson ... Sarah Fitzpatrick
John Paul Lussier John Paul Lussier ... Garth Fitzpatrick
Edy Williams ... Mrs. Slatt
Hy Pyke ... Mr. Slatt
Gertrude Flynn Gertrude Flynn ... Mother Celestina
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Storyline

Four teens on the run from an orphanage spring a fellow orphan recently adopted by a rich family, then trash the whole house.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA | Canada

Language:

English | Spanish

Release Date:

November 1984 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Bad Manners See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Growing Pains See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Metrocolor)
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Final credited acting project of Richard Deacon. The film was released 3 months after his death. See more »

Quotes

Girl Joey: Yo mama!
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Connections

Referenced in Best of the Worst: Wheel of the Worst #14 (2017) See more »

Soundtracks

What You're Wearing
Performed by Sparks and Laurie Bell
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User Reviews

 
A Crude Yet Charming 80's Gem
11 June 2012 | by HellBellsLiveWiredSee all my reviews

Bad Manners (1984)

From the back shelf of the local video store comes Bad Manners, a wacky, outrageous, over- the-top comedy film from 1984. The film centers on four troubled adolescent friends who escape their crazy orphanage and set off on an adventure to save another friend whose been adopted by weirdo yuppies. The film more than lives up to its title with the kind of crass and borderline-tasteless humor one could only find in an 80's movie. Featuring plenty of kick- ass music, funny one-liners, naked breasts, fighting, cursing, beer-guzzling and general madness, Bad Manners is a truly entertaining and endearing 80's cult comedy.

I recently rediscovered the film after several years of searching for it with no luck. My parents had rented it on VHS when I was a kid and the movie stuck with me not only because it was so funny and outrageous, but because I felt a real connection to the characters. I got a real sense that their friendship was genuine, and I felt the same way after finally re-watching it ten years later. Quentin Tarantino defined these types of films as 'hang-out' movies, as in movies that make you feel as though you are friends with the characters, like The Big Lebowski for example. A 'hang-out' movie is a perfect way to describe Bad Manners.

The beginning of the film is mostly episodic, focusing on how the main characters spend their everyday lives causing havoc and mayhem in the "Home of the Bleeding Heart" Catholic orphanage. They have declared war on the gung-ho head mistress Sister Serena and ex-Nazi Mr. Kurtz, who zaps misbehaving children with a cattle prod. The place is turned upside down when the eternally cool and antisocial bad ass Piper arrives to stir things up. Intent on escaping, Piper reignites the rebellious spirit of his peers and befriends the tall and lanky Whitey, the token black kid Blackey, the rude problem child 'Mouse', and a tomboy named Joey played by a young Pamela Adlon who would later go on to voice Bobby Hill.

Mouse is soon adopted by a psychotic couple of yuppies played by Karen Black and Martin Mull with absurd campiness. As Mouse wreaks havoc on their home and life, Piper and the gang manage to escape the orphanage and set out on an adventure to rescue him. Their journey leads to several hilarious scenes including mayhem at a bus station and being threatened by a taxi driver with a pick-Axe.

The acting of the kids is actually the high point of the film, which is surprising considering the great majority of child actors suck. Like I said before, their friendship seems genuine and fun, which makes for a very entertaining viewing experience. Maybe the only reason I felt a connection to the kids is because I saw it when I was a kid and could relate to them. I could understand how an up stuck adult could see this film and consider it complete garbage. Let's just say this movie is for the young and the young at heart.

I hesitate on calling this a cult film, because as far as I can tell it doesn't have any following at all. For some reason this film has slipped through the cracks into near-obscurity, but it deserves so much more. It is a truly funny unique film full of personality and a spirit of rebellion. I love this movie.


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