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There Goes the Neighborhood (1992)

PG-13 | | Comedy, Crime, Romance | 30 October 1992 (USA)
Willis Embry, who is a psychologist in a jail, was left by his girl-friend. He has no time to be sad about it because an old man, who is very ill, tells him something about a robbery and ... See full summary »


Bill Phillips


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Jeff Daniels ... Willis Embry
Catherine O'Hara ... Jessie Lodge
Hector Elizondo ... Norman Rutledge
Rhea Perlman ... Lydia Nunn
Judith Ivey ... Peedi Rutledge
Harris Yulin ... Marvin Boyd
Jonathan Banks ... Handsome Harry
Dabney Coleman ... Jeffrey Babitt
Chazz Palminteri ... Lyle Corrente
Heidi Zeigler Heidi Zeigler ... Swan Babitt
Richard Portnow ... Marty Rollins
Jeremy Piven ... Albert Lodge
William Morgan Sheppard ... Trick Bissell
Herb Mitchell ... Mr. Bratesman
Mary Gross ... Mrs. Bratesman


Willis Embry, who is a psychologist in a jail, was left by his girl-friend. He has no time to be sad about it because an old man, who is very ill, tells him something about a robbery and the millions of dollars hidden somewhere. The old man asks Willis to find it and give a part of it to his relative, and he can keep the rest. In the next door some bad guy hears it and this causes the complications ... Written by Kornel Osvart <kornelo@alphanet.hu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


A Hot Comedy About Cold Cash. See more »


Comedy | Crime | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for one use of strong language | See all certifications »






Release Date:

30 October 1992 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Pay Dirt See more »

Filming Locations:

Los Angeles, California, USA

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


In one scene, the criminals and their two hostages are watching 48 Hrs (1982). Jonathan Banks, who plays Handsome Harry in this movie, also had a role in 48 Hrs. See more »


In the basement, Harry rips a glass out of Peedi's hand and smashes it to the ground. A quick cut and he rips the cup out of her hand, again - this time not smashing it. See more »


[first lines]
1st Burglar: [whispering] This one's unlocked.
Martha: [phone rings, answering machine picks up] Willis and Martha can't come to the phone right now. Please leave a message.
Albert Lodge: Hey Willis... it's your wake up call. Willis, get up. Are you listening to me?
Willis Embry: [picks up] Huh?
Albert Lodge: See you in the bubble.
Willis Embry: Yeah, okay...
[hangs up and plays back his messages]
Martha: Willis, I'd tell you this in person, but as you always say, I have a fear of confrontation. I'm leaving you. I need to find my true self and I think traveling ...
See more »


References From Russia with Love (1963) See more »


It's Only Natural
Written by Neil Finn and Tim Finn
Performed by Crowded House
See more »

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User Reviews

Silly and entertaining
9 January 2018 | by vchimpanzeeSee all my reviews

Willis Embry is a psychologist who works at a prison. He has a group of prisoners he works with who seem to have problems but aren't too far gone.And when he finishes working with the group, he visits Trick, who is near death and has a last request. His loot, worth many millions, is buried in a nice New Jersey neighborhood where the same contractor poured all the foundations and was apparently aware of what happened. Trick wants Willis to uncover the loot and give it to Trick's girlfriend.

But Willis visited Trick in his cell, and there is no such thing as privacy. Several members of the group are in the next cell, and one of them writes down the address but gets it wrong.

In the nice neighborhood, there are some nosy people. Jeffrey and Lydia are the worst, even using binoculars. Lydia's daughter Swan doesn't like her stepfather and is very demanding. And she has a paper route and uses her inadequate bike to go around collecting from her customers.

Jessie and Albert are divorcing, and their arguments get violent. They are selling the house and dividing everything. Albert uses a chainsaw on the piano. Realtor Marty, who is very annoying as he shows off the house, points out that this is a rare split piano, a work of art. Albert leaves, and Jessie is left to encounter Willis trying to get in her basement to get the loot.

Meanwhile, Norman is a workaholic whose commute is long, but he likes where he lives. Wife Peedi is not feeling satisfied. And when the landscapers--actually escaped prisoners Harry, Martin and Lyle--show up with guns demanding to get the loot out of the basement, this represents an opportunity for Peedi. She's not happy in her marriage and she falls for Harry.

The loot is difficult to find, especially for those who have the wrong address. There are plenty of situations where people have to lie to keep their secret. For example, Jessie claims Willis is her cousin. And Jeffrey and Lydia find it curious that the landscapers take so long to get the job done--some of them do have to appear to be doing yard work. And why can't they hire them? These people are so rude.

The prisoners are not all that scary. Lyle needs his medication so he does go over the edge sometimes.

And of course there is lots of physical comedy. Norman has a secret which, once it is determined the prisoners came to the wrong address, leads to even more laughs and a really big development. Hint: an underwater photographer is in the credits.

This movie has lots of big-name actors. Sure, it wouldn't have won any Golden Globes or anything. Yes, I saw the ceremony right after I watched this. Many movies were honored for real social significance and important lessons. None of that can be found here. It's just good clean fun--well, cleaned up, apparently, because there were some sound editing problems that reminded me of network broadcasts that had been sanitized. Actually, this movie is close to being family-friendly.

Hector Elizondo, who I know best as the man who built an outdoor products empire with the help of his marketing genius, gives the standout performance here. He seems to be a fairly standard professional man until he starts realizing what an opportunity he has, and then he kind of goes off the deep end.

Heidi Ziegler also stands out as the annoying little girl. Everyone else is good, but the performances are nothing innovative. Just entertaining.

The writing is silly and good for plenty of laughs.

If you just want a good time, this might be for you.

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