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Throw Momma From The Train has the title, plot and characters. It should be funny. But the slapstick core is missing.
One of my favorite movies. Original, funny and well done!
While the leads are charming and funny as ever, the material here is too underdeveloped to sustain the whole movie (which is overly padded with arbitrary, unnecessary gags as it is). Add to that the flat and outdated gender politics (especially the cringe-inducing chorus of Crystal's "sluts"), and by the time the characters finally reach the eponymous train, you'll be ready to jump off, too.
The acting is dreadful, Danny DeVito's direction is an awful joke and the result overall is that this film should have never been made.
Quite brilliant and utterly ridiculous. Underrated, forgotten.
Dark and a little over the top story, it is a good movie that holds up outside of the technology. Really typewriters in 1987? The second act with Billy hiding from the cops dragged the plot a little long for me. However, the plot wrapped up nicely in the end. Without Devito or Crystal, it would have been a forgotten 80s comedy as both are the real reason why this is any good.
Billy Crystal and Danny Devito star in the black comedy Throw Mamma from the Train. Billy Crystal is Larry, a writer who is having a case of writer's block, and blames it on his ex-wife who stole the credit for his book which is a hit. He teaches a course on writing, and encounters Owen (Devito). Larry is a terrible writer and constantly consults Larry for advice on how to improve his writing. As the two continue to get to know each other, they both discover that they both hate a woman in their life and this is what they have the most in common.
Owen eventually believes that Larry wants him to murder his wife, and in return Larry will murder Owen's mother who drives him crazy. When Larry's wife does wind up dead, Larry is in a panic as he is sure he will become the prime suspect. Owen insists he performed the murder, and asks Larry to return the favor and his end of the bargain. The comedy ensues as Larry goes paranoid trying to avoid the police and the constant attempts Owen has trying to convince Larry to murder his mother.
Throw Mamma from the Train is definitely a black comedy and for a 1987 picture it was probably unique and somewhat ahead of its time. The film is a parody of Hitchcock's Stranger on a Train, and a scene from this movie is a driving force behind the plot. Devito as Owen comes off too normal to believe that Larry would really want him to kill his wife in exchange for Larry killing his mother. Crystal's comedic antics are mostly antiquated and not nearly as funny as the movie seems to believe they are. Anne Ramsey earned an Oscar nomination for best supporting actress and it is warranted. Her performance makes you root for the characters to actually kill her, which really helps drive the story. Devito's directorial debut is noted, as the film's style matches the intent of the film. Overall Throw Mamma from the Train really is only for those who love the two actors, or are a huge fan of black comedies.
I think it's fair to say that ANY co-star with Danny Devito would make an "odd couple", however Billy Crystal and he have a great chemistry in this film. The 'momma' is so well cast as annoying that you honestly want to see her murdered and would be disappointed if she weren't. Yes- that bad. Entertaining, but not worth watching more than once in a lifetime. Rating: 6.5 / 10
hilarious...great all around
This comedy is a prime example of a good idea for a movie but nothing to say about that idea. Seriously, it's as if the screenplay was written on a napkin. A great title and premise does not make a great movie and this film is proof.