Throw Momma from the Train (1987)
Front Cover Actor
Danny DeVito Owen Lift
Billy Crystal Larry Donner
Anne Ramsey Momma
Kim Greist Beth
Kate Mulgrew Margaret, Larry's Ex-Wife
Annie Ross Mrs. Hazeltine
Branford Marsalis Lester
Rob Reiner Joel
Bruce Kirby Detective DeBenedetto
Oprah Winfrey Herself
Movie Details
Genre Comedy
Director Danny DeVito
Studio Orion
Language English
Audience Rating PG-13 (Parental Guidance Suggested)
Running Time 88 mins
Country USA
Color Color
Plot
The "exchange murders" plot gambit, played with utter solemnity in Hitchcock's Strangers on a Train , is used as the launching pad for raucous laughter in Throw Momma From the Train . Director/star Danny DeVito plays a middle-aged bachelor, totally dominated by his gorgon mother, played with hilarious ferocity by Anne Ramsey . Billy Crystal co-stars as a creative-writing professor, saddled with a vituperative, thoroughly despicable ex-wife ( Kate Mulgrew ). Signing up for Crystal's writing course, DeVito has trouble at first with character development and construction in his stories. Crystal recommends that DeVito watch a screening of Strangers on a Train , which he considered a model of tight, concise storytelling. DeVito is so entranced by the film that he decides to emulate Strangers star Robert Walker . That is, DeVito wants Crystal to bump off his mother, in exchange for DeVito's murder of Mulgrew. Without being asked, DeVito does away with Mulgrew (or so it seems), then hounds Crystal to the point of killing Ramsey. This being a comedy, the actual consequences of the swap-murder plot aren't nearly as calamitous as in the Hitchcock film. Cinematographer Barry Sonnenfield would apply the "black humor" lessons learned in Throw Momma From the Train for his own directorial debut, The Addams Family (1991). — Hal Erickson
Personal Details
Seen It Yes
Index 15
In Collection Yes
Product Details
Format DVD
Region Region 1
UPC 027616861023
Release Date 2001
Nr of Disks/Tapes 1
Extra Features
Color Closed-captioned Widescreen