Cry-Baby (1990) — Silly song and dance

“The first thing a Cry-Baby girl learns is our bazooms are our weapons.”

Andie’s rating: Campy doesn’t even begin to describe it

Andie’s review: Well, I’ve always been a big fan of movie musicals. Fiddler on the Roof, Grease, West Side Story, Singing in the Rain, etc. But Cry-Baby goes above and beyond the typical musical because of its cheezy, self-aware, self-mocking antics.

The premise is that good-girl Allison Vernon-Williams (beautiful Amy Locane) falls for Wade “Cry-Baby” Walker (Johnny Depp), so named because he always cries a single tear out of his left eye. He, of course, is known as leader of the town gang, called Drapes. After Allison leaves her grandmother’s charm school’s talent show to go with Cry-Baby, what insues is a fight between the Squares and the Drapes over which boy Allison will be with, Cry-Baby or Baldwin the town dipstick.

What makes this movie so much fun is because the musical numbers are positively silly. They absolutely crack me up! When Cry-Baby gets thrown in jail, he and the other jailbirds sing a lovely doowop song about tears and crying and generally the joys of losing your love. Later, when they’re making license plates, they all sing a rousing Elvis-like song called “Doin’ Time for Bein’ Young.” But the Drapes don’t get all the good musical numbers. Baldwin and his cronies get to do some wonderfully cheezy renditions of “Sh-Boom” and “Mr. Sandman.” They also do a mean Bunny Hop down the middle of the street to come pick up Allison.

In addition to the great music and the wonderful leads, the supporting cast hits about every cliché you could come up with. There’s the Drape Ho (played to the hilt by a gorgeous Traci Lords), the pregnant girl, Cry-Baby’s scary grandma Ramona, Allison’s uptight snooty grandmother, the bible-thumping parents with a Drape son, and the list just keeps on going.

This movie is basically an hour and a half of silly entertainment that I think most musical lovers would really enjoy.

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