What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that the main characters in this movie are kidnappers and convicts. A kidnapped baby is and taken into perilous situations throughout, such as car chases, bank robberies, gunfights and the like. One character is a bounty hunter of sorts who blows up a rabbit with a hand grenade for fun. Nothing is terribly graphic in the movie, and it is all played for comedic value.
What's the story?
This early entry from the quirky Coen Brothers concerns an ex-convict named H.I. (Nicolas Cage) who falls in love and marries a police officer named Edwina or "Ed" (Holly Hunter). After learning that they cannot have children, the couple decides to kidnap a baby boy quintuplet from wealthy furniture mogul, Nathan Arizona (Trey Wilson). But when Arizona posts a large reward for his baby's safe return, H.I.'s two former prison buddies (John Goodman and William Forsythe) show up unannounced, and a ruthless, baby-selling bounty hunter (Randall "Tex" Cobb) attempts to hunt him down.
Is it any good?
RAISING ARIZONA is a traditional farce. There are plenty of laughs (such as H.I. telling convenience store clerk "I'll be taking these Huggies and whatever cash ya got."), but this movie has heart, too: A central theme in the movie is how hard it is to keep a family together.
Of course, car chases, gunfights, and chaos abound, and most of the time in the presence of a young infant. However, none of it has any more devastating an effect than when dynamite explodes in Daffy Duck's face. Indeed, this is merely a cartoon with real actors, and the result being hilarious, but only for mature viewers.
Families can talk about...
Families can talk about what makes this movie funny. Kidnappings and bounty-hunters aren't usually treated so lightly -- why are they funny here? Can you think of other movies that make light of usually serious subject matter? Where do you draw the line between offbeat and truly tasteless territory?