Combustible Celluloid
 
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With: Johnny Depp, Amy Locane, Susan Tyrrell, Polly Bergen, Iggy Pop, Ricki Lake, Traci Lords, Kim McGuire, Darren E. Burrows, Stephen Mailer, Kim Webb, Alan J. Wendl, Troy Donahue, Mink Stole, Joe Dallesandro, Willem Dafoe
Written by: John Waters
Directed by: John Waters
MPAA Rating: Unrated, formerly PG-13
Running Time: 92
Date: 04/06/1990
IMDB

Cry-Baby (1990)

3 1/2 Stars (out of 4)

Tears and Loathing

By Jeffrey M. Anderson

This was the movie that convinced me, after months of ridiculing him for"21 Jump Street," that Johnny Depp could actually act. Depp stars as thetitle role in John Waters' ode to the 1950s, a leather-jacket wearingrebel who sings rock 'n' roll and sheds a single tear from time to time.A member of the "drapes," a group of social outcasts, he falls in lovewith a member of the "squares," cute Allison (Amy Locane). That's prettymuch the entire plot, with the squares trying to prevent the loversgetting together. A great cast of misfits rounds things out: Tracy Lordsin her first non-porn role, Susan Tyrell (an Oscar nominee for FatCity), Iggy Pop, Ricki Lake (also in Hairspray), Polly Bergen, and smallroles for Patty Hearst and Mink Stole. Willem Dafoe has one scene as asadistic prison guard. (Sadly, Divine passed away two years earlier.)Cry-Baby has plenty of Waters touches, such as bizarre musical numbers,slimy making-out sequences and one character drinking a glass of tears.Working with the biggest budget of his entire career and mainstreamproducers like Brian Grazer and Jim Abrahams, Waters somehow does notlet anything detract from his usual vision. Pink Flamingos fans willfind Cry-Baby decidedly tame, but it's one of my favorites.

DVD Details: New Line long ago released all the John Waters films to DVD, but this was the one lone hold-out, stuck in the Universal vaults. Now Universal has made up for it by allowing Waters to piece together a longer director's cut with about four new minutes of footage inserted back into the film. The disc also comes with Waters' usual brilliant commentary track, a feature-length making-of documentary and some disgusting deleted scenes (including a sequence that parodies Traci Lords' porno career).