Married to the Mob (1988)
Reviewed on 2009 January 9
This is one of my favorite ’80s movies, with Michelle Pfeiffer turning in a funny, sympathetic performance as a mob wife wanting to get out of the life.
“Cucumber” Frank de Marco (Alec Baldwin, pre-phone drama) is, in his eyes, a prime catch. Never mind that he’s a mobster, a thug and a player — he gives his wife and son the life he never had growing up. He’s honestly baffled when his wife Angela (Pfeiffer) announces in a weepy Bronx accent that she “waaants a div-awwwce!” Under the jewel-encrusted Spandex® and big hair, Angela is a good person. All she really wants is to start over and get her son Joey (Anthony J. Nici) away from Frank and his buddies.
It looks like Angela may be able to escape, but nothing is going to be easy for her. Frank’s boss Tony “The Tiger” Russo (Dean Stockwell) has a crush on Angela, and she has to dodge him, his insanely jealous wife Connie (Mercedes Ruehl), and the herd of government agents that want to discuss her husband’s “career” with her.
Jonathan Demme would give us Hannibal Lecter in The Silence of the Lambs three years later; here he has fun with the mafia mythos and merges it with successfully cartoony characters, a wardrobe La Belle would envy, and an ’80s soundtrack. It’s not a deep movie, but it’s a lot of fun.
Three chocolate morsels.