Monday, August 16, 2010

Movie Delight Monday

Well folks, today is my last day of summer.  I work tomorrow, and then I will officially be a college sophomore come Wednesday.  I will not freak out I will not freak out I will not freak out.

In celebration of my delayed return to school,  I've decided to cover a film that focuses on the grandness of childhood and why sometimes it's easier to stay a kid and refuse the whole grownup thing.  

I know most of you will not have seen this one.  I won't even be surprised if you've never heard of it, either.  99% of my friends who have seen it only watched because I bugged them about it until they caved.  Now it's one of their favorites, of course. 

Released in 1991, one of the best stupid comedies ever made (in my opinion):

 It stars one of my favorite late 80s/early 90s actresses, Phoebe Cates.  Guys remember her mostly for the pool/bathroom scene in Fast Times at Ridgemont High.  I also loved her in Shag (another of my all-time favorite films). 

Also starring as Fred is British comedian Rick Mayall, who I have never seen in any other film or television show.  Ever. However, after checking out his bio on IMDB I've learned that he's done quite a bit of work in the UK.

The story begins with a little girl in her bed at night, with mother reading a story about a princess.   After a moment the girl asks her mother how she knows they lived happily ever after.  Her mother responds, "Because she was a good little girl.  If she had been naughty, the prince would have run away."  The little girl replies, "What a pile of sh#@." 

Fast-forward to present day, and Lizzie is all grown up.  She has the perfect husband (played by Tim Matheson), a great job, the perfect life.  Suddenly it all falls apart, and she goes home to stay with her mother (Marsha Mason, who really scared me as a kid.  Think Joan Crawford in Mommie Dearest).  Lizzie's emotional state causes her childhood imaginary friend, Fred, to reappear.  

 Flashbacks show us various shenanigans young Lizzie (played by the adorable Ashley Peldon) got into with Fred, such as playing "burglars" and robbing her own house, making mud pies on the dining room table and cutting her hair.

Fred caused so much trouble for Lizzie that her mother got rid of him by taping shut the jack-in-the-box that Fred lives in.  The disagreement about Fred between her parents was also the last straw on their failed marriage, prompting Lizzie's dad to leave them. 

As Lizzie tries to get her life back, Fred interferes and causes problems at every turn.  People start to think Lizzie's crazy because she can see Fred and have conversations with him, but obviously no one else can see him.

Enter childhood friend Mickey Bunce (played by Ron Eldard), who seems amused by Lizzie's bizarre behavior.  They start to get closer - much to the dismay of a jealous Fred - and Lizzie's world just gets even more dysfunctional. 

Fred's antics lead to a houseboat disaster, a mall assault and a boardroom freak-out by Lizzie's best friend Janie (Carrie Fisher). Eventually Lizzie starts to get her old life back, only to realize it might not be what she really wants. 

This film is basically just a fun glimpse at what life with an imaginary friend would be like.  I never had imaginary friends (probably because I had siblings and about a dozen cousins) so I think if I had one, I'd want it to be someone like Fred!


  1. This is like one of my favorite movies of all time. No lie. Someone got it for my sister many many years ago and we would sit and watch it over and over again. We actually ruined the tape. My mom had to go out and get us another copy because we were too sad to go on.

  2. It is a fun movie. And her son Owen was awesome in The Squid & The Whale. Cool review. And thanks so much for the feedback too.

  3. OMG! Drop Dead Fred was one of my favorite movies growing up!! I LOVE THAT MOVIE!!!!!!!!! AHHHH! Thanks for the memories :) :) :)

  4. OMG my friends and I used to crack up at that movie! I even own the DVD!! "You look like a big bruise"

  5. I remember this one!! Its a great movie.
    Nice review!
    About Shag, I am so happy someone else knows that movie! I thought I was the only one. I was looking to buy it online but couldnt find it, I used to love that movie!

  6. Try Amazon. I buy all of my old movies from them. They have just about everything.

  7. Dog poo, dog poo, lovely smelly dog poo.

    God I love Rick Mayall, he's a comedy legend here in the UK. If I could recommend to you one other funny thing he's done (and he's done SO many funny shows/movies) I would say you had to watch the TV show 'The Young Ones'. It's HILARIOUS.