Category Archives: Outrageous Fortune

Tuesday, December 4, 2018

Bette Midler’s 15 greatest film performances, ranked worst to best

Golden Derby
Bette Midler’s 15 greatest film performances, ranked worst to best
By Robert Pius, Chris Beachum
December 1, 2018

Bette Midler at the Tony's

Mister D: Well, as long as they had the correct #1 I knew I would be a happy gay cis-gender – white privileged man (is that correct for me? I can’t keep up) My pronouns are: “Just call me any old thing” because frankly, I won’t get offended (not after all the verbally abusive men I have personally slept with. But ya’ll ain’t interested in that! I loved what they said about this Number One performance because it’s true. I would have ranked some higher, and some lower, but that’s just my opinion. I would have found some way to get “And Then She Found Me” and her wonderful cameo of Doris in “Get Shorty” in there. I won’t tell you which ones I’d pull out. Anyway, this was fun. I enjoyed it. Oh, and thank the Lord, Divine Madness made the list. You never see concert movies much on these, and truthfully, I’d probably put it higher. Read More

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Thursday, October 25, 2018

Photo: Shelley Long & Bette Midler – Outrageous Fortune

Photo: Shelley Long & Bette Midler - Outrageous Fortune
Bette Midler and Shelly Long
Directed byArthur Hiller
Produced byTed Field
Robert W. Cort
Written byLeslie Dixon
StarringShelley Long
Bette Midler
Peter Coyote
Robert Prosky
George Carlin
Music byAlan Silvestri
CinematographyDavid M. Walsh
Edited byTom Rolf
Production
company
Touchstone Pictures
Silver Screen Partners II
Interscope Communications
Distributed byBuena Vista Distribution
Release dateJanuary 30, 1987
Running time100 minutes
CountryUnited States
LanguageEnglish
Budget$25 million
Box office$52,864,741
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Friday, November 10, 2017

Alan Silvestri – Outrageous Fortune 1987 [FULL SOUNDTRACK] – Instrumental Audio

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Friday, February 24, 2017

Working out what stars go in what order on a movie poster is quite a job

Den Of Geek
The dark arts of poster billing
By Brendon Connelly
Feb 23, 2017

OUTRAGEOUS FORTUNE, from left: Shelley Long, Bette Midler, 1987, © Buena Vista

OUTRAGEOUS FORTUNE, from left: Shelley Long, Bette Midler, 1987, © Buena Vista

Billing can be important to an actor’s career. Arguably, it’s more important to their ego. Most of all, though, it’s cross-eyed dead crucial to their agent. The order in which actor’s names appear on a poster might be contested as if it’s a matter of life or death. It’s no exaggeration to say that people have been sent to the electric chair with less wrangling or dispute than a handful of movie star names have been splashed onto a poster.

To be ‘top of the bill’ originally meant, literally, that your name is at the top of the bill – i.e. the poster. In variety theatre or music hall terms, this implies that you would take the stage last of all, the big attraction that the audience will wait all night for.

But in motion picture terms, the big star is usually not held back until the final reel. Order of billing on a movie poster reflects something else, such as an actor’s screen time or how central their character is. Even more so, it’s there to show who has the biggest star status.

When a film can be argued to rest on the shoulders of more than one star, billing can be a little more complex. I’ve tried to work out who gets the best deal in this poster for Steel Magnolias:

Assuming that each position is worth 1-6 points, with the highest scores on the left, it adds up like this:

Four star points to Julia Roberts. Five to Daryl Hannah. Six to Dolly Parton. Seven to Olympia Dukakis. 10 each to Shirley MacLaine and Sally Field.

And that’s only if you assume identical weighting for image and name.

While billing disputes are almost as old as cinema, the most important – at least in terms of trendsetting – may well be the arguments surrounding The Towering Inferno.

The Towering Inferno was a huge movie, and it had several huge movie stars in it. Hugest of all were Steve McQueen and Paul Newman, absolute monsters of 1970s Hollywood superstardom. As far as all public knowledge goes, they were paid exactly the same amount for the film, and apparently (though this might just be a great urban myth) given exactly the same amount of lines.

The story goes that McQueen didn’t want Paul Newman to have more lines than he did, and so his role was rewritten significantly to expand it. Nor did he want Newman to get better billing on the poster. That bit sounds like it might have been a simpler request to fulfil, but satisfying the actors and their agents here actually needed a lot of creative thinking in its own right.

The original posters that gave us the notion of billing to start with would list cast members in a vertical stack. The higher on the page your name is, the better your position. At the same time, people reading posters in the English speaking world will read from left to right. It was by combining these two ideas that a poster was created to satisfy the billing needs for The Towering Inferno.

Here’s how it looks. You’ll see Newman’s name is above McQueen’s, but McQueen’s is to the left of Newman’s.

Note how Faye Dunaway gets both right-most and lowest billing. Has Hollywood’s gender divide ever been so geometrically laid out for us?

This staggered billing wasn’t a new idea. In fact, it had apparently been conceived a few years earlier… when McQueen and Newman had almost starred in Butch Cassidy And The Sundance Kid together.

Incidentally, The Towering Inferno was a co-production between 20th Century Fox and Warner Bros., but their billing is much more straightforward – Fox first, Warners second.

The studios got together because one had the rights to a book called The Glass Inferno, the other to the novel The Tower, and rather than race to make similar films (as they would these days), they teamed up, mashed the stories together and set an example of relatively peaceful, co-working good spirits that evidently didn’t trickle all the way down to the actors’ trailers.

I rather like the poster for Boeing Boeing which criss-crosses the billing for Jerry Lewis and Tony Curtis. To my eye, this seems to be more successful than The Towering Inferno in creating some sort of two-way equity – but it’s maybe not so good for the supporting cast, all of whom are relegated to a strip across the bottom.

Say what you want about McQueen – and I’d call him a genuine, bonafide movie star to start off with – but he’s also had a lasting effect on movie posters.

But I don’t think he’s necessarily the best example of an actor’s desire for billing creating chaos in the marketing materials. That honour goes to Shelley Long.

Here’s the title card for Cheers, in which Shelley Long gets the higher, right-most position – the Newman slot, as it were. It’s The Towering Inferno all over again, but in Shelley Long terms this is nothing. This is child’s play.

Here’s a report on the star billing order of Outrageous Fortune from the Sun Sentinel in 1987. I feel quite comfortable just quoting them here. You know. Just in case Shelley Long’s lawyers are reading this.

“Long originally agreed to perform in the film with the understanding that she would receive top billing. But when Disney’s Touchstone Pictures lined up Midler as a potential co-star, Long agreed to a Solomonlike compromise on the credits: The two women split everything 50-50.

Half the prints, publicity material, posters and trailers for the film bill Long first. The other half bill Midler first. Even the invitation to the press screening was printed both ways – upside down and right side up – so that the billing order depended on how you pulled the invitation out of the envelope.”

The LA Times followed up with some responses from Long and Midler’s people:

“Not so, Long’s personal manager Marty Mickelson now pleads: “Bette actually started it by demanding first billing before agreeing to sign for the movie. Shelley wanted so badly to work with Bette that she came up with the evenly split credits.”

The Divine Miss M is apparently tired of the bickering. Through her agent came Bette’s mollifying reply: “It’s true. It’s true. It’s all true. Shelley is fabulous. I’d do the same for her anytime.”

There are two uploads of the film’s 15-second teaser trailer on YouTube. Both favour Bette Midler.

We could argue about this forever, and it’s clear that agents would, but one clear truth of the matter is that Steve McQueen, Better Midler, Paul Newman, Shelley Long and the whole bunch of Magnolias each played their part in getting bums on seats and – more than that – making these movies work. And whatever the print on the poster says, I know which ones take top billing in my heart.

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Saturday, January 30, 2016

TODAY IN HISTORY: Outrageous Fortune was released on Jan 30, 1987

 Outrageous Fortune was released on Jan 30, 1987. How many of you are fans? Do you own the movie? Any favorite lines?

Bette Midler: Bootleg Betty's photo.

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Thursday, June 18, 2015

Bette Midler: Outrageous Fortune – Facts And Trivia

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Bette Midler: Outrageous Fortune – Facts And Trivia

Both Shelley Long and Bette Midler were promised top billing when they signed to do the film. Neither one wanted to give up top billing to the other. So west of the Mississippi River, Long got top billing and Midler got top billing east of the Mississippi.

Bette Midler was three months pregnant when filming began and six months pregnant when it wrapped.

Bette Midler wore an oversized very large orange jumper throughout the movie to disguise the fact that she was pregnant.

One of a mid-late 1980s mini-cycle of movie comedies which starred Bette Midler that were all produced by the new adult Walt Disney subsidiary production house of Touchstone Pictures. The films include Big Business (1988), Ruthless People (1986), Outrageous Fortune (1987) and Down and Out in Beverly Hills (1986).

According to the 80s Movie Rewind, when Bette Midler fell in front of a lorry in the movie, it was not part of the script. Midler had winged it during the shot because she thought it would look good in the film. Shelley Long and the crew were worried about the prat-fall with Long quickly rushing to her aid and pulling Midler to the kerb-side. The scene was kept in the picture.

Reportedly, Bette Midler wanted to do all of her own stunts, which meant falling over and jumping around cliffs during the film’s climax, something which was of concern to the production, for both Midler and her baby’s health and safety.

The movie won a 1988 American Comedy Award for Funniest Actress in a Motion Picture (Leading Role) awarded to actress-comedian Bette Midler.

The picture was successful at the box-office with its world wide receipts totaling just under US $66 million.

The “Outrageous Fortune” title is taken from Act 3, Scene 1, Line 58 of William Shakespeare’s play “Hamlet”. It’s from the start of the famous “To be or not to be” speech which states: “To be, or not to be, that is the question: Whether ’tis nobler in the mind to suffer the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune, or to take arms against a sea of troubles. And by opposing end them”. In the movie, Shelley Long’s character confesses at the beginning of the movie that she someday hopes to play Hamlet. At the end of the film, Long does, with Bette Midler also in the cast.

The picture is considered to be a female version of a male buddy movie. Halliwells said that the film was “a traditional male buddy film that has substituted women” whilst Movies on TV & Videocassette said that the movie was a “variant on the male buddy-buddy movie”. Moreover, Allmovie states that this buddy movie has its “leads essayed by women”.

There was a row between who would get top billing on the film. First billing on the film print at both the start and closing credits went to Shelley Long with Bette Midler being second billed. But many of the movie posters and DVD covers have Midler billed first. Midler had previously starred in Touchstone’s comedy-smash Ruthless People (1986) whereas Long had similarly starred in the hit-comedy Night Shift (1982). Midler ended up being Golden Globe nominated for Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture Comedy/Musical for her role in Outrageous Fortune (1987), suggesting her performance was the more dominant of the two leads, and thus, getting top billed post-theatrical release on the home-video and DVD covers, with Long having the prime billing still on the film print.

The setting of the cliffhanger finale, at the Four Fingers on the Mesa Azul Cliffs, was both a fictional name and fictional location, the place being apparently just a matte painting. Any real life photography associated with the sequence was done in New Mexico.

The route of the cross-country road trip went from Harlem and Manhattan in New York to New Mexico.

The movie’s MacGuffin was a vial of a deadly experimental virus prototype, a fictitious airborne defoliant known as “Floratoxin”.

First of two consecutive movies with a connection to William Shakespeare for actress-comedian Bette Midler. The title of Outrageous Fortune (1987) was derived from a passage in “Hamlet” whilst Midler’s next picture, Big Business (1988), had a plot loosely derived from “The Comedy of Errors”.

Some movie posters for the film featured a long blurb that read: “The CIA is trailing them. The KGB is tracking them. The phone company is tracing them. The police are chasing them. The cowboys are herding them. And the Indians are hunting them. Are they going to fall for all of that?”.

Debut produced screenplay of screen-writer Leslie Dixon. Dixon’s second, Overboard (1987), also began with the same letter “O”, and was also released in the same 1987 year.

The name of the movie that Sandy Brozinsky (Bette Midler) had appeared in was “Ninja Vixens”.

Both lead actresses, Bette Midler and Shelley Long, in one scene, appear in drag and also sport mustaches.

The amount of stolen money in the bag was US $20 million.

The first name of the character of the Russian drama coach, Stanislav Korzenowski, played by Robert Prosky, referenced Konstantin Stanislavski, who was famous for developing the Stanislavski System of Acting.

One of two 1987 movies starring actress-comedian Shelley Long. The other picture was Hello Again (1987).

Principal photography on this picture commenced around April-May 1986 with production completed around August 1986.

Both of the pictures lead stars, Bette Midler and Shelley Long, have both starred in a “Beverly Hills” title movie. Long and Midler both headlined Troop Beverly Hills (1989) and Down and Out in Beverly Hills (1986) respectively.

Intelligence agencies featured in the movie include the CIA and the KGB.

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Tuesday, June 16, 2015

BetteBack January 28, 1990: Bette Midler vs. The Divine Miss M

Madison Wisconsin State Journal
January 28, 1990

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There’s Bette Midler, and then there’s the Divine Miss M, and don’t ever confuse the two.

While Midler knows her alter ego, who has been .known to wear a mermaid costume and travels by wheelchair, is a handful, her colleagues are impressed by how different the two personas are.

In the winter issue of Jupiter, Peter.Coyote, Midler’s co-star in “Outrageous Fortune,” says: “I remember one day when we were rehearsing for the film, Bette walked in, and she looked like this not-so-attractive girl with a lot on her mind. Then something hit her, and she switched on. When that happens, she grows about 12 feet, her breasts are bigger, and her smile warms everything up.

Clark Kent runs into a phone booth to become Superman, but Bette runs into a little secret place in her mind and comes out another being.”

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  • Read More

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    Thursday, May 7, 2015

    Reese Witherspoon Acknowledges Using Outrageous Fortune As Inspiration For Movie ‘Hot Pursuit’

    USA Today
    Reese, Sofia buddy up for ‘Hot Pursuit’
    May 7, 2015

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    BEVERLY HILLS — They play foes in Hot Pursuit, but it only takes a quick scan of Instagram to see that Reese Witherspoon and Sofia Vergara have a love affair going on.

    There they are mugging at the Met Gala, hilariously covering Taylor Swift songs via the app Dubsmash and feeding each other espresso and doughnuts.

    On set, “we had a great time,” says Vergara, 42. “I didn’t feel like it was anything forced. Reese is easy to be funny with.”

    But in Hot Pursuit (opening Friday), they’re running in opposite directions. Witherspoon plays the bumbling, no-nonsense Officer Rose Cooper, trying her best to haul in Daniella Riva, the glamorous widow of a whistleblower set to bring down a massive drug operation.

    “It feels very fresh, this movie,” says Witherspoon, 39, who pulled inspiration from buddy comedy silver-screen pairings such as Shelley Long and Bette Midler in 1987’s Outrageous Fortune. “It’s a new idea.”

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    They shot the movie last summer, while Vergara was on hiatus from Modern Family. (Ask Vergara to dream-cast a Witherspoon cameo on her hit TV show, and she pictures her as Manny’s teacher or “an uptight friend of Claire’s.”)

    “We were developing this movie even while we were shooting Wild,” says Witherspoon, whose husband, Jim Toth, is Vergara’s agent. “I was like, ‘Honey, can I have a meeting with Sofia Vergara? I think I should make a movie with her. She’s really funny.’ ”

    Witherspoon briefly ended up in the ER after a tumultuous fight scene. “I pushed her a little too hard,” Vergara acknowledges with a smile.

    Although Witherspoon insists she was back at work the next day, “I had a hard time standing up, and I went to the doctor and they were like, ‘Is somebody pushing you around?’ ” says Witherspoon. “I was like, ‘Yeah, Sofia Vergara.’ ”

    Meanwhile, both are building empires as their side pursuits. Vergara has endorsements including Cover Girl, Head & Shoulders and Diet Pepsi, and lines at Kmart and Kay Jewelers. Witherspoon has an active production company, Pacific Standard, and just launched a Southern-inspired e-commerce site, Draper James. “Southern women are so fashionable,” says Witherspoon. “But no one sort of caters to them.”

    “Everything I put my name (on), I need to control everything from design to materials,” says Vergara, who became engaged to Joe Manganiello in December. “My perfume took one year to find what I wanted.”

    Both stars are hoping moms and daughters celebrate Mother’s Day with a dose of Hot Pursuit. Witherspoon’s ultimate Mother’s Day?

    “I love it when my kids just make me a card,” says the mom to look-alike daughter Ava, 15, Deacon, 11 (who waits for Mom around the corner today) and Tennessee, 2. “I tell them they have to be nice to me all day. No bickering!”

    Reese Witherspoon: Sofia Vergara Was “Really Nervous” For Their Hot Pursuit Makeout Sesh
    It’s Reese Witherspoon vs. Sofia Vergara at the ‘Hot Pursuit’ Red Carpet Premiere
    Watch Reese Witherspoon & Sofia Vergara Lip Sync ‘Party In The USA’
    Reese Witherspoon and Sofia Vergara Heat Up the 2015 ACMs Red Carpet!

    Photos: ‘Hot Pursuit’ with Sofia Vergara and Reese Witherspoon Read More

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    Wednesday, December 24, 2014

    BetteBack January 7, 1988: Bette Gets Nominated For A Golden Globe 1988

    Joplin Globe
    January 7, 1988

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    BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. (AP) A pair of comedies, “Broadcast News” and “Moonstruck,” and a dramatic epic, “The Last Emperor,” were honored this week with five 1988 Golden Globe nominations each from the Hollywood Foreign Press Association.

    However, the late John Huston’s last film, “The Dead,” named best picture of 1987 by the National Society of Film Critics, received no nominations in the awards race, often a harbinger of the Oscars.

    Also unexpected was the best drama nomination for “La Bamba,” the film about the short life of 1950s rocker Ritchie Valens.

    Three movies captured four nominations each — “Cry Freedom,” the story of black South African activist Steven Biko and white journalist Donald Woods; “Dirty Dancing,” about a girl’s sexual awakening dunng a summer in the Catskills; and “Fatal Attraction,” the saga of a scorned woman who stalks the man who ditched her.

    “Broadcast News,” set amid the pressures of a television newsroom, finds William Hurt and Albert Brooks vying for the attention of Holly Hunter.

    “Moonstruck” leaves Cher in the shadow of a full moon that changes her life as a widow and influences her struggles with family, fidelity and the foibles of the human heart.

    “The Last Emperor” chronicles the history of Pu Yi, proclaimed emperor of China in 1908 when he just 3 years old. He is powerless at the age of 6, banished in 1924 and named puppet ruler of invaded Manchuria in 1931. After a decade of indoctrination in Red China, Yi, played by John Lone, ends his life as a gardener in Beijing.

    The Golden Globes, which also recognize television achievement will be handed out on Jan. 23 at the Beverly Hilton.

    The association’s annual Cecil B. DeMille Award will be presented to Clint Eastwood for his outstanding contribution to the entertainment industry.

    Unlike the Academy Awards, the Golden Globes honor dramas separately.

    The nominations for the 45th awards include:

    Motion Picture, Drama — “Cry Freedom,” “Empire of the Sun,” “Fatal Attraction,” “La Bamba,” “The Last Emperor” and “Nuts.”

    Motion Picture, Comedy-Musical “Baby Boom,” “Broadcast News,” “Dirty Dancing,” “Hope and Glory” and “Moonstruck.”

    Actor, Drama — Michael Douglas, “Wall Street”; John Lone, “The Last Emperor”; Jack Nicholson, “Ironweed”; Nick Nolte, “Weeds”; and Denzel Washington, “Cry Freedom.”

    Actress, Drama — Glenn Close, “Fatal Attraction”; Faye Dunaway, “Barfly”; Sally Kirkland, “Anna”; Rachel Levin, “Gaby: A True Story”; and Barbra Streisand, “Nuts.”

    Actor, Comedy-Musical — Nicolas Cage, “Moonstruck”; Danny DeVito, “Throw Momma From The Train”; William Hurt, Broadcast News”; Steve Martin, “Roxanne”; Patrick Swayze, “Dirty Dancing”; and Robin Williams, “Good Morning
    Vietnam.”

    Actress, Comedy-Musical Cher, “Moonstruck”; Jennifer Grey, “Dirty Dancing”; Holly Hunter, “Broadcast News”; Diane Keaton, “Baby Boom”; and Bette Midler, “Outrageous Fortune.”

    Supporting Actor — Sean Connery, “The Untouchables”; Richard Dreyfuss, “Nuts”; Lee Ermey, “Full Metal Jacket”; Morgan Freeman, “Street Smart”; and Rob Lowe, “Square Dance.”

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    Friday, November 28, 2014

    Outrageous Fortune Tropes And Idioms

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    Bette Midler and Shelley Long star in this female buddy picture from 1987. Long plays Lauren Ames, an actress whose ambition far outweighs her success despite her many years of taking classes; Midler plays Sandy Brozinsky, a fast-talking, foul-mouthed waitress from the wrong side of the tracks who horns her way into Lauren’s exclusive drama class on a lark. Unbeknown to each other, Sandy and Lauren are both seeing the same impossibly perfect man, Michael Santers (Peter Coyote). When Michael inexplicably fakes his death, Sandy and Lauren wind up joining forces to track him down. A wacky, cross-country caper ensues, and both women discover that there’s a lot more to the man they love—not to mention their suspiciously homicidal Russian acting coach—than they ever imagined.

    Tropes:
    ’80s Hair: Bette Midler’s character. It’s not teased or anything, but it is as wide as her shoulder-padded shoulders.
    Adults Dressed as Children: Lauren and Sandy sneak into a whorehouse thinking they’re convincingly disguised as men; the madame takes them for thirteen-year-old boys. Our intrepid heroines run with it.
    Madame: Does your daddy know you’re here?
    Lauren (in cowboy accent): Hell, yes, he told us where to come! Come, git it?
    Aww, Look! They Really Do Love Each Other: Sandy is visibly shaken when she believes Lauren has been shot dead.
    Badass Adorable: Lauren develops into this over the course of the film.
    Bad Bad Acting: Practiced by many of Stan’s students, as he enjoys pointing out. Even Lauren cringes at the spectacle of one particular student’s immensely hammy non-dialogue “performance” of a moment from Oedipus The King.
    Beware the Quiet Ones: Lauren, fed up with the mystery, kicks open a crackhouse door, waves a toy gun around (back in a day when toy guns looked real), and starts impersonating an angry cop with a screw loose. Even Sandy is shocked.
    Briefcase Full of Money: Or, rather, a cute, ducky-emblazoned lunchbox full of money.
    Butt Monkey: Frank. Also, anyone who takes Stanislav Korzenowsky’s acting class.
    Calling Your Orgasms: Michael’s telltale chant of, “Oh God. Oh God. Ohhh God. Ohhhgod—OHHHGOD!!!”
    The Casanova: Michael
    Cat Fight: Lauren and Sandy duke it out in the morgue.
    Cheap Costume: The ladies are forced to improvise quite frequently.
    Chekhov’s Armory: The film is made of this. The climax, in fact, centers around pretty much everything we saw Lauren doing in her acting and ballet classes at the very beginning. (Also, Sandy’s stolen Christmas tree ornament comes in pretty handy.)
    Cluster F-Bomb: Sandy sure loves ’em—which Lauren lampshades. But ironically, the most blatant example in the film is Lauren doing her “Crazy / Badass Cop” impression.
    Cold War
    Comically Missing the Point: Lauren holds a gun to Stan after he tries to kill her, then proceeds to berate him for making a mockery of the New York acting community. Sandy has to rush over to get her to snap out of it….
    Daddy’s Girl: Lauren is this, as we see when she tries to borrow money for Korzenowsky’s class from her parents. Her mother won’t let her in the door; her father throws her a check from the window of their high-rise.
    Deadpan Snarker: Sandy, all the freaking time. She’s a bit of a Snark Knight.
    Stan is quite snarky, himself.
    Lauren is a bit of a Lady Snarker.
    Defector from Commie Land: Stan’s way of avoiding repercussions back in Mother Russia.

    He is even able to bargain for perks, including a condo on the Potomac and Redskins season tickets.
    Disguised in Drag
    Drama Queen: Lauren can certainly be this way.
    Erotic Eating: Lauren (with sexy Russian Bond Girl voice) + Michael + a chicken leg.
    Expy: Lauren is in many ways a “clone” of Diane Chambers, except that she’s also great at ballet. (And Lauren’s willing to curse, if the situation calls for it.) Especially notable in that Shelley Long tends to try and downplay any Diane-like “quirks” when playing other characters—but in this film, she at times seems to be cranking it Up to Eleven.
    Fake Nationality: In-Universe and out: Robert Prosky is an American playing a Russian who, at one point, disguises himself as an American.
    Stan (removing his mask): So. Some of us who teach can also do.
    Friend to All Children: Implied, with Lauren. She is clearly very touched when Michael tells her he’s trying to find the perfect Halloween costume, to help out a kid who’s unable to find acceptance among his classmates. Later, she makes a point to tell Sandy to let her talk to the kid holding them at gunpoint—presumably because she’s better with children.
    Funny Background Event: When Sandy is talking to her boyfriend in the phone company over the phone, Lauren paces impatiently behind her—and can be seen briefly mockingly mimicking Sandy’s boisterousness.
    Gag Penis / Bigger Is Better in Bed: Michael’s defining physical characteristic, which is how Lauren and Sandy know the burned corpse at the morgue isn’t him.
    Sandy: Michael was not a guy other guys would’ve made fun of in the locker room, okay?
    Good People Have Good Sex: Lauren sports a radiant glow and a BIG smile after her night with Michael, which Sandy makes sure to comment on. Michael turns out to be a bad guy, though.
    Groin Attack: Threatened by Sandy (“I’ll shoot it off, Stan”).
    Lauren includes this threat in her Badass Cop impression when she and Sandy interrogate the drug dealers.
    Gratuitous Russian
    Instant Seduction: The first time Lauren meets Michael, he’s a customer in the costume shop where she works. She’s moved by his telling her he’s a teacher trying to find the perfect costume for one of his students who’s trying hard to fit in. She offers to help him make one. The very next scene shows the two of them in bed, Michael “apologizing” for the quick turn of events, explaining that “I just…had to kiss you.” Lauren, radiant with afterglow, is charmed even more by this.
    The Lad-ette: Sandy’s not above talkin’ trash and often acting pretty “macho” with the best of them, though she still cares about her physical appearance in the “feminine” fashion, among other things.
    Lampshade Hanging: When our gals finally manage to reach one of their destinations after an especially exhausting ordeal, a bunch of guys drive by, hooting and whistling and otherwise calling out to them in Hello, Nurse! fashion. Lauren can’t resist:
    Lauren: Now, why do they do that? Has there ever been one woman in the history of the world who actually said—(with Coy, Girlish Flirt Pose) “Yes, fellas, please—take me, now!”?
    Sandy: (Wimpering) For a bed and a bath, I…I’d consider it—
    Lauren: Bite your tongue….
    Literary Allusion Title: Hamlet, in case you don’t recognize the quote….
    Lovely Angels: Lauren and Sandy find themselves becoming this, each discovering their Hidden Badass over the course of the film.
    Ms. Fanservice: Lauren has a few moments of this. In addition to her nights with Michael, the scene in Stan’s waiting room has her dressed in an outfit that has a see-through blouse covering Absolute Cleavage that goes down to her waist.
    It gets better. Shortly before Sandy shows up, Lauren engages in some breathing exercises that quickly sound like she’s partaking in something else entirely….
    Mugged for Disguise: Lauren and Sandy appropriate Frank’s clothes. (At least they’re nice enough to leave him their skirts and blouses.)
    The Ophelia: Well, in a literal way: Sandy plays Ophelia in the production of Hamlet at the end.
    The Power of Acting: It turns out that Lauren’s many years of studying the theater pay off in tracking down Michael and foiling the bad guys.
    Ransacked Room: The film plays this straight, then spoofs it. First, the two women go to Lauren’s apartment while it’s being ransacked. After a daring escape, they head to Sandy’s place to find it a complete mess as well. Lauren cries, “Oh, no, they’ve been here!” and tries to run, but Sandy grabs her and says, “Nobody’s been here. This is normal.”
    Red Oni, Blue Oni: Sandy is red, and Lauren is blue.
    Rogue Agent: What Michael turns out to be.
    Scary Black Man: Lauren and Sandy’s cab driver.
    Sdrawkcab Name: Sort of. Stan’s name is almost the reverse of real-life actor Constantin Stanislavsky.
    Serious Business: Lauren does not appreciate any insults to the honor of the theater—to the point where we hear her arguing with Sandy over the value of Hamlet— as the credits start rolling!
    Shakespearean Actors: What Lauren aspires to be. Her ambition is to play Hamlet, which she finally accomplishes at the end of the film.
    Shout-Out: Sandy once sarcastically calls out to Lauren as “Lady Di”. Shelley Long, of course, is most famous for playing Diane Chambers of Cheers.
    A retroactive example: When Sandy gives a brief summary of the situation to Frank, he looks at her in bewilderment and asks, “The ’60s were good to you, weren’t they?” This line would be recycled for Cars, where an inverted version would be asked of George Carlin’s character, Fillmore….
    Spirited Young Lady: Lauren, who is ladylike and feminine Up to Eleven, but is quite skilled at fencing and is not afraid to actually stab her match opponent in the beginning of the film.
    Spoiled Sweet: Lauren. To her credit, she’s kind of aware of it, as she explains to Sandy when they argue over who should go over to the super-intimidating cab driver….
    Stoners Are Funny: Especially when they’re played by George Carlin.
    Teeny Weenie: The unfortunate fellow at the morgue, falsely identified as Michael, as Sandy tries to explain to the cops:
    Lauren: I think he’s got the big picture now—
    Sandy: Oh, I don’t think he does! (To cop) This guy in the morgue…whoever he is…he’s got a… (Wicked grin) Does the phrase “needle-dick”—”the bugfucker”—mean anything to you?
    The Eighties: Check out those opening credits.
    Tomboy and Girly Girl: Played with. Downplayed for Sandy, who is technically more of The Lad-ette, but Lauren most definitely qualifies as a Girly Girl.
    Universal Poison: What Michael stole. Specifically, a green toxin that will destroy all vegetation around the world with just a few drops.
    Vanity Is Feminine: At one point, the gals stop right what they’re doing to check their makeup, and then spend the next moment or two remarking on how they look and whether or not their hair colors are natural.
    We Need a Distraction: How about emptying an entire lunchbox filled with money into a crowd of waiting airline passengers?
    Wham Line: “Nine years of ballet, asshole!”
    White Guilt: Lauren gets Tongue Tied when she tries to say “Caucasian”, while trying to describe Michael to the black cab driver—finally settling for nervously dropping race entirely (and announcing it). She ends up panicking over possibly digging herself deeper…and later gets very nervous over the fact that the man soon drives her and Sandy deep into Harlem. Sandy can’t resist ribbing her about it.
    You Need to Get Laid: Sandy’s reply when Lauren explodes at her in their first encounter.

    Lauren’s shocked silence implies it hits VERY close to home.

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