- Movie Rating -

Mr. Mom (1983)

| July 22, 1983

I don’t know anything at all about the production of this movie, but I have reason to think that at some point it may have been conceived as a sitcom.  The premise, the story, the characters, heck even the title seems to lend itself to the situation comedy format.

Here we have a modern family situation: Dad (Michael Keaton) is an executive at Ford and has been laid off and, for whatever reason, can’t seem to find work.  Mom (Teri Garr) has been a stay-at-home mother and decides that she can go out and work – she gets a job all-too-easily with an advertising agency because she convinces the company that her experience is that she’s been at the front-lines as one of their consumers.  See, right there you have a pilot.

Then the second episode could be the father’s common misunderstanding of how household appliances work.  He doesn’t know how to work the blender, the microwave, the washer and dryer.  He doesn’t know how to iron and he doesn’t know how to cook.  He is so far removed from the household duties that he isn’t even aware of the elder vacuum cleaner nicknamed ‘Jaws’.

Episode #3: He has to deal with all of the repair people who inexplicably descend upon his house all at the same time – TV repair, the plumber, the exterminator.

Episode #4: The family has to go to Mom’s boss’ house for a company picnic and the house turns out to be one of those obscene F-U mansions with all the amenities.

Episode #5: Mom has to go out of town accompanied by the boss (Martin Mull) who immediately makes a pass at her and she decks him.

Episode #6: Mom is given the stress of coming up with a new ad campaign for tuna when the hardbound head of the ad agency complains that sales are plummeting.

Episode #7: One of the kids is growing up and has to learn how to give up his security blanket.

Episode #8: A steady diet of soap operas causes Dad to hallucinate that his household drama is becoming a chapter of The Young and the Restless.

This movie isn’t written, it’s inevitable.  You could chop all of these elements down into 21-minute bits and it wouldn’t offend or challenge your senses at all.  If you have ever spent time in the company of the sitcom before, you already know what is going to happen.  It’s a sweet comfort food with everything that you expect and little else.

About the Author:

Jerry Roberts is a film critic and operator of two websites, Armchair Cinema and Armchair Oscars.
(1983) View IMDB Filed in: Comedy