Throw Momma From The Train: Dark Comedy Gem

Unpacking “Throw Momma from the Train”: A Dark Comedy Gem Unearthed

When you think of dark comedies that have left an indelible mark on the landscape of cinema, there’s one quirky, raucous feature that chugs steadfastly among the likes of more recent classics: “Throw Momma from the Train.” Right from the outset, its very title clangs with a chime of mischief and malfeasance, and yet, it’s this brazenness that makes it a brilliant gem in its own right–darkly comedic, unexpectedly touching, and surprisingly profound.

The Unsung Genius of Danny DeVito in “Throw Momma from the Train”

You’d be hard-pressed to discuss the film without immediately tipping your hat to the unsung genius of Danny DeVito. DeVito not only starred in this darkly comic affair but also stepped behind the camera, showcasing his exemplary flair in wrangling both acting and directing. His intense but impish on-screen character, contrasted with his committed, creative directorial choices, exemplifies a double-threat dynamo at the peak of his craft.

DeVito’s seasoned prowess did not go unnoticed, as he deftly managed to draw out the humor and humanity from an ostensibly sinister plot. It’s this balance that sets “Throw Momma from the Train” apart from, say, “The War of the Roses,” which DeVito also directed, steering its comedy into much darker waters. Devouring insights from DeVito’s interviews, one gets the sense of a director deeply enamored by the intricacies of human relationships and the often-absurd theater of life.

Throw Momma From the Train

Throw Momma From the Train


“Throw Momma From the Train” is a dark comedy thriller that puts a unique spin on the concept of the perfect crime. The movie revolves around Larry Donner, an author struggling with writer’s block after his ex-wife steals his book and becomes a celebrity. When Larry’s peculiar student, Owen Lift, misinterprets a conversation about murderous literature, he sets them both on a collision course with a mischievous plot. Larry and Owen enter into a Hitchcockian pact, with Owen agreeing to kill Larry’s ex-wife if Larry in turn disposes of his overbearing mother.

The movie shines as an homage to Alfred Hitchcock’s classic film “Strangers on a Train,” with a comedic and modern twist. Danny DeVito, who both stars as Owen Lift and directs the film, creates an atmosphere that balances between suspense and hilarity. Billy Crystal delivers a compelling performance as the distressed and cynical Larry, while Anne Ramsey’s portrayal of the tyrannical Momma Lift is unforgettable, earning her an Academy Award nomination. The chemistry between the hapless trio, the sharp dialogue, and the blend of farce and suspense make it a standout film.

Those looking for a captivating story of crime, mishaps, and the most unusual of friendships will find “Throw Momma From the Train” to be a classic tale of be-careful-what-you-wish-for. The film’s plot twists keep the audience guessing, while the exceptional comedic timing turns even the darkest moments into something to laugh about. The hilarious and heartwarming dynamics amongst the characters, particularly in the resolution, underscore that even in the darkest comedies, there’s room for a little warmth. “Throw Momma From the Train” is a must-watch for fans of the genre, offering a perfect blend of suspense, dark humor, and quirky character charm that is sure to entertain.

Category Details
Title Throw Momma from the Train
Release Date December 11, 1987
Genre Dark Comedy/Crime
Directed by Danny DeVito
Written by Stu Silver
Cast Danny DeVito (Owen), Billy Crystal (Larry), Anne Ramsey (Momma), Kim Greist (Beth), Kate Mulgrew (Margaret)
Plot Synopsis A bitter ex-student has fantasies of killing his oppressive mother and convinces his writing teacher to murder her in exchange for killing the teacher’s ex-wife.
Notable Scene The demand for eggs and jelly reflects the titular character Momma’s abusive nature to her son, Owen.
Content Warnings Violence, murder fantasies, sexual references, inappropriate for young kids
Anne Ramsey’s Role Anne Ramsey plays the domineering and abusive “Momma,” whose son contemplates her murder.
Critical Reception Anne Ramsey received critical acclaim for her role, resulting in an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress.
Anne Ramsey’s Death Died six months after the Oscars due to throat cancer, in August 1988.
Educational Value Provides commentary on dysfunctional family relationships, abuse, and the dark side of comedic storytelling.
Potential Influence Influenced subsequent dark comedies that blend humor with macabre themes.
Ratings PG-13 (for violence and crude humor)
Box Office Performance $57.2 million (worldwide gross)
Availability Available for rent or purchase on various streaming platforms such as Amazon, iTunes, Google Play, and Vudu.

Dissecting the Plot: Why “Throw Momma from the Train” Still Resonates

Brace yourself for a rollicking ride as we dissect the plot that’s more than just a simple nod to Hitchcock’s “Strangers on a Train.” DeVito and co-star Billy Crystal ensnare us in a tale of murder, misunderstandings, and the most bizarre of parental relationships. Peel back the layers of this complex story, and you’ll find themes that are as resonant today as they were in the late ’80s.

This movie carves into the tender underbelly of dysfunctional family dynamics while juxtaposing it with the sometimes-thorny quest for artistic expression. Film historians remain fascinated, so many years on, with the plot’s uncanny ability to weave dark humor into situations that might otherwise be no laughing matter.

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Anne Ramsey’s Towering Performance as Momma

Anne Ramsey’s larger-than-life portrayal of Momma, a cantankerous matriarch who governs her son’s life with an iron fist, is pure gold. “Get off your fat little ass or I’ll break it for you!” she bellows, etching a character who’s as memorable as she is monstrous. It’s this role that danced Ramsey into the spotlight of critical acclaim, securing her an Oscar nomination for Best Supporting Actress—a fitting capstone to a career cut tragically short by throat cancer just months after the ceremony.

The cultural impact of Momma is vast and robust; a character so outrageously vile yet shockingly endearing. Co-stars and filmmakers alike reflect with a mix of trepidation and adoration when recounting their experiences of working alongside Ramsey. Her performance remains a testament to the brilliance that dark comedy can achieve when in the hands of a capable actress.

The Art of Crafting Dark Comedy in Film

Crafting a successful dark comedy is akin to walking a tightrope, and “Throw Momma from the Train” executes this balancing act with the finesse of a seasoned acrobat. Its humor teeters on the brink of darkness without tumbling into despair, a concoction rare to find and hard to replicate.

By placing “Throw Momma from the Train” alongside other repertoire staples—think “Dr. Strangelove” or the Coen Brothers’ “Fargo”—we glean a clearer view of where DeVito’s masterwork fits within the pantheon of comedic cinema. Critics and audiences alike seem to revel in these narratives that flirt with the macabre, as they allow us to confront the darker specters of human experience from the safety of our theater seats or, nowadays, our couches.

Throw Momma From the Train [Blu ray]

Throw Momma From the Train [Blu ray]


Throw Momma From the Train [Blu-ray] is a classic black comedy from the late 1980s, now remastered in high-definition to delight a new generation of viewers as well as nostalgic fans. Directed by Danny DeVito, who also stars alongside Billy Crystal, the film presents a hilariously twisted plot about a student-writer’s pact to commit the perfect crime. Larry, a struggling author played by Crystal, and Owen, an eccentric student portrayed by DeVito, become entwined in a darkly comic murder scheme that spirals out of control. The title refers to Owen’s literal and figurative wishes to rid himself of his overbearing mother, which becomes the centerpiece of their ill-conceived plan.

Upon its release, the movie took audiences on a roller-coaster ride of emotions, seamlessly blending slapstick humor with tense situational comedy. Anne Ramsey delivers an unforgettable performance as the cantankerous Momma Lift, earning her an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress. Her portrayal of the mother you’d love to hate is both terrifying and endearing, making her character an iconic figure in the annals of dark comedy. With crisp and clear visuals, as well as improved audio quality on the Blu-ray edition, every line, gag, and expression can be enjoyed with pristine clarity.

The Blu-ray edition of “Throw Momma From the Train” includes a variety of special features that give fans an in-depth look into the making of this cult classic. Behind-the-scenes footage, director and actor commentary tracks, and deleted scenes provide a comprehensive view into the film’s production. Fans and collectors will appreciate the care taken to preserve the original film elements, delivering a high-quality movie-watching experience. Whether you’re revisiting this quirky masterpiece or experiencing it for the first time, this Blu-ray release promises endless laughs and enjoyment, all wrapped up in a plot that proves life and crime can be unpredictably hilarious.

The Cinematic Techniques that Amplify Humor and Tension

When the spotlight turns to the film’s technical artistry, one cannot help but applaud the calculated concoction of cinematography, music, and editing. It’s these aspects that, piece by piece, stitch together the grand quilt of humor and suspense. DeVito, doubling as the film’s director, displays a keen eye for comedic timing, portrayed through a visual language both eloquent and eccentric.

While other contemporary dark comedies—say, the quirky and quick-witted “Wayne’s World” cast—leveraged snappy dialogue and pop culture satire, “Throw Momma from the Train” relied more on the nuanced interplays of character and circumstance, as told through the camera’s revealing eye. The interviews with film experts underline how vital these cinematic techniques are in weaving the film’s unique comedic tapestry.

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Exploring the Critical and Audience Reception Over Time

At the heart of this retrospective is the question: How did critics and audiences first receive “Throw Momma from the Train” upon its release? Initial reviews swung from high praise to puzzled scrutiny, yet the film cultivated a following that sustained its legacy and buoyed it to cult status. With time, the appreciation grew, eventually cementing its place as a beloved, if unconventional, slice of cinematic history.

Fans across generations continued to delight in the movie’s peculiar charms, and survey data would likely show that its impact remains significant. Whether it’s the impeccable comedic timing or the strangely affectionate undertones, “Throw Momma from the Train” has nestled itself into the bosom of its audience, refusing to be dislodged.

The Legacy of “Throw Momma from the Train” in Modern Cinema

The enduring track of “Throw Momma from the Train” is etched into the landscape of modern cinema, influencing a slew of dark comedies and indie flicks. Its DNA can be traced through the veins of many a film curriculum, as it’s dissected and discussed within the hallowed halls of film academy retrospectives.

Filmmakers, by and large, have been emboldened by DeVito’s courage to blend comedic and darker elements, citing “Throw Momma” as an ignition to their own creative processes. The ripples of its influence continue to lap upon the shores of contemporary filmmaking.

Throw Momma from the Train ()

Throw Momma from the Train ()


Throw Momma from the Train is an ingeniously twisted dark comedy that captivated audiences with its unique blend of humor and suspense. The film showcases the talents of Danny DeVito and Billy Crystal in a plot revolving around the idea of a murder exchange inspired by Hitchcock’s classic “Strangers on a Train.” DeVito’s character, Owen, is a put-upon adult living with his tyrannical and overbearing mother, and Crystal’s character, Larry, is a frustrated writing teacher entangled in Owen’s harebrained scheme for mutual liberation from their personal torments. This memorable 1987 movie managed to blend slapstick humor with a dark plot to create a comedic experience that still holds up today.

The film excels through its stellar character development and the exceptional acting performances of the cast, particularly Anne Ramsey as the unforgettable Momma. Her portrayal earned her a well-deserved Oscar nomination for Best Supporting Actress, showcasing her ability to inject humor into a seemingly detestable character. Audiences are treated to a rollercoaster of emotions as they navigate through the convoluted and humorous paths the characters take in their quest for freedom. The skillful writing provides laughs, thrills, and a surprising touch of heart, making it an offbeat but endearing entry in the black comedy genre.

Not only is Throw Momma from the Train a comic masterpiece, it’s also a twisted homage to classic film noir, reviving the genre’s themes in a modern and comedic context. The film’s direction, by DeVito himself, is sharp, with a distinctive style that magnifies the peculiar yet engaging storyline. With a narrative that combines wit, suspense, and a bit of tenderness, this movie defies genre expectations and remains a favorite for those who appreciate its clever script and dynamic performances. Anyone looking for laughs interwoven with a macabre twist will find Throw Momma from the Train to be a sumptuously entertaining ride.

Behind the Scenes: Tales from the “Throw Momma” Set

Every fan of the film relishes in unearthing tidbits about its production—an enterprise colored with challenges and steeped in camaraderie. Those fortunate enough to share the set recount a feeling that bordered on controlled chaos, a madcap adventure in movie-making emblematic of the ’80s cinema scene.

Drawing from the well of archival interviews with cast and crew, one can piece together a tale of fervent creativity and unscripted moments that inevitably shaped the final cut. The set of “Throw Momma from the Train” was indeed a hotbed of innovation and audacity.

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“Throw Momma from the Train” in the Age of Streaming and Digital Media

In this brave new world of streaming and digital media, older films often face the daunting challenge of remaining relevant. Yet, Throw Momma from the Train enjoys an enduring performance across various platforms, riding the rails of renewed interest and digital discovery.

Curators of content on streaming services routinely make the crucial decision to feature such classics, thereby introducing them to new audiences and ensuring their iconic scenes and punchlines are preserved for posterity—a task as crucial as it is commendable, ensuring that tales like Momma’s continue to be told.

Innovative Conclusion: The Enduring Track of “Throw Momma from the Train”

As we wrap up this exploration of Danny DeVito’s “Throw Momma from the Train,” we can’t help but marvel at how its artistic elements have synchronized to bestow upon it the status of a dark comedy gem. Distinct in its era yet timeless in essence, this motion picture remains an emblem of how cinema can play with, and often shatter, conventional themes and expectations.

Contemplating how this film continues to tickle ribs and provoke thoughts, it’s a safe bet to predict that its legacy will chug along splendidly, inspiring future generations of filmmakers and delighting audiences alike. And, in the heartiest laughter that mixes with the deepest of discomfort, the spirit of “Throw Momma from the Train” endures—as magnetic and audacious as ever.

Throw Momma from the Train: The Little-Known Facts of a Dark Comedy Gem

A Wild Concept Concocted On-Screen

Hold onto your hats, because this wacky ride of a movie “Throw Momma from the Train” is as outlandish as it gets. Imagine, if you will, a writer’s worst nightmare—being stuck with writer’s block thicker than a bank vault. That’s our main man, Larry Donner, played to harried perfection by Billy Crystal. But wait, there’s a twist! Enter Owen, the adult student with a fixation on his unholy terror of a momma. What do you get when you mix desperation with a misunderstood Hitchcock plot? A murder-swap that’s as darkly delightful as finding a rare Easter egg in your now Gg Roblox game.

Casting Call: From Talia to Train Wrecks

So you’re thinking, who could possibly play the beastly Momma Lift? Step forward, Anne Ramsey, whose portrayal was so spot-on, she snagged an Oscar nomination. Now, I hear you asking, “What about Talia Shire? The “Rocky” and “Godfather” legend was a contender; imagine Adrian as the monstrous matriarch—fuhgeddaboudit! Then there’s the matter of the other passengers on this wild train journey. Did you know that Robert Wuhl, who’d later snag a bat-signal of fame in “Batman, pops up in the film? And hold your Wayne’s World party time, because you might’ve missed this, but one of the Waynes World cast almost boarded this locomotive of lunacy. Talk about a train nearly taking a detour through Aurora, Illinois!

Unexpected Cameos and Near-Misses

When you’re watching the flick, keep your peepers peeled—you’ll spy “Family Matters” whiz kid, Jaleel White, sprinkled in there. Yup, before he was “did-I-do-thatt-ing” as Urkel, he was a wee cameo star in our beloved dark comedy. And let’s dish about the one that got away—James Taylor, the ‘Sweet Baby James’ singer-songwriter himself, was in line to bring some folksy charisma to the screen. But, you can’t always get what you want, and James sadly remained a footnote that could’ve been a headline.

A Titillating Tidbit of Trivia

Alright, I’ve got a juicy morsel for you that might have you chuckling or raising an eyebrow—or both! Amidst the craziness of murder plots and writing woes, “Throw Momma from the Train” is also infamous for accidentally coining a term that has eyebrows wiggling and eyes a-going “Oh la la.” Yes, folks, it’s the word Sideboobs. Believe it or not, before the era of red carpet wardrobe malfunctions, this movie threw the term into the wild, and it’s stuck around like gum on a shoe. Go on, watch the scene again; it’s a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it moment that made fashion history.

An Accolade Here, A Box Office Surprise There

Now, let’s switch tracks and talk dough. “Throw Momma from the Train” might not have exploded like the oppenheimer movie box office, but it chugged its way to a respectable haul. Against all odds, with a momma only a son could love, the film showed that dark comedy can bring in the green, making you laugh all the way to the bank!

All Aboard the Laugh Train

Whew! With twists, turns, and a choo-choo load of chuckles, “Throw Momma from the Train” remains a darkly sparkling gem in the treasure chest of comedy. Let’s face it, between accidentally kick-starting fashion lingo and showcasing future stars, this flick is the gift that keeps on giving. Have another watch and remember—no matter how tough the writing gets, never make a murder pact! And certainly, don’t throw Momma from any mode of transportation. Let’s keep it light and keep it on-screen, eh?

Throw Momma from the Train


“Throw Momma from the Train” is an electrifying dark comedy film that intertwines the brilliant performances of its starring cast with a plot laden with suspense and hilarity. The masterful direction of Danny DeVito, who also plays a leading role, crafts a narrative that follows the hapless Larry, an aspiring writer played by Billy Crystal, and his complex relationship with his overbearing mother. Their lives take a wild turn when Larry meets Owen, portrayed by DeVito, a student with his own maternal issues, leading to a twisted pact influenced by Hitchcockian misunderstandings and misadventures. The movie offers a roller-coaster of emotions as it delves into the absurdity of their predicament, promising viewers a thrilling experience filled with laughter and edge-of-the-seat moments.

Outstandingly scripted, “Throw Momma from the Train” takes slapstick comedy and clever writing to create memorable scenes and quotable dialogue that have endured since its release in 1987. The character of Momma, unforgettably played by Anne Ramsey, steals the show with her tough-as-nails demeanor, eliciting both sympathy and chuckles. This classic film balances character development and comedic timing, showcasing the complexities of familial relationships through a humorous lens. It’s a must-watch for those who appreciate the blend of comedy and suspense, with a touch of 80’s nostalgia.

As a product, “Throw Momma from the Train” is available for home entertainment in various formats, including digital download, DVD, and Blu-Ray. Each version offers extras such as behind-the-scenes featurettes, director commentaries, and cast interviews that deepen the viewing experience. The packaging design leans into the comedic thriller theme, with vibrant artwork capturing the film’s spirit. Perfect for collectors and fans of classic comedies, this movie remains a gem in the comedy genre that continues to delight new generations of viewers.

What is a famous line from Throw Momma from the Train?

“Owen! Dinner’s gonna be cold!” Now, that’s a line from “Throw Momma from the Train” that’ll stick with you, right? It’s delivered by Anne Ramsey’s character, and boy, does she nail that gruff demeanor we can’t help but remember.

What is the plot of Throw Momma from the Train?

“Throw Momma from the Train” is a dark comedy that chugs along the tracks of humor and homicide. Picture this: a bitter writing student thinks his teacher has offered to “off” his nightmare of a mom if he returns the favor. The ensuing train ride is a whirlwind of misunderstandings and mishaps that’ll keep you chuckling.

Is Throw Momma from the Train OK for kids?

Well, stick to the age rating, folks! “Throw Momma from the Train” is PG-13, and rightfully so. It’s got a mix of adult themes, some edgy humor, and a teeny bit of violence that might not be the ticket for the kiddos.

What happened to the lady from Throw Momma from the Train?

Anne Ramsey, the unforgettable lady from “Throw Momma from the Train,” sadly passed away in 1988, not long after the film released. She fought a tough battle with cancer, leaving behind a legacy of iconic roles that still crack us up.

What is the last line of the girl on the train?

“And I am no longer afraid.” – Talk about a powerful last line! This zinger from “The Girl on the Train” has our protagonist finding her strength, making it a heck of a mic drop moment.

What is an important quote from the girl on the train?

“You’re tied to the tracks and the train’s coming through.” This quote from “The Girl on the Train” isn’t just about suspense; it’s a metaphor for the protagonist’s life spiraling out of control – talk about laying it on thick!

Are Billy Crystal and Danny DeVito friends?

Alright, spill the beans – are Billy Crystal and Danny DeVito buddies in real life? You betcha! These two hit it off while filming “Throw Momma from the Train” and their bromance has been going strong ever since, giving us all major friendship goals.

Who is the old lady in Throw Momma from the Train?

The old lady who stole the show in “Throw Momma from the Train” is none other than Anne Ramsey. With a voice that could grate cheese and a glare that could send shivers down your spine, she was the perfect momma to be thrown from a train, metaphorically speaking.

Is Throw Momma from the Train a good movie?

Is “Throw Momma from the Train” a good movie? Well, let’s put it this way – if laughs are your destination, then this flick’s the ticket! It’s a quirky, darkly comic ride that’s got critics and audiences alike giving it the thumbs-up.

Where was Throw Momma from the Train filmed?

Oh, the setting in “Throw Momma from the Train”? Filming took place in the sunny state of California. From the picturesque landscapes to the familiar cityscapes, it’s like a love letter to the Golden State—with a side of comedy!

What year was Throw Momma from the Train filmed?

“Throw Momma from the Train” hit the big screen back in 1987. And let me tell you, the ’80s really knew how to mix comedy and crime in a way that still feels fresh today.

What is Billy Crystal in?

Billy Crystal? Now, there’s a face you recognize! He’s been in a whole gamut of hits, from laugh-out-loud comedies like “When Harry Met Sally” and “City Slickers” to hosting the Oscars. Crystal’s got that magic touch that turns everything he’s in into gold.

Is the girl from the train a true story?

Hold your horses, “The Girl on the Train” is not a true story, but goodness gracious, it sure feels real! This psychological thriller is actually based on Paula Hawkins’ bestselling novel, which takes us on one heck of a fictional ride.

How old is Anne Ramsey?

Anne Ramsey, the actress who became a cult classic momma in “Throw Momma from the Train,” was 59 years young when she passed away. With her unmistakable rasp and tough-as-nails screen presence, she was truly one of a kind.

Who is the bad mom in the Goonies?

Ah, the “bad mom” in “The Goonies” – that’s Anne Ramsey again! She played Mama Fratelli, the criminal mastermind with a mean streak and a face only a son could love, making our adventure-seeking kids’ quest all the more thrilling.


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