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A childless couple unable to adopt decide that a couple who just had quintuplets won't mind if they steal one of the babies. Thus begins the Coen brothers' madcap romp RAISING ARIZONA. Holly Hunter stars as Ed, a cop who is devastated when she learns that she cannot get pregnant. Nicolas Cage is her husband, H.I., an ex-con who wants nothing more than to make his wife the happiest woman in the world. So if she wants a baby, she's going to have a baby, one way or another.
Heading up the supporting cast of bizarre characters are John Goodman and William Forsythe as crazy cousins who have just busted out of prison, Sam McMurray and Frances McDormand as Ed and H.I.'s swinging friends, and Randall "Tex" Cobb as a motorcycle madman hired to rescue the baby. RAISING ARIZONA is the Coen brothers' most consistently funny film. Carter Burwell's score, replete with infectious yodeling, is relentless, Barry Sonnenfeld's cinematography is beautifully wacky, and the manic dialogue is the brothers' most quotable. The film is a treat for the ears and the eyes, a one-of-a-kind sensation from a marvelous pair of filmmakers.
Ethan Coen - American producer/screenwriter/director
Nicolas Cage - American Actor
Nicholas Coppola - American Actor
Nicolas Coppola - American Actor
William Forsythe - American Actor, RAISING ARIZONA, DICK TRACY, BLUE STREAK
Bill Forsythe - American Actor, RAISING ARIZONA, DICK TRACY, BLUE STREAK
Sam McMurray - Actor/"La Story"
Trey Wilson - "Nathan Arizona" (nee Hufheinz)
Frances McDormand - American Actress
Joel Coen - American director/screenwriter/producer
Randall "Tex" Cobb - American Supporting Actor
M. Emmet Walsh - American Character Actor
Michael Emmet Walsh - American Character Actor
Carter Burwell - American composer, NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN
John Goodman - American Film/TV Actor
Holly Hunter - American Actress, RAISING ARIZONA (1987)
Barry Sonnenfeld - American Director of Photography/Director
RAISING ARIZONA is a surreal, hyperactive farce in which a bumbling petty thief and the lady cop who keeps arresting him fall in love and decide to start a family. When they discover they can't have babies, they steal one from a furniture mogul who has just sired a set of quintuplets. The joys of parenthood are soon marred, however, by the difficulties of raising an infant on the run. The none-too-bright couple must flee across the southwestern desert in order to elude the villainous biker that has been hired to retrieve the tyke.
Theatrical release: March 6, 1987 (New York City); March 20, 1987 (Los Angeles). Filmed in Phoenix, Scottsdale, and Tempe, Arizona. Associate producer Deborah Reinisch also served as the second assistant director. Fifteen babies were used during the shooting of the film. Randall "Tex" Cobb was formerly a professional boxer. John Goodman also appears in the Coen brothers' BARTON FINK, THE BIG LEBOWSKI, and O BROTHER, WHERE ART THOU?, and he voices the newsreel announcer in THE HUDSUCKER PROXY. Frances McDormand, who is married to Joel Coen, also appears (uncredited) in MILLER'S CROSSING and stars in FARGO and BLOOD SIMPLE. M. Emmet Walsh, who also appears in BLOOD SIMPLE, makes a cameo as a talkative factory worker. H.I. has a Woody Woodpecker tattoo on his arm; Leonard Smalls sports the same tattoo, as well as one that announces, "Mama didn't love me." One of the main characters in OF MICE AND MEN is named Lennie Small, which is awful close to Leonard Smalls, the "warthog from hell." When H.I. Is working in the factory, he is wearing a Hudsucker Industries shirt--that company was the main company in THE HUDSUCKER PROXY. The letters OPE and POE in the gas station bathroom where Gale and Evelle are cleaning up are an homage to the letters that Jack D. Ripper is obsessed with in DR. STRANGELOVE.
"...Wonderfully funny....Joel Coen is an original..." - 06/01/1987 Sight and Sound, p.218-9
"...Quirky humor and off-the-wall situations....As a director Coen demonstrates an assured technical touch..." - 03/04/1987 Variety
"...RAISING ARIZONA is miraculously adept technically....Nicolas Cage has crammed every ounce of sweet earnestness into Hi..." - 03/20/1987 Los Angeles Times, p.C1
"...Still one of its year's best movies..." - 04/30/1996 USA Today, p.8D