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Today’s Debut: Raising Arizona

June 24th, 2008 by Rebecca Harper Editor

When I was a kid, I wasn’t allowed to watch television without asking permission. (Thanks again, Mom!) Occasionally, though, when my brothers and I were especially good, we’d get to pop a film into the VCR during dinner. One of my parents’ favorite things was to show us movies from the ’80s, videos we were too young to see the first time around. We started with Raising Arizona and I’ve been laughing ever since.

Week two of the Hulu Days of Summer brings Raising Arizona to our ever-growing list of movies. The first major hit for the Coen Brothers — who went on to make O Brother, Where Art Thou?, No Country for Old Men and The Big Lebowski — it features Nicolas Cage and Holly Hunter as a recently married ex-con and ex-cop who can’t have a baby. Getting desperate, they kidnap one from a set of quintuplets. The baby’s biological father hires a bounty hunter to get the baby back, and the ex-con’s old friends bust out of jail. Clearly, things go downhill from there. Between Cage’s mustache, Hunter’s expressions and the witty Coen dialogue, Raising Arizona is one of my favorites.

Now that I’m allowed to watch as much TV as I want (one of the advantages of being a grown-up), I sometimes find myself watching this movie again. What can I say? I have a great appreciation for physical humor, witty dialogue and ridiculous southern accents. Hopefully, after watching this, so will you!

Jason Nellis
“Mind you don’t cut yourself, Mordecai!”