Stallone Month: Stop! Or My Mom Will Shoot

Seriously, this is a trailer for an actual movie.

What a putrid movie. I was going to skip this movie for Stallone Month in favor of one of Sly’s straight action flicks. But, after I saw the trailer, I decided this movie had to be included. Missile Test has a jones for shitty movies, after all. And this might be the shittiest movie Sylvester Stallone has ever appeared in, including Death Race 2000.

Stop! Or My Mom Will Shoot hails from 1992. It was the result, possibly, of the success Arnold Schwarzenegger and Ivan Reitman (who was one of the producers of this film) had with their comedies. Sylvester Stallone and Schwarzenegger had been competing for the same audiences throughout the 1980s, and it was Arnold that had the biggest success in crossing over to comedy. In fact, his comedies were earning bigger box office than his action and sci-fi flicks. Of course Sly would want to get in on that. And so we have Stop! Or My Mom Will Shoot.

This is a vile movie. I like watching shitty movies, but there is a fine line between an enjoyable shitty movie and an unwatchable mess. This flick is the latter. Sly stars as Sergeant Joe Bomowski of the LAPD. He’s an unremarkable movie cop, only lightly drawing on Hollywood cliché to fill out his persona. He’s also got serious mother issues. That’s because his mother, Tutti (Estelle Getty), treats him like a child. That’s not metaphor. She comes to visit him and hover over his life, even tucking him into bed one night. It’s painful to watch a grown man be so emasculated.

So, there’s a plot. One day, Tutti decides to clean Joe’s gun, by using bleach and giving it a good scrub. Of course, she ruins it. I’m pretty sure this was supposed to be funny. I know that, because the soundtrack has all the sophistication of a trombone going ‘wah wah waaaaaaah.’ Whenever we in the audience are supposed to be experiencing humor, Alan Silvestri’s cheeky music lets us know.

Anyway, Tutti tries to fix her mistake by buying her son a new handgun. This leads her to a back alley where she buys a gun illegally. On her way out of the alley, she happens to witness the gun dealers she was just with get murdered in a drive-by shooting. Now she’s a witness in a murder case, and Joe has to chase down the killers before they get his mom, or something. Of course, Tutti ends up basically becoming Joe’s partner during the investigation, because someone thought turning a five-minute joke into a feature length film was a good idea. A lot of SNL cast members have suffered from the same affliction.

This movie was a struggle to get through. The script is bad, the jokes are flat, and Sly spent the entire film acting exasperated. It has the tone of a family comedy but the violence of a buddy cop flick. That makes it unsatisfying to fans of either type of film. Watching it is a hateful experience. Director Roger Spottiswoode, no great filmmaker but still better than this trash, made a movie that is among the worst I have had the displeasure to see. In the Shitty Movie Sundays annals, it’s every bit as bad as Theodore Rex. A big star signed on for a payday, and the result was a pile of crap. This is not a film to watch for enjoyment, pure or ironical. It’s one to simply avoid. Alien: Resurrection is a far better film than Stop! Or My Mom Will Shoot.