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"MEET WALLY SPARKS"
(1997) (Rodney Dangerfield, David Ogden Stiers) (R)

Alcohol/
Drugs
Blood/Gore Disrespectful/
Bad Attitude
Frightening/
Tense Scenes
Guns/
Weapons
Mild Minor Mild None Mild
Imitative
Behavior
Jump
Scenes
Music
(Scary/Tense)
Music
(Inappropriate)
Profanity
Moderate None None None Moderate
Sex/
Nudity
Smoking Tense Family
Scenes
Topics To
Talk About
Violence
Heavy Mild Minor Mild Mild


QUICK TAKE:
Comedy: A talk show host broadcasts his shows from the home of a governor who openly dislikes him.
PLOT:
Wally Sparks (RODNEY DANGERFIELD) is a tabloid TV talk show host. Known for his outrageous shows and lack of taste, he's stirred up the wrath of conservative southern Governor Preston (DAVID OGDEN STIERS) as well as network CEO, Mr. Spencer (BURT REYNOLDS). After Preston's son invites Sparks to a campaign rally, Sparks and his producer, Sandy (DEBI MAZAR), decide to stay and broadcast his show from the Governor's mansion. This greatly upsets Preston's wife, Emily (CINDY WILLIAMS) and his campaign manager, Harvey Bishop (MARK TAYLOR). It does, however, allow a romance to bud between Spark's son, Dean (MICHAEL WEATHERLY) and Preston's daughter, Priscilla (LISA THORNHILL). As a sex scandal rocks the Governor's office, Sparks tries to come to the rescue while avoiding Spencer's assistant, Miller, who's trying to get Sparks fired.
WILL KIDS WANT TO SEE IT?
If they're fans of Dangerfield, they might.
WHY THE MPAA RATED IT: R
For continuous crude sexual humor and some nudity.
CAST AS ROLE MODELS:
  • RODNEY DANGERFIELD plays a talk show host with a lack of taste and good manners.
  • DAVID OGDEN STIERS plays a conservative governor who objects to Spark's TV show and behavior.
  • CAST, CREW, & TECHNICAL INFO

    HOW OTHERS RATED THIS MOVIE


    OUR TAKE: 3 out of 10
    While we've enjoyed some of Dangerfield's movies in the past, this one comes up rather lame. With the humor based mostly on sophomoric sexual humor and slapstick comedy, the movie is occasionally funny but also contains long stretches of forced comedy that just don't work. There are many celebrity cameos, but unfortunately most of them don't work and aren't funny. Tony Danza shows up driving a taxi (a joke about his days on the TV show "Taxi"), but it's a bit of uninspired writing. Burt Reynolds is wasted in his role as a network CEO that could have been scrapped altogether, and Cindy Williams' take on the flighty wife of the governor is embarrassing to say the least (including a scene where she drunkenly dances -- and shakes "her thing" in her bra and slip -- to "Whole Lotta Shaking Going On". And singer Michael Bolton shows up and sings a horribly lip synched song. Dangerfield fans will probably enjoy his trademark one liners and his wide-eyed looks of exasperation. Others will find a few scenes funny, but overall this is a lame, forced comedy. We give it just a 3 out of 10.
    OUR WORD TO PARENTS:
    Sexual content is the big factor in this movie. While some bare breasts are seen, most of the material comes from innuendos about sex and/or genital sizes. While some of it will go over younger kids' heads, there is a tremendous amount of it present in this movie. Several people are moderately drunk in different scenes, and profanity isn't too bad (1 "f" and 3 "s" words) considering all of the sexual material. There is some slapstick violence and property damage but it isn't that horrible either. Since there is so much sexual innuendo, we heavily suggest that you read through the scene listings to determine if this movie is appropriate for you and your kids.

    ALCOHOL OR DRUG USE
  • People drink champagne and other liquor at a campaign reception.
  • Wally says, "I'll be in the bar investigating Jack Daniels." Later he's seen carrying a bottle of whiskey and appears to be drunk. He then feeds some to a horse that later also appears to be drunk.
  • Sandy asks Harvey for "sex on the beach" drinks.
  • Wally carries a drink in each hand.
  • Wally pours a glass of brandy (but isn't seen drinking it).
  • Mrs. Preston and two other bridge players have been drinking Jack Daniels and are drunk.
  • People drink in a bar.
  • People drink champagne at a wedding reception.
  • BLOOD/GORE
  • There's a quick shot of a person lying on the ground with a cinder block on their face that is smashed with a sledgehammer. The person then sits up and has what looks to be a very bloody face.
  • After Miller falls from a tree he has a tiny bit of blood running from his nose.
  • DISRESPECTFUL/BAD ATTITUDE
  • Many of Wally's jokes come at the expense of others' behavior or appearance.
  • After seeing two people making out and saying, "You two should get a room," Wally sees an obese couple and says, "You two should get a warehouse."
  • Obese people are also used in slapstick scenes where they fall onto people.
  • A "pro" wrestler calls two sumo wrestlers, "fat tubs of lard."
  • FRIGHTENING SCENES
  • None.
  • GUNS/WEAPONS
  • Shotgun: Used by Wally to shoot clay pigeons (skeet) from a bedroom window.
  • Civil war sword: Used by a judge to attack Wally (but he's never hit).
  • Handgun: Used by a woman to threaten several people at a party and then accidentally fired several times during a struggle to get the gun away from her.
  • IMITATIVE BEHAVIOR
  • A person bites into a light bulb in a quick shot from a talk show program.
  • A person with studs (earrings) in their tongue is seen on a talk show program.
  • There's a quick shot of a person lying on the ground with a cinder block on their face that is smashed with a sledgehammer.
  • Phrases: "Bitch," "Idiot," "Pissed," "Shut up," "Toots" (for a woman), "Why don't you go and pluck yourself?" "Take a leak," "Fat tubs of lard," and "Screw you."
  • Wally dips his arm into a punch bowl and then wipes it off on a man's coattails.
  • Wally feeds whiskey to a horse.
  • JUMP SCENES
  • None.
  • MUSIC (SCARY/TENSE)
  • None.
  • MUSIC (INAPPROPRIATE)
  • None.
  • PROFANITY
  • 1 "f" word (and two uses of "freakin"), 3 "s" words, 8 "ass" words, 6 hells, 5 damns, 1 slang term for breasts (the "t" word), 1 incomplete "son of a...", and 2 uses of "Oh my God," and 1 use each of "For God's sakes," "My God," and "Oh Lord" as exclamations.
  • SEX/NUDITY
  • Bare breasts are quickly seen twice on a talk show program.
  • Wally asks whether he can eat a banana (that is sitting in a woman's cleavage) and still be a gentleman.
  • Wally and his TV crew watch a porno tape (thinking they'll ask the star to appear on their program). All we see is a man from the chest up, whose moaning sounds and movement imply that he's having sex. Later the same tape is seen at a campaign reception.
  • Sandy spills her drink onto Harvey's crotch and then rubs a napkin there and says (about the stain), "I think it's coming out." Harvey thinks she's talking about something else and has a horrified look on his face.
  • Wally sees two people making out says, "You two should get a room," and seeing two obese people says, "You two should get a warehouse."
  • Wally accidentally breaks the penis off a Romanesque statue and puts it into his pocket. It slides around and then juts out in his pants, giving him the appearance of having an erection. He then dances with Mrs. Preston who feels it (and is horrified) and then accidentally bumps into Gov. Preston (who is bent over) with it (this is later seen on a videotape that repeatedly shows the bumping). Later, the penis ends up on an hors d' orve tray where a woman blindly picks it up, dips it into a dip and almost puts it into her mouth.
  • Priscilla unexpectedly comes home and gets into her bed (not knowing that Dean is sleeping there). She reaches over, feels his leg and then feels his crotch for a moment before screaming and leaping from the bed.
  • The bare side of Dean's butt is seen as he dries himself off after coming out of the shower.
  • Sandy asks Harvey for "sex on the beach" drinks.
  • There's talk about a woman wearing a "virgin wool sweater" and of her body rejecting it.
  • Wally calls an escort (hooker) to visit him. She's dressed like a nurse and he tells her, "You should be the HEAD nurse," and then tells her that she's in the perfect business: "You got it, you sell it, you still got it." It's implied that they have sex as she's later seen getting dressed. Wally then sends her down to the governor where she opens her blouse and shows him her bra covered breasts.
  • Wally plays strip poker with Mrs. Preston and two other bridge players and the women are seen in their bras and slips. After Mrs. Preston drunkenly falls to the floor, Wally tells the shocked governor, "You can take her upstairs, she's ready now."
  • After Mrs. Preston says that perfume behind her ear drives the governor crazy, Wally tells her what can be put behind her ears to drive men crazy: "Your ankles."
  • Preston tells Priscilla to be in bed by twelve (after her date with Dean), but Wally says, "He'll (Dean) have her in bed by ten."
  • Preston receives faxed pictures of him and a woman in bed. He's seen licking her bare nipple and in another picture she's seen on top of him and her bare breast is seen. That woman later says that Preston got her drunk and then sexually molested her.
  • When Wally sees a judge with the above woman he says, "It looks like the judge is banging more than his gavel."
  • A woman says that "Love makes the world go around." Wally says, "No, it makes it go up and down."
  • There are many one liner jokes about sex including:
  • "I saved a girl from being attacked -- I changed my mind."
  • Sparks mentions a woman doing pushups in a cucumber garden.
  • When a man mentions all the girls Wally turned down, Wally says, "Think of all the girls you turned over."
  • Roseanne (from the TV show of the same name) says about Wally, "He was a lousy lay."
  • Wally mentions "sex after ten years of marriage" and then asks, "Should the wife know about it?"
  • Wally mentions that his life has been "a tale of woe" and then says that it's been "more woe than tale."
  • Wally sees a chart that displays a line showing two peaks and two valleys and says, "I see a girl lying on her back."
  • Wally says at a reception, "I came here to spread Joy -- if I can find her."
  • A woman tells Wally, "I don't believe in casual sex." He replies, "It won't be casual. I'll keep my tie on."
  • Wally says at a party, "You guys want to see some laughs? Run a porno movie backwards. That way you see the hooker get the money."
  • Wally says, "I hear Canadians have sex doggy style, so they can both watch the hockey game."
  • There are many one liner jokes about male genitals including:
  • Mentioning the phrase "hard to believe" Sparks says, "My ex-wife used to say I can't believe it's hard."
  • Wally says, "The only stiff I want to see is when I'm naked."
  • Hearing the phrase "don't go soft on me," Wally says, "I hate it when a woman says that to me."
  • After rubbing his itchy back on a woman's coat he tells her, "Stick around, I might get jock itch."
  • After Sandy opens the shower curtain, Wally says, "What are you trying to prove? Little things mean a lot?"
  • Sandy tells Wally not to lift anything over ten pounds to which he replies, "Now I can't take a leak."
  • While playing poker with Mrs. Preston and two other women, Wally tells them, "I've got a straight, but I can't show it to you now."
  • After Mrs. Preston tells Wally that she loves how he plays the piano, he tells her, "You should see me play my upright organ."
  • Wally begins to tell Miller that his dog "doesn't have a dangerous bone in his body," but after the dog begins rubbing Miller's leg he says, "well, maybe one."
  • A squirrel scurries up Wally's pants to his crotch. Wally tells it, "Go find your own nuts." Later a squirrel climbs up Miller's leg and he gets a pleased look on his face.
  • A person is asked, "Did you slide your saber into that modern day Jezebel?"
  • Wally says that Preston could enter a three legged race by himself.
  • Wally says, "Let's all get naked and see who the best man is."
  • SMOKING
  • Spencer smokes cigars twice.
  • Men smoke cigars at a campaign reception.
  • Mrs. Preston smokes a cigarette and her bridge playing companions smoke cigars after they've gotten drunk while playing strip poker.
  • TENSE FAMILY SCENES
  • Preston and his son, and Sparks and his son, don't have great father-son relationships, but this is never played out to be too serious.
  • TOPICS TO TALK ABOUT
  • All of the sexual innuendo that occurs throughout the movie.
  • VIOLENCE
  • There's a quick shot of a person lying on the ground with a cinder block on their face that is smashed with a sledgehammer.
  • Preston pinches and then whacks his son on the back of his head after he was slouching with a bad attitude during the filming of a campaign commercial.
  • Wally rides a horse (both drunk) through the mansion and knock over many people and pieces of furniture before Wally is thrown by the horse through a window.
  • Spencer slaps his assistant.
  • Wally stages a TV show where "pro" and sumo wrestlers get into a fight. Punches are thrown as are bodies, and lots of furniture is damaged.
  • Wally shoots at a clay target and hits a tree branch causing Miller to fall to the ground.
  • Miller accidentally ties himself to a car and is then pulled across a wall and through the yard as the car drives away.
  • Miller falls backwards on a ladder and crashes to the ground.
  • A judge comes after Wally with a civil war sword and swings and jabs it at him and others. He also picks up a large vase and throws it at Dean and another man.
  • A woman pulls out a gun and threatens to shoot people. Mrs. Preston slugs the woman and as everyone struggles for the gun, it's fired several times.



  • Reviewed January 30, 1997

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