Good Girls Want Him Bad, Bad Girls Want Him Worse

Good Girls Want Him Bad, Bad Girls Want Him Worse

Static Mass Rating: 4/5
CRY BABY (Blu-ray)
Universal Pictures

Release date: July 25th, 2011
Certificate (UK): 15
Running time: 81 minutes

Year of production: 1990

Writer and director: John Waters
Producer: Rachel Talalay
Composer: Patrick Williams

Cast: Johnny Depp, Amy Locane, Polly Bergen, Iggy Pop, Willem Dafoe, Joe Dallesandro, Troy Donahue, Patricia Hearst, Joey Heatherton, Ricki Lake, Traci Lords, Kim McGuire, David Nelson, Mink Stole, Susan Tyrell

Official Movie Site

There’s always been something magical and alluring about American films either from or set in the 1950′s. Whether it’s the rockabilly sound, the cool look of the cars and clothes or the innocence of the generation, it just seemed like an amazing time to be a teenager and John Waters’ Cry Baby is no exception.

His touch of dark and quirky humour that we’ve come to know from films such as Pink Flamingos (1972) and Hairspray (1988) helps steer us through what we’d normally see as clichés in this age-old story of boy meets girl.

Cry Baby

This is done by employing a bizarre cast of characters and inspired casting where we get to see Iggy Pop playing father to Johnny Depp’s rebellious Wade “Cry Baby” Walker and Rikki Lake as his teenage sister, Pepper Walker, knocked up for the nth time.

Together with their gang which includes Mona “Hatchet Face” Malnorowski (Kim McGuire), Wanda Woodward (Traci Lords), and Milton Hackett (Darren E. Burrows), they’re “drapes” and they don’t mix with “squares” under any circumstances.

Cry Baby

That’s until Allison Vernon-Williams (Amy Locane) comes along, she’s what we can call one hot square and Cry Baby, in no time, is itching beneath his denim to get into her groove. As Allison takes to hanging out with the gang, her square pals aren’t too pleased, neither is her grandmother (Polly Bergen) or Lenora Frigid (Kim Webb), a girl who’s obsessed with Cry Baby.

When a night of crooning erupts into a riot, the lovebirds are separated. Cry Baby is sent to jail where he ends up getting a tattoo of a single teardrop on his face; “I’ve been hurt all my life, but real tears wash away. This one’s for Allison and I want it to last forever!”

Cry Baby

With a firm tone of parody towards films like Grease (1978), there also a nod to Rebel Without a Cause (1955) and Jailhouse Rock (1957) but Cry Baby manages to hold its own. This is partly down to Depp’s electric performance where he vigorously channels Elvis Presley during the film’s numerous musical numbers complete with the lip curl and swivelling hips.


  • Feature Commentary with John Waters
  • It Came From Baltimore (47:38)
  • Deleted Scenes (7:02)

Songs like “Teardrops Are Falling“, “Please, Mr. Jailer” and “High School Hellcats” are definite highpoints in the film and as the story works its way to through the finale you can’t help but tap your toes at the very least. It’s all round fun and the only shame is that we don’t get to see much of Joe Dellasandro, but that might be because most of us have already seen an eyeful of him already!

About Patrick Samuel

Patrick Samuel

The founder of Static Mass Emporium and one of its Editors in Chief is a composer and music producer with a philosophy degree. Static Mass is where he lives his passion for film and writing about it. A fan of film classics, documentaries and World Cinema, Patrick prefers films with an impeccable way of storytelling that reflect on the human condition.