So I Married an Axe Murderer
Starring: Mike Myers, Nancy Travis, Anthony LaPaglia, Amanda Plummer, Brenda Fricker
Director: Thomas Schlamme
Sony Pictures / TriStar Pictures
Rated PG-13 for nudity, language and mock terror
Before Mike Myers was playing multiple roles in the “Austin Powers” franchise and showcasing his Scottish accent in the “Shrek” films, he was doing both in a little-seen comedy called So I Married an Axe Murderer. A delightfully hilarious, quirky, and offbeat dark comedy, So I Married an Axe Murderer was overlooked by viewers and critics alike when it premiered in 1993, but it has since risen to the status of cult classic. The movie features great comedic performances and throws in a little suspense here and there to keep the audience guessing with its many twists and turns. Now part of VUDU’s $2 for 2 Nights program, you can rent So I Married an Axe Murderer in SD, HD, and HDX starting at just $2, and it is yours to view for 48-hours.
So I Married an Axe Murderer follows Charlie McKenzie (Mike Myers), a beat poet living in San Francisco with a deep fear of commitment. He finds fault in his girlfriends over the littlest of things to use an excuse to break up with them. His best friend Tony (Anthony LaPaglia), a police officer, and his parents Stuart (Mike Myers) and May (Brenda Fricker) all want him to stop being so picky and settle down. When Charlie meets Harriet (Nancy Travis), he takes his family and friend’s advice and does his best to fall in love with her. Their advice works, and soon Charlie and Harriet are deeply in love. When Charlie reads a tabloid story about a mysterious woman who murders her husbands on her honeymoon, Charlie begins to suspect that Harriet might be that murderer. Everyone says he’s paranoid and falling back into his old ways, but as Charlie learns more and more about Harriet’s past, he begins to think his suspicions may be true!
Mike Myers had hoped that So I Married an Axe Murderer would allow him to shed his “Saturday Night Live” persona and allow him to break out on his own. Released on the heels of his SNL spinoff film “Wayne’s World”, So I Married an Axe Murderer just wasn’t able to find the audience he hoped for. But his comedic sensibilities and ability to play multiple roles would serve well for his future roles. While he does more than a fine job as Charlie, it is his other role as his father, Stuart, which really allows him to shine. Myers seems to do best when he’s hidden under the guise of makeup and wig, which allows him to create a whole new personality. He steals all the scenes he’s in as Stuart, from verbally berating his youngest son and spouting off conspiracy theories, to yelling at his family at his wedding anniversary and singing along with a bagpiper at a wedding. Myers is able to fully let loose and have a blast as Stuart, and truly give us one of his most memorable characters ever.
While Myers does an amazing job at carry to bulk of the comedy workload in this film, it is the hilarious supporting and cameo performances of other actors and comedians that helps make this movie so memorable. The repartee between Anthony LaPaglia and Alan Arkin (in an uncredited performance) is priceless. LaPaglia wants nothing more than excitement from his boring police work, and to do so, he tries to convince Arkin, his commanding officer, to be more like the stereotypical police captains from film and television. Trouble is, Arkin is too much of a nice guy, who’d rather talk about feelings and talk through problems. Phil Hartman gives a perfect monotone performance as an Alcatraz tour guide who used to be a former Alcatraz prison guard, Steven Wright will have you laughing in tears as an inept private airplane pilot, and Charles Grodin plays a perturbed citizen to perfection who objects to and detests an attempt to have his vehicle commandeered for police action. There’s plenty of out of the ordinary and wacky comedy throughout this movie, making this movie not just another typical romantic comedy.
So I Married an Axe Murderer certainly set the wheels in motion for Mike Myers A-list career in Hollywood. This movie helped jump start the careers of several people involved with it, including multiple-award winning television director and producer Thomas Schlamme who was directing only his second feature with this film. If you’re a fan of quirky and unusual humor, then this just might be the movie for you.
DID YOU KNOW?
The character of Stuart McKenzie actually originated in a Saturday Night Live sketch, although he had a different last name. Mike Myers based the mannerisms and characteristics of Stuart after his real life father.