Screwed (2000 film)
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Scott Alexander
|Produced by||Robert Simonds|
|Written by||Scott Alexander
|Music by||Michel Colombier|
|Edited by||Michael Jablow|
|Distributed by||Universal Studios|
|Release date(s)||May 12, 2000|
|Running time||81 minutes|
Screwed is a 2000 American comedy film, written and directed by Scott Alexander and Larry Karaszewski. It stars Norm Macdonald, Dave Chappelle, Danny DeVito, Elaine Stritch, Daniel Benzali, Sarah Silverman, and Sherman Hemsley. The film released by Universal Studios, is rated PG-13 (in the United States) for crude and sex-related humor, nudity, language, some violence and brief drug content.
It went through a number of title changes before the producers finally settled on "Screwed"; preliminary titles included "Pittsburgh" (the name of the Pennsylvania city in which the film takes place) and also "Ballbusted" (due to Stritch's character's harshness exhibited throughout the movie; at one point, Chappelle's character refers to her as a "ballbuster").
Willard (Norm Macdonald) is an overworked, underpaid chauffeur who works for a mean-spirited pie heiress named Mrs. Crock (Elaine Stritch), just as his father did before him. All Willard wants for Christmas is a new uniform, as the one he currently wears is the one his father was buried in, but Crock gives him a cheap pair of cuff links and a pie instead, while lavishing expensive gifts on her business partner Chip Oswald (Sherman Hemsley) and her prized dog Muffin. Finally fed up with being mistreated, Willard and his best friend, local chicken restaurant owner Rusty (Dave Chappelle), concoct a scheme to kidnap the dog and hold it for a $1,000,000 ransom. Muffin attacks him, leaving a great deal of destruction and Willard's blood at the scene, and the plan fails when the dog later escapes.
However, Crock and the Pittsburgh police misinterpret the hastily scrawled ransom note and believe that Willard himself has been kidnapped. Crock refuses to pay up initially until met with public protests led by Willard's on-again off-again girlfriend Hillary (Sarah Silverman). Willard and Rusty come up with a new scheme, in which Willard films a fake ransom video and releases it to the media, putting pressure on Crock to come up with the money to preserve her public image as a kindly old grandmother. The plan calls for Willard to mug his boss as she goes to drop off the ransom money, and to have a dead body left behind dressed as Willard to throw off the police. They enlist the services of a creepy morgue employee named Grover Cleaver (Danny DeVito) to find an appropriate corpse and schedule a meeting at night in the park.
This plan also goes wrong, however, when Willard succeeds in getting the money, only to lose it to two small children who attack him with a taser and a shiv and steal the suitcase. Willard is found by the police and sent to a hospital, as the children have soundly brutalized him. The police then find the dead body that was supposed to take the place of Willard as he made his getaway, and Willard claims that it was his captor. The police are suspicious, as Grover used the body of an old homeless dwarf, but Willard claims he was "more ferocious when he was alive". Willard dejectedly returns to work for Mrs. Crock (who claims that he now owes her the ransom as well) until the mother of one of his attackers shows up and returns the briefcase. Overjoyed, Willard and Rusty plan to go on a long vacation only to find that the briefcase was filled with newspaper and cabbage.
After interrogating Willard and Rusty (during which Rusty reveals his habit of striking people with desk lamps when nervous), the police go after Grover, who goes on a rampage, kidnapping Mrs. Crock while waiting for the share of money Willard promised him. Willard goes to Grover and confronts his employer, finding out that the money was actually in the briefcase but was stolen by Chip Oswald, who planned to double-cross them all and make off with his boyfriend. He also discovers to everyone's disgust that his father was also Mrs. Crock's lover as well as manservant. After the police converge on Grover's place, Crock convinces them that the trio are actually her rescuers.
In the end, Willard leads the police to Chip's apartment, where the ransom money is discovered. When Chip pulls a gun, Rusty panics and knocks him unconscious by hitting him in the head with a lava lamp. Mrs. Crock expresses her gratitude by paying for Willard to attend college at the University of Southern California and buying him a new Armani suit, and paying for Rusty to open a new Chicken Hole on the beach. Willard finally reconciles with Hillary, while Crock herself ends up in a romantic relationship with Grover.
- Norm Macdonald as Willard Fillmore
- Dave Chappelle as Rusty P. Hayes
- Danny DeVito as Grover Cleaver
- Elaine Stritch as Mrs. Crock
- Daniel Benzali as Detective Tom Dewey
- Sarah Silverman as Hillary
- Sherman Hemsley as Chip Oswald
- Malcolm Stewart as Roger
- Lochlyn Munro as Officer Richardson
The movie features character names meant to be spoofs of the names of former U.S. presidents. These include the butler Willard Fillmore (Millard Fillmore), his sidekick Rusty P. Hayes (Rutherford B. Hayes), and their coroner accomplice Grover Cleaver (Grover Cleveland). Other not-so-subtle references to presidential history are a character named Hillary and others with the last names Oswald and Dewey. The name of the wealthy piemaker who serves as Willard's boss, Mrs. Crock, is also a spoof of the famous General Mills company Betty Crocker.
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