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The Gun in Betty Lou's Handbag (1992)

PG-13 | | Comedy, Mystery | 21 August 1992 (USA)
An ignored, small-town librarian confesses to a murder she didn't commit to get attention.

Director:

Allan Moyle
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Penelope Ann Miller ... Betty Lou
Eric Thal ... Alex
Alfre Woodard ... Ann
Julianne Moore ... Elinor
Andy Romano ... Herrick
Ray McKinnon ... Frank
William Forsythe ... Beaudeen
Xander Berkeley ... Marchat
Michael O'Neill ... Jergens
Christopher John Fields ... Brown
Cathy Moriarty ... Reba
Billie Neal Billie Neal ... Gail
Gale Mayron Gale Mayron ... Pearl
Faye Grant ... Charleen
Reathel Bean Reathel Bean ... Bob Barnes
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Storyline

Betty Lou is a librarian in a very small town. Her husband, Alex, is a police detective who takes her for granted. She is the ultimate mouse. After a gangland figure is mysteriously murdered in town, she finds the murder weapon, but can't get anyone's attention to tell them (we're talking very mousy, here). Finally in a fit of frustration she fires it in a restroom and when taken to the police station insists she is the murderer. It has the desired effect, people do pay attention to her. With hints at social graces from the hookers in her cell block, she's on her way. Written by John Vogel <jlvogel@comcast.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The Notoriously Hilarious Comedy! See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Mystery

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for violence, and for some sexuality and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

21 August 1992 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A Arma de Betty Lou See more »

Filming Locations:

Greenwood, Mississippi, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$13,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$1,206,799, 23 August 1992

Gross USA:

$3,721,911

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$3,721,911
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color (Astrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Feature film debut of Julianne Moore See more »

Quotes

Alex Perkins: You know my wife?
Reba Bush: Yeah.
Alex Perkins: How do you know she like gone with the wind?
Reba Bush: She's a friend of mine.
Alex Perkins: Jesus, she knows everybody. Where the hell was I?
Reba Bush: Well, sugar, I think that was a real good question.
Alex Perkins: What do you mean?
Reba Bush: Where were you?
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Mystery Science Theater 3000: Girls Town (1994) See more »

Soundtracks

Had to Lose Myself
Written by Steve Schiff, Tonio K. and Keith Forsey
Performed by Alexis England
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Admittedly All Over The Place
5 July 2006 | by andyetrisSee all my reviews

I get a big kick out of this film, partly because I know a librarian named Betty Lou! Needless to say she is nothing like the semi-stereotypical librarian of the movie...

In the film, Betty Lou is a mousy librarian and frustrated wife. Although innocent, she allows herself to be implicated in a crime of passion in order to challenge her husband's (all too accurate) preconceptions. With the aid of a prostitute with a heart of gold and an ambitious freshman lawyer, Betty Lou transforms herself into an assertive and confidant woman. Unfortunately there are some unforeseen consequences that could cost her her life!

Other reviewers have pointed out that this film is very uneven in tone. It isn't really a romantic comedy, more of a light thriller like "Get Shorty." The real problem is that the plot isn't clever enough for a thriller, the humor isn't sufficient for a comedy, and it certainly isn't dark enough for noir. However it has a naive symbolism I find appealing, and the actors appear to be having a good time with their roles. I'd call it stereotypical rather than sexist - I can easily imagine some women I've known going to such extremes for attention!

I wouldn't go out of my way to look this one up. But if it's on the tube and there's nothing else to see give it a try!


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