Risky Business

One of the smartest, funniest, most perceptive satires in a long time...[the film] not only invites comparison with 'The Graduate,' it earns it.


Risky Business

40th Anniversary Screening
Laemmle’s Royal Theatre
Wednesday, July 12 at 7PM

Actors Rebecca De Mornay, Curtis Armstong, Raphael Sbarge and Bronson Pinchot, writer-director Paul Brickman and producer Jon Avnet in Person!

Laemmle Theatres and the Anniversary Classics Series present a 40th anniversary screening of the 1980s classic RISKY BUSINESS, with three cast members, the writer-director and the producer in attendance. The sexy comedy is remembered as the film that catapulted Tom Cruise to major stardom and it boasts an impressive ensemble that includes Rebecca De Mornay, Curtis Armstong, Raphael Sbarge, Bronson Pinchot, Joe Pantoliano, and Richard Masur. Paul Brickman wrote and directed the picture, which was produced by Jon Avnet and Steve Tisch.

The film tapped into the fantasies of male high school and college students in the 1980s. Cruise plays Joel, a somewhat guarded high school senior in one of the wealthy suburbs of Chicago who hopes to attend Princeton. When his parents leave him home alone for a weekend with their prize Porsche, his friends encourage him to cut loose. In one of the movie’s iconic scenes, he starts by dancing in his underwear to Bob Seger’s raucous “Old Time Rock and Roll.” Then he decides to contact a call girl, Lana (played by De Mornay). They click and she encourages Joel to go into business with her, despite opposition from her shady pimp (Pantoliano).

Complications abound. The father’s prized Porsche is badly damaged; the Princeton admissions officer turns up at the family home at the worst possible time; and Joel has to find a way to make things right before his parents return. He also has an escapade with Lana on Chicago’s L train that remains one of the most memorably erotic scenes in any movie of the period.

The film’s vibrant score by Tangerine Dream is augmented with tracks by Bruce Springsteen and the Police, among other pop luminaries of the era. The movie was a hit, grossing more than $63 million, a very large sum in the early 1980s. Most reviewers praised the film. Leonard Maltin called it a “piquant, original comedy about a reticent teenager who goes a bit wild while his parents are out of town.” Writing in the Chicago Reader, Dave Kehr called 'Risky Business' “one of the finest film explorations of the end of innocence.” Roger Ebert was the most enthusiastic. Praising “new faces and inspired insights and genuine laughs,” he went on to call the movie “one of the smartest, funniest, most perceptive satires in a long time” and added that it “not only invites comparison with 'The Graduate,' it earns it.”

Rebecca De Mornay went on to star in many other successful and diverse films, including 'The Trip to Bountiful,' 'Runaway Train,' 'Backdraft, 'The Hand That Rocks the Cradle,' 'Wedding Crashers,' along with popular TV series 'ER' and 'The Practice.'

Writer-director Paul Brickman's filmography includes 'Citizens Band' and 'Men Don’t Leave.' Producer Jon Avnet's credits include 'The Mighty Ducks,' 'Fried Green Tomatoes,' 'Up Close and Personal' and many more.

Curtis Armstrong's credits include 'Revenge of the Nerds,' 'Better Off Dead,' many TV series including 'Moonlighting,' 'Boston Legal,' 'The Closer,' and 'New Girl.'

Raphael Sbarge has co-starred in many movies and TV series in the last 40 years, including regular roles on 'The Guardian,' 'Once Upon a Time,' and Steven Bochco’s 'Murder in the First.' More recently he has turned to directing documentaries and earned rave reviews for his film about the Laemmle family and the plight of specialized movie theaters, 'Only in Theaters,' which has been shown to enthusiastic audiences across the country.

After completing 'Risky Business,' Bronson Pinchot scored a major success playing the character of Serge in Beverly Hills Cop; he brought the character back in sequels. He co-starred in Martin Scorsese’s 'After Hours,' as well as 'True Romance,' 'Courage Under Fire,' 'The First Wives Club,' and 'Blame It on the Bellboy.' He also co-starred in the long-running TV series, 'Perfect Strangers.'
Comedy, Crime, Drama, Culture Vulture
Paul Brickman
Paul Brickman
Tom Cruise, Rebecca De Mornay, Joe Pantoliano, Nicholas Pryor, Janet Carroll, Richard Masur, Curtis Armstrong, Bronson Pinchot, Raphael Sbarge

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