Raising Arizona is a wacky, offbeat action comedy by producer Ethan and director Joel Coen, two brothers who popped out of nowhere with the low-budget murder mystery Blood Simple (1984) and later turned out the gangster epic Miller’s Crossing (1990).
Hi McDunnough and Ed (Edwina) meet in the Arizona state prison. Hi (Nicolas Cage) is a no-good antisocial crook – prone to “rambunctious behaviour” – who is in and out of the slammer so much he finally marries Ed (Holly Hunter), the lady cop who fingerprints him.
His lawless days behind him, Hi dreams of being a father but biology (Ed is infertile) keeps them childless.
They can’t adopt because of his criminal record, so Hi and Ed decide to use their criminal know-how to steal one of the quintuplets born to a tycoon named – you got it – Nathan Arizona.
It’s not Ozzie and Harriet. It’s more like Bonnie and Clyde doing a Pampers commercial, as the new parents shop for baby in a getaway car.
It’s cockeyed fun, with an amazing cast of characters that includes two escaped cons who get their inside tips from a cellmate who was once undersecretary to Richard Nixon, and a grenade-throwing, Harley-riding bounty hunter called the “warthog from Hell” (Randall “Tex” Cobb).
Edwina ‘Ed’ McDunnough
Nathan Arizona Sr
Randall “Tex” Cobb
Nathan Arizona Jr
T J Kuhn
Lynne Dumin Kitei