The Incredible Shrinking Woman
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She was an ordinary housewife who gave so much … and got so little.
Comedy legend Lily Tomlin stars in the effervescent 1981 comedy The Incredible Shrinking Woman. Exposed to a heady mix of household chemicals, Pat Kramer (Tomlin) contracts a strange side effect: She begins to shrink! Baffling doctors, Pats diminishing size starts to really bring her down … until her story captures the hearts of the American people and the attention of a sinister group of scientists bent on world domination. Getting out of this predicament while still taking care of her family will be no small feat!
Also starring Charles Grodin (Midnight Run), Ned Beatty (Deliverance, Homicide: Life On The Street), and Tomlins fellow Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In alumnus Henry Gibson, and featuring makeup master Rick Baker (King Kong, Star Wars) as Sidney the gorilla, The Incredible Shrinking Woman is a smart little comedy with big laughs.
NEW 2017 High-Definition Transfer
NEW - A Conversation with Actress Lily Tomlin and Writer/Executive Producer Jane Wagner
NEW Interview with Director Joel Schumacher
NEW Interview with Cinematographer and Visual Effects Supervisor Bruce Logan
NEW Audio interview with Composer Suzanne Ciani
NEW - On Location: Now and Then Featurette
“Edith Ann” Deleted Scene
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These Vault Series DVD's have a few drawbacks - First, WHICH cut of the movie have they utilized? A small, yet fun scene in which Tomlin appears as one of her staple characters, the little girl Edith Ann was cut from this DVD release. It was apparently used in the Television cut of the film (I saw this film countless times on HBO, so I recall that moment.) Sadly, one might think with a "COLLECTOR'S VERSION" of the film, that a more complete version of the film would be made available to the audiences that demanded it. There is also no menu, bonus features. Just pop it in and the film plays - for the price, this was a disappointment.
Secondly, this DVD is only playable in PLAY ONLY DVD players. If you want to watch it on a PC or, if like me, you have a DVD/VCR recorder, you are out of luck. I understand the necessity of copy protecting the films, but other DVD's have that protection, and I can play them on every machine I own. I wish , since this was an AMAZON exclusive, they had at least made a disclaimer of this information in the product description. I ordered a few of these other collector's and Vault series films before I was aware of their limited playing capacity - I wish I'd known.
What we have here is a story loosely (and I mean loosely!) based on Richard Matheson's story of The Incredible Shrinking Man (excellent read!) with the adjustments being it's a woman this time, Pat Kramer, a mom, with two kids and a dog and a Hispanic maid and a husband (Charles Grodin) who's in the advertising business. After testing a new perfume (Sex Pot) and accidentally spilling it on her, Pat begins to shrink. After extensive testing, it is discovered that Pat is reducing in size due to some anomaly and the extensive use of various chemicals from hair dye to laundry detergent to hand lotion. From there she begins the transformation from loving mom to recluse living in a doll house. There is definitely a shot at consumerism throughout the entire movie.
The problems are that 1981 was a long time ago, so it is a bit dated. The story is rushed. The characters (even those that Tomlin made hilarious in her stand-up routines) aren't given much time to develop and are therefore extraneous. Grodin's husband character is mewling and silly and kinda annoying. They don't reveal what has happened to Pat on The Mike Douglas Show because Grodin's boss (Ned Beatty) is begging them not to disillusion the American Buying Public. Whatever. Overall, I wasn't impressed now. When I was 11? Yeah. Like I said, that was a long time ago. The other thing that bothered me was the transfer to DVD. It was awful. It looked like someone shot this entire movie on cellphone. You'd expect any company to clean up the images when they digitize any movie, but that didn't happen here. I gave The Incredible Shrinking Woman 3 stars, probably due in large part to the nostalgia factor. Otherwise, I probably won't be watching it again any time soon. One of those Joel Schumacher movies (like Batman & Robin) that I'd just as soon forget about. Matheson must have been fuming if he ever saw this.