Somehow everything in my life reverts back to Batman, KISS, and Pro Wrestling. In this instance, wrestling motivated me to want to see Moving back in 1988. If not for the pre-release coverage in WWF magazine, I would not have been as remotely interested in seeing the Richard Pryor comedy. Thanks to New Jersey’s “Walking Condominium,” King Kong Bundy’s role in the film, I suddenly became unusually geared up to see it. At that time I was just a kid and it would be a long time before I started obsessively writing little globs of inconsequential New Jersey drivel on the Internet. A private goes through boot camp to advance in the ranks of the Army, while other people let WWF Magazine be the handbook of their life.
In Moving, Richard Pryor stars as Arlo, an engineer living in New Jersey who loses his job and has to take a new one in Boise, Idaho. There’s one tiny stipulation though, his family has to move with him. Throughout the film, there’s appearances by Rodney Dangerfield, Dana Carvey, and Jay and Silent Bob’s favorite lead singer…Morris Day! Terrorizing Arlo is his neighbor, Frank, played by Randy Quaid, who is a little more sadistic than his trademark role of Cousin Eddie. This time Quaid plays a creep with a brain tumor instead of a metal plate in his head. There’s wacky hijinks galore as Arlo attempts to relocate his family and start his new job.
After noticing that Richard Pryor has starred in 2 films set in New Jersey, it lead me to coin the term Pryor Points. Feel free to use the term to commend an actor, singer, band, writer, etc. who involves themselves in a Jersey related project, for example, “Writer Robert Siegel and director Darren Aronofsky scored major Pryor Points for setting their film, The Wrestler, in New Jersey.” Moving was unabashed about it’s Jersey setting as you can tell by it’s tagline: On the New Jersey Turnpike, no one can hear you scream. I’ll attest to that, but only if you are driving with your windows closed and nobody is in the car with you.
I’m positive I’ll draw some flack for this, but Moving beats Brewster’s Millions any day. Sure, Moving might be accused of being sillier fare than Brewster’s Millions, but it’s a comedy dammit! Did I mention that motherf-ckin’ King Kong Bundy has a role in the film? It was worth bringing up again because knowing is half the battle, and awareness might save you from being smashed by an unexpected Bundy Avalanche. How could such a big cuddly Hawaiian-shirted teddy bear do such a thing?
You know the shit’s gonna hit the fan when Bundy makes his angry face.