When Jack Butler (Michael Keaton) loses his job at an auto factory, he expects to quickly find another. But instead, his wife Caroline (Teri Garr) starts working for an ad agency and Jack ends up taking care of the house and kids. He soon runs afoul of shopping etiquette, a voracious vacuum cleaner, and he can't even drop his kids off at school properly. He starts losing his pride and letting himself go. He stops shaving, drinks at all hours, and watches soap operas. And not only does a predatory divorcée (Ann Jillian) have her eye on him, Caroline's new boss (Martin Mull) has more than business on his mind. Will their marriage survive? What makes Mr. Mom work isn't its role-reversal premise, but its clever off-the-main-plot scenes like the obstacle course at the company picnic, where a footrace with swim fins is set to a variation on the theme to Chariots of Fire; a poker game using discount coupons for money; or a traumatic, soap-opera-influenced dream Jack has when he realizes his life is going down the toilet. This is the first starring role for Michael Keaton, who went on to star in Beetlejuice and Batman; he makes the most of both its comic and sentimental side. The script, incidentally, is written by John Hughes, who later went on to write and direct The Breakfast Club and Home Alone. --Bret Fetzer
I understand that you little guys start out with your woobies and you think they're great... and they are, they are terrific. But pretty soon, a woobie isn't enough. You're out on the street trying to score an electric blanket, or maybe a quilt. And the next thing you know, you're strung out on bedspreads Ken. That's serious.