I watched the Bluray of Crimewave today. It came out in 1985 and only played in Kansas and Alaska so I never saw it until I saw it on VHS in 1991. I made a copy of the tape and turned that into a DVDr about 10 years ago. I've watched it more than a half dozen times over the years.
Crimewave is directed by Sam Raimi who wrote the script with Ethan and Joel Cohen. Sam was also the producer with Robert Tappert and Bruce Campbell. The guys had just had a fairly good success with The Evil Dead and that got them a $2.5 million chunk of change. They set up in Detroit and had trouble all along the production. Problems with working Union, not something they had had to worry about with The Evil Dead. They had trouble with some of the actors and the stuntmen. Bruce Campbell mentions them on the Commentary.
There was plenty of trouble with studio. Sam and the guys were supposed to have complete control of the film. They did, for a while, but after they went over budget, and beyond the schedule, that went away. Bruce Campbell talks about what a horrible experience they had during the production in the video interview and commentary. Bruce was to play the lead character but Embassy Pictures didn't allow that so Sam gave Bruce the Renaldo role and made that a lot bigger. The studio interfered with the editing and they wanted the framing story added. That was filmed about a year after the principle filming was wrapped.
Raimi cited the experience as one of the least favorite moments of his career. -Wikipedia.
It's got a pretty interesting cast: Louise Lasser, Paul L. Smith, Brion James, Sheree J Wilson, Edward R Pressman, Bruce Campbell, Reed Birney, Antonio Fargas and Emil Sitka. Reed is a hapless security system installer for the Odegard and Trend Security Company. Producer Edward Pressman got asked by Sam to play Reed's boss, Mr Trend, because Sam thought he looked just right for the part. It's Mr Pressman's only role. Louise Lasser plays Mrs Trend.
Mr Trend hires exterminators Brion James and Paul L Smith to kill his partner Mr Odegard when he finds out that Odegard wants to sell the company to Renaldo. The killers do too good a job and both owners perish in a storm of electricity as Brion shocks them to death with his high voltage killing box. Louise sees them as it and they come for her. Reed and Sheree has a rocky night that puts them right between Louise and the killers.
Since I've said I have watched it so many times over the years you probably won't be surprised to find I'm in the camp that finds it hilarious. There's plenty of gags, slapstick and pratfalls to break me up. Plenty of the sets and cars get broken up too. I'll continue to watch the film as long as I can. Glad I picked it up.
There's a nice bunch of extras on the disc. Bruce Campbell does an entertaining commentary and an interview video. He talks about the film and tells people that they need to have their silly hat on. He mentions that kids might like the movie and I know on one little four year old who says it's his favorite movie. There's also interviews with producer Edward R Pressman and Reed Birney. There's a photo gallery and a theatrical trailer.