"Joel, don't you have anything better to do than psychoanalyze a bunch of robots?" Apparently not in this hilarious installment of MST3K, in which Joel Hodgson and the robots of the Satellite of Love deconstruct this starc... more »hed and stiff juvenile delinquent drama with everything from art projects to a giant mobile representing the hero's roiling subconscious. Square high school kid Jimmy is on trial for murder in this cautionary drama told in flashback, in which we learn all about this nice boy driven to lies, crime, and the arms of a nightclub floozy by a negligent father, an alcoholic mother, and his own utter stupidity. The film's cheesy nightclub number inspires Joel and the bots to put on their own version: Gypsy lip-synchs the lyrics while the other three pop in and out of costume to play the entire audience. "Seriously, Joel, who would you accuse?" --Sean Axmaker« less
One the funniest, most charming episodes with Joel as host
Ryan Harvey | Los Angeles, CA USA | 03/12/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This DVD from Rhino offers up one the funniest -- and most charming -- episodes of the legendary TV show "Mystery Science Theater 3000," where they take on a 1944 drama/gangster movie/message flick called, "I Accuse My Parents." There are few episodes of the show I recommended higher for all-around quality.For those of you unfamiliar with "Mystery Science Theater 3000," (MST3K for short) it is a ninety-minute show featuring a silhouette of a man and two robots (Tom Servo and Crow T. Robot) in movie theater seats projected in front of a bad movie. The hosts provide hysterical, satiric, and culturally-savvy wisecracks to accompany the movie. The episodes also includes sketches and songs and adds up to some of the most hilarious comedy you will ever see."I Accuse My Parents" is episode #507, from the last days of Joel Hodgson's run as host. Although the movie itself is actually not that bad, this episode comes at point in the show's development when the writers and performers were at the peak of the powers, and the result is one of the most hilarious episodes, and one that really grows on you with its sense of warm parody. It's a good episode for newcomers as well, since the film is average enough so that its awfulness doesn't distract from the wisecracks. (I've noticed that when I show an episode of the show to a friend who has never seen it before, the worse the movie being parodied is, the more my friend focuses on the movie instead of the hosts. This, therefore, is a good "training" episode.)The camaraderie between the cast is quite wonderful here, and the warm, jocular style of the Joel years is at its strongest. After Mike Nelson took over as host (a few episodes later), the comedy style became more satiric and antagonistic toward the film. I love both hosts, but there is something rather magical and pleasant about the comedy of Joel's stint as host, and this episode displays that style perfectly. It is one of quintessential Joel Hodgson episodes.The movie is a competently shot `B' programmer from low-budget studio PRC. Our hero is Jimmy, a really stupid high school graduate who has to get a job at a shoe store despite his skills at essay writing (he won an essay content and mentions it endlessly). While lying to impress a girl, Jimmy idiotically ends up getting into debt and having to go to work as a courier for a gangster, while he also romances the gangster's girl Kitty (played by actress Mary Beth Hughes, who also appears in another MST3K episode, "Last of the Wild Horses.") Well, pretty soon our poor fool is in trouble with the law and the mob and on the run. And when it all explodes in his face, whom does he accuse? Yep, the title gives it away: His Parents! And why? Because they drink and argue. See, it's all their fault.What makes this episode so dang funny is not that the film is particularly rotten looking or the acting is awful, but because the film's premise and main character are so stupid. The hosts lance into the characters at every point: Jimmy's incessant lying ("I liberated France while you were out dancing"), Jimmy's constant bragging about winning an essay constant ("Welcome to the Annual Essay Awards Ceremony!") his alcoholic parents who keep throwing money at him ("I'm up here with the D.T.s, honey! Would you get the yellow lizard out of the bathroom?"), Jimmy's rank stupidity ("Sir, I just don't get the holy spirit. Is it a bird?"), and the extremely obvious gangster organization ("Organized crime, please hold...organized crime, please hold...). This is a very `character'-driven episode, and it's hilarious. There's also some great sketches between movie watching. In one sketch, Joel and the Robots psychoanalyze Jimmy to show that more than just `drunk folks' are behind his problems. (Crow, or course, determines that Jimmy is just stupid.)This DVD is a laugh riot, and a quintessential Joel episode. It feels like plunking down on the couch and watching a film with your best buddies; I think that's the main charm of the Joel years of the show. Newcomers and old fans alike will want this classic. (There are absolutely no extras on the DVD, however, but the episode is such a gem, it doesn't matter.)"
The Blame Game
Kelly Dillman | Pittsburgh, PA | 03/12/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"OK, this story's about Jimmy. At the start he seems to be a nice, smart, well-liked kid, who, for someone who looks like he's in his twenties, does real well in high school. But, as it turns out, Jimmy also has a real knack for lying and doing shady errands for his girlfriend's (Kitty) other boyfriend (mobster Charlie). And the whole reason he resorts to this life of crime is because his parents have a bigger interest in spending time at Jack Taylor's house with their good friend Jim Beam instead of spending time with Jimmy.
This episode is one of my favorites. Joel and the 'bots are so "on", that even Kitty's songs, which when seen in their original state would be mind-numbingly unbearable, are hilarious enough to rewind and watch again before continuing with the rest of the show. The movie provides so much material to lampoon that the time just flies by while watching it. And just when you think it may be slowing down and getting a little dull, the character (and what a character!) of Al Frazier comes along to give the guys enough ammo to easily fill the last 20 minutes of the movie.
My experience has been that it's best to start newbies out with Mitchell, but when I'm not sure what I want to watch I always turn to I Accuse My Parents. And it provides a great alternative stress reliever. Did you burn tonight's dinner, lose your job, or get your hand slammed in a door? Forget swearing, just accuse your parents! It's fun!"
My couch got soiled but I don't mind....
Kelly Dillman | 01/17/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I have most all of the MST3K videos and this is the one we reach for the most. Not a 3 second interval can pass without us howling in laughter. This is my absolute favorite episode hands down because it is overflowing with the razor-sharp sarcasm Joel and the bots do so well. Tom Servo's opening credit song is rewind worthy and you'll be singing it to yourself after the movie is over. The host segments are off the scale funny. I hate over-hyping but I'M NOT! If you love MST3K and haven't seen this one, you HAVE to. HAVE TO. You'll wet yourself and maybe accuse your own parents!"
Go ahead, accuse your parents! It's fun!
Daniel Jolley | Shelby, North Carolina USA | 11/11/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Episode 507, I Accuse My Parents, is a great example of the preachy melodramas that the MST3K gang ripped into gleefully before they moved to that other network that would not let the guys stray too far from science fiction movies. I would not call this a classic episode, but it?s certainly very entertaining. Jim is a goofy kid who blames all of his problems on his parents. Sure, his mom is a lush and his father is a cold fish also known to slosh around in the bottom of the bowl, but the kid seems to have a good head on his shoulders?at first. Unfortunately, Jim?s first place finish in an action-packed school essay contest seems to be the peak of his intellectual career. When his teachers want to meet the mother who inspired such a baseball and apple pie essay in praise of family life, Jim?s thrilling victory is turned into deep shame when his mother stumbles in to the meeting as drunk as a fish. Only now do Jim?s emotional problems (and stupidity) begin to come out into the open. Having lied about his family life for years, he begins to lie about basically everything. After managing to start a career in the lucrative shoe sales business, he meets up with a night club singer named Kitty. Soon he is lying to her about his family and throwing money around trying to impress her. Having no money to start with, he starts running odd jobs for Kitty?s shady boss (who also happens to love Kitty). Too stupid to realize what he is doing, Jim finds himself smack dab in a life of crime. After making countless stupid mistakes, he justifies everything by accusing his parents. Yes, it is all the fault of the parents who gave him everything he wanted but didn?t love him enough?how can he be blamed for doing odd jobs for his Mafia boss and lying like Rip Van Winkle in the mountains and pretending to be a big shot in front of his girlfriend?This movie is just a morality play. Ostensibly aimed at parents, its message is actually one of lying and passing the buck for troubled youths. It actually features three musical numbers, which Joel and the guys manage to pull us through with their typical acerbic comments. Melodramas like this just begged to be riffed, and the gang steps right up to the plate and knocks out a few extra base hits with this one. They also manage to make a horribly boring short, The Truck Farmer, bearable. The quality of the skits is also pretty high this time around. One of them features the infamous Tom Servo nude scene, while another gem has Joel and the Bots performing one of the snappy musical numbers from the movie. This video ranks above average on the old laugh meter and should definitely be a part of any MST fan?s collection."
mrliteral | 06/07/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Mystery Science Theater 3000 has always been one of my favorite TV series. Even in later years, when the non-movie material (the short subjects and invention exchange) faded away, the movies themselves were always a hoot. Although usually focusing on cheesy science fiction and horror movies, this episode shows that any sort of bad movie serves as prime fodder for the MST3K crew.The main feature (following a short on truck farming that features no trucks) is a cautionary tale about bad parenting. When their accusing son can't find love at home, he takes up with a nightclub singer with a heart of gold and a mobster boyfriend. Through events that are more a result of naivete (despite winning an essay contest, he is not overly bright), he eventually winds up on the run and taken in by a kindly restaurant owner. In the end, however, all works out, and his parents, accused by their son and lectured to by a judge, are fated to turn their hedonistic lives around.Since this is MST3K, the movie's story is purely incidental, and only an excuse to make jokes. The one-liners fly by quickly, and even if some miss, there are always a dozen more that hit. As an opportunity to squeeze a little bit of virtue out of a really bad movie, this is a success."