Throw Momma from the Train (1987)

PG-13   |    |  Comedy, Crime, Thriller

Throw Momma from the Train (1987) Poster

A bitter ex-husband wants his former spouse dead. A put-upon momma's boy wants his mother dead. Who will pull it off?




  • Billy Crystal and Kim Greist in Throw Momma from the Train (1987)
  • Billy Crystal and Danny DeVito in Throw Momma from the Train (1987)
  • Billy Crystal and Danny DeVito in Throw Momma from the Train (1987)
  • Billy Crystal and Rob Reiner in Throw Momma from the Train (1987)
  • Danny DeVito in Throw Momma from the Train (1987)
  • Danny DeVito and Anne Ramsey in Throw Momma from the Train (1987)

See all photos

Get More From IMDb

For an enhanced browsing experience, get the IMDb app on your smartphone or tablet.

Get the IMDb app

Reviews & Commentary

Add a Review

User Reviews

20 June 2004 | eddy-28
A fun black comedy/thriller
Throw Momma from the Train, could best be described as a newer version of Hitchcock's "Strangers on a Train". Stu Sliver's script was creative and very darkly comic.

Danny DeVito stars (and also directs) as Owen, a sort of dim-witted writing student who lives with his monstrous mother (Anne Ramsey). Owen's writing teacher, Larry (Billy Crystal) is having trouble with his writing career because his wife (Kate Mulgrew) stole his first book and made it her own bestseller and lives the highlife in Hawaii. After Owen constantly annoys Larry for days about his first story, he wrote from class, Larry suggests that Owen see a Hitchcock movie in order to write the perfect murder mystery novel. Owen then gets the idea from "Strangers on a Train" that he will go to Hawaii and murder Larry's wife, while Larry will kill his mother. But Larry has the motive, and with the police coming after him, Larry now has the opportunity to kill off the meanest old lady, he's ever seen, but realizes that she is harder to get rid of than both he and Owen thought.

Throw Momma from the Train, I think is a fun comic adventure, both Danny DeVito and Bill Crystal are funny, while Anne Ramsey's Oscar-nominated role of Momma is hysterically frightening. There are a lot of laughs in this film, especially the classic "One Hundred Girls I'd Like to Fork" story. Kim Griest, Annie Ross and Bruce Kirby also star, with Rob Reiner, Oprah Winfrey and Danny DeVito's own father in law, Philip Perlman make cameos. This is a good example of classic black comedy.

Metacritic Reviews

Critic Reviews

Did You Know?


On the American DVD cover of the movie, the poster of the movie is altered in which Larry is seen smiling. In the actual movie poster itself, Larry doesn't smile.


Larry: Owen, you gotta get it through your thick head: I may be a lot of things, but I'm not a killer.
Owen: You don't have to blow her brains out or anything.
Larry: Thank you, that takes the pressure right off.
Owen: She's old. She's got a bad ticker. All you gotta do is jerk...


(reversed images) When Larry first follows Momma on the train she turns the corner and pushes the "push" sign to open the door. When she is shown coming through it, the push sign's letters are reversed. Next, just after Larry and Owen have pulled Momma back up on the train, Owen is hugging her. When Larry asks her if she is OK the push sign is on the left side of the door. Then Momma kicks him and the push sign is on the right with the letters reversed as he starts to lose his balance. Then they show Owen get up and say "Larry," after which Larry is shown falling off the train and the push sign has moved back to the left side with the letters correct again.

Crazy Credits

The credit for Assistant Sound Editor Robert Martel has a gap in the vertical stroke of the L.

Alternate Versions

When aired on Comedy Central, the following alterations were made:

  • The title of the book Larry announces to the class is now called "100 Girls I'd like to Boing" instead of 'pork'
  • Whenever Larry would call his wife a 'slut' it was changed to 'sleaze'.
  • A scene, right after Larry dismisses class because he has a headache in his eye, that was deleted from the video but is present now is where Owen meets up with Larry in the parking lot and asks why he didn't read the book.
  • A scene where Owen and Larry meet right after Owen calls and asks why Larry didn't like his book. They were talking under a street lamp before they were sitting outside the grocery store.
  • A scene with Larry at the club he said he was at while Margaret's "murder" took place.
  • A scene of Larry and Beth camping out after Larry was talking to Rob Reiner where Beth had a copy of Margaret's book, which Larry took a strong dislike to.


Written by
James Kaholokula


Plot Summary

Synopsis (WARNING: Spoilers)


Comedy | Crime | Thriller

Box Office


$14,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$7,318,878 13 December 1987

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:


Contribute to this page

What to Watch: December's Movie and TV Picks

Looking for something new to watch in December? Here are some picks to fill your Watchlist.

Get some picks

Around The Web


Powered by ZergNet

More To Explore

Search on