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  • jterrell14 April 2014
    In March 1989, I was on spring break, staying at my dad's house, when I saw a TV commercial for "She's Out of Control." Although I was a guy, I was fascinated by the idea of a geek who miraculously changes and ends up conquering all. It seemed to me like an underdog story, and I've always liked that kind of story. But upon rushing to the theater on opening night--April 14, 1989--I was surprised to discover that the movie was really about the dad and his obsession over protecting his daughter. Still, I found it enjoyable enough, even with the PG rating.

    Exactly 25 years later, I find myself typing a review after having watched "She's Out of Control" for the second time--on DVD, and on my Xbox One. What compelled me to revisit a movie so notoriously reviled by Siskel and Ebert? I suppose I just wanted to watch again it 25 years to the day (for the perfect timing), and see it from the perspective of a 42-year-old, as opposed to my 17-year-old self in 1989.

    As many others have noted, this movie is really a movie-length sitcom with some mild profanity, and some other PG-rated material. It's mostly harmless, at least for people 10 and older. It doesn't break any new ground or develop its themes in any insightful way, but I found it reasonably entertaining and likable. It's what you call a "family movie," meaning that it tries to appeal to everybody--children, teens, and adults.

    Those of you looking for late 80s nostalgia will be bombarded with music video-inspired editing and closeups, Paula Abdul-choreographed dancing, and Aqua Net-assisted hair. The girls' bedroom, with its George Michael poster, oversized Swatch clock, and Apple IIc, particularly encapsulates the final years of the Pastel Decade. Also, look for appearances by Todd Bridges and Dustin Diamond.

    So, what do I think of it today? Am I any smarter than I was in 1989, two months before my high school graduation? Nah, I'm still stupid--and had a good time being stupid for the second time.

    Exactly 25 years from now--April 14, 2039--I may find myself watching "She's Out of Control" for the THIRD time--in 4K. If IMDb still exists, I'll be sure to let all of you know about it on the review page.

    Happy 25th birthday, "She's Out of Control."
  • daisyduke800031 July 2001
    This is a really, really good movie.It's a great teen flick and it's enjoyable even if you're not a teen. There's no swearing in this movie;they only say b**ch once, that's it. There's no violence, there is however some sex-related talk. Except for that, it's a good clean movie. A great movie for fathers and daughters to watch together. Lots of very '80's hair, clothes,and music!Very funny, very cute, a good choice. I recommend it!
  • If there's one thing to say about the 80's it's that their movies was aimed at about the same kind of audiences. And this movie is no exception.

    Tony Danza plays Doug Simpson, a widowed father who's been raising his 2 daughters pretty much alone since their mother died. And according to him (which I agree with) he's done a pretty good job of it. He pretty regularly gets help from his girlfriend, Janet, played almost flawlessly by Catherine Hicks. His life seems to be perfect and in control. Then he goes on a routine business trip and comes home to find his eldest daughter, Katie, the hottest ticket in town. Doug is in a state of shock and isn't used to guys calling all hours of the night, and Katie coming and going as she pleases. So he seeks help in a psychologist who specializes in father/daughter relationships. But can the doctor help him before Doug does something that he will regret?

    This movie isn't the kind of movie you'd see on an Oscar Ballot but is fun to watch. Tony Danza is perfectly cast as the nervous but loving father, Doug. Ami Dolenz is well cast as Katie. She actually looks like she's having fun playing the character. Of course, who wouldn't enjoy playing a character that everyone thinks is hot and wants to date. Laura Mooney steals every scene she's in as the sarcastic and under-appreciated younger sister Bonnie. Matthew Perry (Friends) has a small part in this movie as one of the guys Katie goes out with.

    It's also interesting to try and guess who exactly Katie is going to end up with in the end.

    If you're in the mood for a sweet, often funny movie, or a fan of any of the cast, then I highly recommend this movie for you.
  • Kinda dated movie. If you didn't grow up then or live during that period as a teen or older you would probably think what a gross bunch of people. Anyway, this was kind of a TV-like movie. Some girl who looks like Tawyna Harding decides to get contact lenses, her hair done, and remove her braces... you know.. to become "beautiful" (like all people with glasses and braces are just hideous). Boys start to notice her. Her dad has a hard time as he is a single dad. The ending had a decent moral premise I guess... but honestly all that sex and sex ed stuff... obsession back then with kids and parents was just that... an obsession. It was blown out of proportion as everyone wanted to break some taboo of talking about sex. So they just over talked it. It was nonsense. It was silly, but fun for those who are going into high school to watch.

    Your belly will ache from laughter after watching this hilarious movie from the 80's. This movie takes me back to my youth. Also this was Tony Danza at the peak of his popularity. Danza does get a little wacky in the movie, but that's part of its charm. There are a lot of funny scenes in this movie including the scenes with that mastermind Dr. Fishbinder and etc. Young Matthew Perry is in it too, but only had a minor role. All in all, this is one of my top favorite movies of all time and really takes me back to my childhood. Don't take it too seriously just let the movie take you back to a happier time and enjoy the laughs!

    Overall rating: 8 out of 10.
  • "She's Out of Control" was actually one of two light comedies released in 1989 regarding overprotective, single fathers and their fifteen year old daughters who have just started dating. The other was "Dream Date," a made-for-TV comedy with Clifton Davis and The Cosby Show's Tempestt Bledsoe. Considering some of the minor characters in "Dream Date" (including Pauley Shore as a brain-dead high school student who was convinced that the father is the devil) and it being predicated upon more slapstick humor than we saw in "She's Out of Control," it is a bit funnier in comparison, although probably geared for the more "wholesome" family film choice. But in the end, there is still something lacking (and probably at my age, I would no longer find it all that funny) in a tale of an obsessive, overbearing father trying to prevent his teenagedaughter from participating in the dating game.

    Be prepared for extra doses of Tony Danza, if you can. Here, he plays Southern California radio-show manager and single dad Doug Simpson, who's eldest daughter, Katie (Ami Dolenz)has just dropped her dorky vices (braces, magnified glasses) and gotten a make over. Now it seems, every boy in town is calling her or showing up at her doorstep to court her. And while this comes as a shock to her father at first, despite the insistence of his girlfriend, Janet (Catherine Hicks) that this is all normal for the girl and in fact, good for her, he is still unconvinced and becomes not only paranoid, but soon enters therapy.

    Doug's therapist, Doctor Fishbinder (Wallace Shawn), decides that his book would serve as a handy guide, which encourages Doug only to intervene into his daughter's dating choices even further. On the one hand this is funny (such as the scenes with him walking in on a party and then befriending her "misunderstood" boyfriend, which winds up costing him his Jaguar), but on the other, the repetition may start to weigh on the viewer as the story becomes insurmountably ridiculous (I'm not sure where Danza was going with the explanation about being involved in the lunch counter sit-ins when he is under the impression that Leroy might have come to pick up his daughter for a date).

    I would have to agree that this movie suffers from being too dated. That the appeal to audiences around the time of this film's release was probably the fashion, the music, even the actors themselves (Ami Dolenz for younger audiences and probably, Tony Danza, before he because more of a pop culture joke), things which are probably very cheesy by today's standards. Yet, I'm sure it is still a favorite among 80s nostalgics (although, I'll pass on this one). In any event, I think this kind of story much better done with Dream Date. Because it was a made-for-TV movie, it had to be sweet and concise.
  • Actually, if only, but I couldn't resist.

    I was condemned to see this flick tonight, and that's an hour and a half of my life I shall never recover. An obvious and clumsy attempt to make Danza's then-current Who's The Boss? series into a theatrical movie, Danza replicates his overprotective father with a popular daughter to a near-pedophilic degree (something that, with more than a bit of irony, the film touches upon).

    The script hits every cliché in the book, from ugly duckling turned into tousled-blonde It Girl, to crackers psychiatrist who turns out not to know anything about his subject, to the lolita in a swimsuit (with amazing lack of support) jiggling in the surf in slow motion, to the string of young punk suitors, to the Recapturing of Youth scene -- complete with candy-red Jag yet -- to the final scene of the younger daughter replicating the same behavior as the wayward lass. The resolution is far too pat, there are a few too many plot holes (excuse me, what orthodontist would pull braces from a minor on the say so of her father's girlfriend?), and surprisingly enough -- given that she loses few opportunities to do so on the 7th Heaven set -- Catherine Hicks is the only principal to avoid shameless overacting.

    In this alleged comedy, there are few smiles, no laughs, and very little that is entertaining or edifying. Give it a miss, unless you're wont to use VHS tapes as kindling for your fireplace.

    3/10, and that's fairly generous.
  • SOOOOOOO cheesy! This is the old cliche about the ugly girl with braces and glasses getting a makeover and suddenly ALL the boys want her. Basically, Dad, who to me is just Tony from Who's the Boss, takes the backseat in her life and this new "hottie" with no personality gets tons of invites on dates, etc, etc. To me, this movie is priceless because it has a high school prom scene, which, when done is the 80s, was just too cool. NO ONE DANCES LIKE THAT! Heehee. I saw this when I was 9 and remember thinking how cool all the clothes looked. I didn't like the stepmom, because she was just too crazy. Basically, the only good thing about this movie is it's a priceless bit o' eighties history and nostalgic. No one can make a movie this simple nowadays without getting laughed out of the director's office. Ah, those were the days....
  • This comment is to the person above who bashed the movie as not being funny and a who's the boss remake... I don't think so.. When I watch this movie I do not think about who's the boss at all. This movie is so good, I've seen it a million times and will continue to watch it over and over. I think the movie was done really well, great music, great characters, a good storyline, and i think every girl dreams of looking like Ami Dolenz in the movie. I think this movie could be one of the 80's classics, it's something that you cant get tired of watching. The only thing is where did Ami Dolenz go? She had a small part in Can't Buy Me Love, and that's the last I've seen of her.
  • If you take yourself seriously, assume the fact that you like Requim For A Dream so that makes you some highly-prolific intellectual with an acquired taste in movies (i.e., pretentious) this movie isn't for you. If you don't take yourself too seriously, and you can appreciate a good light hearted comedy once in a while this movie is for you. Call it what you will-- cheesy, over-the-top, etc., at face value this movie succeeds. Tony Danza does a good job at playing the loving dad, and the rest of the cast does well also. This movie works well mainly, in my opinion, because of the music. From Bobby Vinton's Venus, to the Kinks, this movie exhibits all sorts of music. It's used appropriately and timely. Overall the movie is a fun comedy. Now, some other reviewers, like the guy who posted on July 7 of 2000 and gave it one star, he just basically ripped his review off Ebert (go to and look the film up if you want proof) so his opinion isn't valid. He probably hasn't seen it. Just to reiterate, you don't have to lower your intellectual standards to enjoy this. If the only way you can enjoy a film is if it is labeled as independent and it has unwarranted nudity and absurdity, you might not like this. If you saw Donnie darko and now you talk down to people when speaking about it because you think you've gone to the far ends of the earth to expose yourself to new kinds of film, then you take yourself way to seriously and give yourself too much credit. If you are like me and you enjoy a vast array of films of all types, then you may like this movie. But if you hate good music you might also hate this film.
  • She's Out of Control (1989)

    1/2 (out of 4)

    Doug Simpson (Tony Danza) has the perfect life with a great girlfriend (Catherine Hicks) and two great daughters. All of this changes when his 15-year-old daughter Katie (Ami Dolenz) gets a makeover and starts getting attention from the boys. Pretty soon dad is living in constant fear that she's going to lose her virginity.

    You know, I'm going to pretend that the makers of SHE'S OUT OF CONTROL weren't trying to be creepy when they made this so-called comedy. After all, a father obsessed with his daughter's sexuality could be seen as creepy and it's easy to see why some would find the material here but I'm going to be nice and think that they simply wanted to make a movie about the stress of being a father but that it spun way out of control. SHE'S OUT OF CONTROL is a pretty awful movie either way.

    There are all sorts of problems with this film but the biggest is the fact that I didn't laugh a single time. For a comedy this is without question one of the worst that I've ever seen and I honestly can't think of too many that didn't have a single laughs. What's really shocking about this movie is how awful Danza is as he really doesn't give any sort of performance and he certainly can't bring this character to life. Even worse is the fact that he can work for a single laugh. Hicks, Dolenz and Wallace Shawn are good in their roles but they're given absolutely nothing to do.

    What's so strange about this movie is the fact that it basically ends with the dad stalking his daughter in order to see if she loses her virginity. I'm sure most fathers fear this moment but I'm really not sure this film handled it the correct way. The entire film has a very weird tone to it and this is probably even more apparent due to the fact that there aren't any laughs. The only saving grace here is a great soundtrack with some early rock and roll tunes. Outside of that, SHE'S OUT OF CONTROL is one of the worst of its kind.
  • Lame comedy that stars Tony Danza as a widowed father who freaks out when his daughter (Ami Dolenz, yes the daughter of former Monkee Micky) sports a new look. This is just an obnoxious rehash of "Who's the Boss," in which Danza also starred as an overprotective father, but in a more intelligent way. This film does very little to entertain anyone with its kiddy humor, and only people who think Ami Dolenz is attractive will be amused.

    1 out of 5
  • Warning: Spoilers
    She's Out of Control is a fun film, with a surprisingly effective Tony Danza performance.

    The beach scene's classic. Unfortunately Ami Dolenz's character's a little underwritten and the ending's stock standard.
  • I saw "She's Out of Control" when I was a kid, every Saturday Night featured a comedy, and in the early 90's, they were all from the 80's. I can say I saw at least three films with each of Richard Pryor, John Candy, Dudley Moore, Chevy Chase, Dan Ayrkryod or Gene Wilder before I could see one of Pacino, De Niro or Nicholson. Those were the days, I never missed a Saturday comedy, and "She's Out of Control" was twice promising, the second value was that it starred Tony Danza and "Who's the Boss" was still airing. That was an offer I couldn't refuse.

    And I enjoyed the film. To my defense, I was only ten. I saw the film when I was twice the same age and well, I enjoyed it in the sense that it reminded me of the good old days… and that I could spot Matthew Perry in his baby-faced pre-Friends years, and well, it was a time without the Internet, without any Netflix, where VHS stores still existed (how would I have gotten the film otherwise?) so the film could take two hours of my life. You see where I'm coming from?

    Indeed, a few years later, as an IMDb member, I went to the film's board, one of the threads gave me a link to the then Siskel & Ebert's website and I could have a taste of their own opinions. The film is infamous for having made Ebert's Most Hated List and for having encouraged Siskel to quit his job if it wasn't for the providential "Say Anyhing", seen the same day. Not only did they hate the film but they hated the experience of watching the film, and hated the insult on people's intelligence that it represented. I never saw the film again… but curiosity won over me and I finally saw it to check how bad it was.

    Well, I don't think it's bad as much as it's wrong. Wrong is the right word, and even when it grabs a few timid laughs, they're still addressed to rather creepy situation. Ebert and Siskel pointed out that the father's obsession with his daughter was driven to very pervert corners, especially when he first sees her steeping down the stairs with that short white dress and the "Venus" music, there's a level of eroticization of a teenager that ceases to be disturbing when you know the actress was 20, but in the context, she's 15, it doesn't get better.

    The problem isn't that the father's obsession is creepy, but in the fact that the script actually proves him right in a twisted way. Once she becomes pretty (of course, all she had to do was get rid of braces and glasses, typical ugly duckling makeover Hollywood cliché), she collects boyfriends like heels from a repulsive buyer. I used to find the first montage of boyfriends lining up on the door funny, now it's not even funny, it's creepy, especially when it gets to the point of a father needing to make an appointment to see his girl. There might be at one small moment of truth within the chaos, when Katie admits it's a phase because she never got used to appeal to boys and when her father warns her about using her pretty face as a weapon.

    There could be a powerful moment like when Elizabeth Taylor says in "Butterfield 8": "Face it Ma, I was the slut of all time". The ugly 'word' is never uttered but it doesn't fool us as Katie breaks every record on that level. But the film never attacks the core of the problem, it never even tries to handle her attitude as a problem, it makes it the Dad's problem. And all it takes is to try to win his daughter's trust, get along with the boyfriends (well-played actually). So the film involves a subplot with some therapist and writer played by Wallace Shawn. He gives all the proper advice for Doug but even by suspending my disbelief, the film surrendered to the idiotic formula. There's a moment where Katie asks her Dad about the "right time" and all Doug does is quoting a whole paragraph from the book.

    That's symptomatic of a desperate screenplay that would rather treat its material in sitcom fashion than sacrifice feeble attempts of laughs in order to provide a real father-and-daughter moment. And even the quoting made no sense once you get to know Doug, he's creepy but he's not an imbecile, he would know his daughter enough not to give her a church sermon. I have an unlimited patience with movies with nostalgic value but I don't like these cringe-worthy moments. I pointed out similar flaws in another 80's flick "Like Father, Like Son" where the father started behaving like a kid when impersonating a teenager.

    The moment that got on the critics' nerve used to be the one I remembered the most, Amy Dolenz running in a way it might have inspired "Baywatch" and Danza looking at the looks of men, as if they were indeed obsessed by her body. The music playing is the "Oh Yeah" from Ferris Bueller. This part is all wrong again. It is wrong for Danza to sexualize her daughter. It is wrong for the movie to show that he might be right to feel that way, and it is wrong that she'd think there's nothing wrong with attitude, yet it's all plain wrong.

    So, how to put it? "She's Out of Control" reminds me of that "hang in there" cat in the poster, the film is the cat, the rope is nostalgia. But for nostalgia's sake, I'd rather remember Tony Danza as Tony Micelli than Doug Simpson, father of teenager Katie (Ami Dolenz in the movie), so this is one instance where I'd let the cat fall.
  • I fell in love with this movie when I saw it. Its very entertaining and really quite funny. It has they pizazz to it. I loved how funny the scenes were with Doctor Fishbinder and Doug. It is a worried single dad taken to the extreme, with hilarious and heartfelt moments the whole way through. And with the mix of the jewel lover girlfriend everything gets completely whirled up. Probably the funniest part in this movie is Timothy, and how Doug tries to find as much dirt as he can on him. The one thing I thought was strange was how he tried to find all that dirt and bought the camera and everything and he never used it. This movie is a keeper and a full out fun show.
  • chatykat24 July 2002
    Awesome 80s fun! This film was a delightful piece of work, about a dad worried about his daughter played by Tony Danza and the daughter played by Ami Dolenz and Catherine Hicks (7th Heaven). This is a good family film for everybody.
  • I didn't mind this film. It's one of those films that are good to watch really late at night, when you really just want to wind down. It is pretty silly, but it has some funny moments. Ami Dolenz can't act very well, but in the role she is playing it really doesn't matter. Dana Ashbrook is very amusing as the leather clad boyfriend from hell. But Matthew Perry is not particularly convincing as the all too perfect Yale college boy. Tony Danza seems to be treating the whole exercise like an extended version of a Who's the Boss? episode, which is probably why he was given the part. Although it's not very original, and similar theme films have done it much better, it's still not a bad effort. At least it was not boring.
  • The stage curtains open ...

    To begin with, this movie is titled incorrectly. It should be "Dad's Out Of Control" - because he is way overboard compared to what she is doing. Tony Danza stars as a single father, Doug Simpson, a rock radio programmer, who is challenged with raising two daughters. But when his oldest daughter, 15-year-old Katie, transforms from glasses, piggy tails and sneakers to contacts, hairspray, lipstick and high heels - it is almost too much for Dad to take. Suddenly, every boy in town arrives on his doorstep to date Katie.

    The fact that Dad is starting to view his own daughter as a sex object and is worried that she is going to lose her virginity in situations beyond his control gives this film a "creep" factor. I don't think this was the intentions of the filmmakers, but it still plays out that way. Doug does have is own love interest, a woman he is in love with - but his obsession with his daughter's transformation is what prompts him to propose to his fiance. Then when the beach scene comes into full play, it is just wrong - as his daughter comes bounding out of the water like Bo Derek in "10".

    Other movies have explored this area with much better success - such as the "Father Of The Bride" movies, especially the 1991 version with Steve Martin. There's a scene where he notices her new fiance inching his hand up her leg and he sneers - and then of course, the classic line as they are leaving for a night on the town when he says, "Be sure to fasten your condom. Seat belt! I meant seat belt!". There there is the scene in "Blended" where Adam Sandler plays the father seeing his own 15-year-old daughter transform and blossom into a beautiful young lady - but again, handled with much more dignity.

    Of course, there is the 2018 film, "Blockers", where three different parents carry on the same obsession to prevent their daughters from losing their virginity on Prom Night - not one of my favorite films. It actually rated worse with me at only 2 stars than this movie does. At least in this movie, Tony Danza doesn't resort to butt chugging to get to his daughter.

    But, even if you took away the creep factor, this is still a pretty bad movie. It is an editing mess, acting is non-existent (except for his psychiatrist, Dr. Fishbinder played by a funny Wallace Shawn), and there are some very over-the-top and unbelievable moments - ie: letting a completely, strange boy drive his Jaguar ... in a drag race? Yeah, sure.

    I can't recommend this one. It's a shame too, because I always liked Tony Danza - but this movie is one to forget.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    If you really want to see a movie about a father who won't accept his daughter is growing up, then see 'Father of the Bride' (Danza also did this on an episode of 'Who's the Boss?'). This is a mediocre effort. I could use the word 'extremely', but the movie does have its moments. But mostly this plays like an episode of a sitcom that's been on the air for several years and has run out of ideas. Catherine Hicks is the only one who turns in a believable performance. And I did not believe, for a second, any of the scenes that take place in the psychiatrist's office. Yes, Danza's character needs help alright, but the acting between these two didn't convince me he was really getting it. Danza's hamming it up here, and a couple scenes towards the end are predictable. If there really is anybody out of control, it's the father.

    ** out of ****
  • As a fellow Texan of Tony Danza, I have a natural affinity for movies about life on a farm. This movie does not disappoint. Danza's performance is one for the ages. I would say the ages of 6 through ten years old. Although I loved the movie, I had a hard time following the complex story-line. Danza's portrayal of a father trying to control his daughter (hence the clever movie title) ranks up there with Olivier, Brando and Kutcher. How this movie did not get Oscar consideration is beyond me. I would warn that Danza's character does launch into profanity laced tirades quite often. This is a great movie for the whole family. I have two movies that I play endlessly for my two month old: The Godfather Two and She's Outta Control. Enrich your lives, enrich your worlds and enrich Tony Danza's pocket, buy this movie. I prefer the video version over the DVD version because of the better audio and visual qualities.

    Thoughts and prayers out there who do not see this gem!
  • I saw this movie on tape around the time it came out and i still remember it as a very pleasant surprise little movie.Danza is pretty good in it,the situations are predictable but lots of fun.A big step above the rest is Wallace Shawn as Dr.Fishbinder,one of the funniest characters i have ever seen.The guy is unbelievable in this movie i could have watched a whole series with him.See for yourself.
  • If you're a big Tony Danza fan like I am. Then this is your movie. Tony is awesome in this humorous movie. Danza's facial also will have you on the floor laughing. Catherine Hicks also gives a great performance. All in all its a fun movie for you or the family to watch. On a scale of 1 - 10 i give it a 10. Hey why not? its a fun enjoyable movie.
  • jaws!6 April 1999
    She's Out of Control is a fun movie. It's entertaining, and it's funny. The plot for this movie is good. The people in this movie are fun to watch.All in all entertaining stuff. I give it *** out of ****
  • SnoopyStyle15 September 2017
    Radio station manager Doug Simpson (Tony Danza) gets into a fight and thrown out of the window. The cops interrogate him. The station is fading. He's a widower raising daughters Katie (Ami Dolenz) and Bonnie. Katie turns 15 and is adorkable. Richie is her equally dorky neighbor boyfriend. While Doug is out of town, she gets a makeover from his girlfriend Janet Pearson (Catherine Hicks). Suddenly, she's hot and every guy notices. Let the parade of guys begin. Doug seeks help from Dr. Herman Fishbinder (Wallace Shawn) and his book.

    I imagine this would be the fate of 80s teen movies if John Hughes didn't exist. It's cheesy and father-knows-best is overwhelmed. Even the drag race and burger place hearkens back to the 50s in their styles. Danza is not able to get beyond his TV personality. It is unrelentingly unfunny. It takes no risks other than Katie's age. Dolenz is actually 19 as she plays the 15 year old. There is a Lolita factor in a bad way as she does the slow-motion Baywatch running. There is also a young Matthew Perry who comes in during the second half. It's all pretty bad. Nobody actually needs to see this.