10/30/1992. Friday. 88 minutes. Rated PG-13. Video release 7/28/93.
aka: "Paydirt"
Code: TGN 10/1992


A prison psychologist and a group of escapee patients of his fight over suburban buried treasure. Due to confusion over the address, Willis is digging up one basement while the convicts hold the Rutledges hostage next door and dig up their basement.


Writer-director: Bill Phillips.


Jeff Daniels as Willis Embry or Embris (depending on source)
Catherine O'Hara as Jessie Lodge
Hector Elizondo as Norman Rutledge
Rhea Perlman as Lydia Nunn
Judith Ivey as "Peedie" Penelope Diane Rutledge
Harris Yulin as Marvin Boyd
Jonathan Banks as Handsome Harry
Dabney Coleman as Jeffrey Babitt
Chazz Palminteri as Lyle Corrente
Heidi Zeigler as Swan Babitt
Richard Portnow as Marty Rollins
Jeremy Piven as Albert Lodge
William Morgan Sheppard as Trick Bissell


Harry is an escaped convict, was in prison for theft. Carries a gun, but only gets violent with Marvin (fellow convict)—hits him with a shovel to protect Penelope.


Went to college for four months; likes to read. Appreciates home decor. Romantic, passionate, enjoys sexual fantasies. Not usually violent, dislikes violent solutions, but will use violence to defend Penelope.


This film is a lame mish mash of comedy elements, and fails as a film. It was in theatrical release for only about ten days. Despite that, it’s a great show for JB fans. Harry gets a romance and four hot kissing scenes, filmed with the camera in his favor. And the plot, such as it is, has the woman choosing the right guy for a change. Too bad Harry and Penelope get interrupted so often. JB gets lots of smiles, and nice back of hand caresses to Penelope's face. His expression when he is caught taking Penelope's photo is great. JB is very buffed up, too. Many cuts in this film are extremely short. Video really helps—fast forward through the bad bits and freeze-frame the good bits.


Prison clothes, which get progressively dirtier.


"Outlandishly silly... lame… unappealing... no redeeming qualities... unfunny." Variety, 11/9/1992.


"You must've studied in sociology -- criminals have very poor impulse control. I'll bet you're the type that fantasizes about gangsters breaking in here and having their way with you."

"You said, a good body, or a great body?"

"You just don't bash the lady, Marvin!"

"May I call you Penelope?" "At night when I'm falling asleep with my pillow under my arm wishing it was you, in my mind, can I call you Penelope? Can I touch you, Penelope?"

"Penelope, I'm going to go straight for you -- right after we get this money."


Filmed in Los Angeles 6/3 to 8/1/1991.


About 13 minutes throughout movie.


Chazz Palminteri (WG 9/1987, episode 42-46)