Far From Home (1989) from Tuna and Johnny Web (Uncle Scoopy; Greg Wroblewski)

Tuna's notes in white


Far from Home (1989) stars a 14 year old Drew Barrymore as the daughter of divorced parents. She is on vacation with her dad, visiting National Parks (not  her idea of fun), and is due to return home to LA for her 14th birthday, but gets stuck in a tiny Nevada town due to a gas shortage. She and her father end up renting a trailer from a very obnoxious Susan Tyrell (aka Susan Tyrrell) for the night.

Drew is drawn to Tyrell's son, until he tries to rape her. Tyrell is electrocuted when someone throws a fan into her bath. Her son is the likely suspect, but that would be too easy an answer.  


DVD info from Amazon

  • bare bones: no widescreen; no features


  • Barrymore shows lots of cleavage (an amazing amount for  a 14 year old) throughout the film, but during the attempted rape and after, she is in a transparent wet t-shirt.
  • We see Tyrell's breasts while she is being electrocuted.
  • Teri Weigel shows breasts in a very dark scene where Drew peeps through a trailer window and sees her having sex. We never see her face in the film.
  • Jennifer Tilly has a small role as another traveler who is stranded due to the gas shortage. She has no exposure, but wears lacy, skimpy things. The exposure would be difficult to catch in a video version, or at normal speed for that matter, but going frame by frame shows a lot of flesh.


Scoop's notes in yellow

One of Far From Home's more important roles is played by one of our old favorites, Dick Miller. This guy would have to own some kind of record if we can figure out how to define it properly. I don't know whether he has been in more bad movies than anyone else in history, but he certainly was in bad movies over a longer period than almost anyone else. In 1956 Miller appeared in Gunslinger, rated 3.5 at IMDb. Forty five years later, he appeared in Route 666, a film rated 4.1 at IMDb. Here's his amazing filmography ordered by IMDb rating. You'll notice that he has also managed to appear in some major films from time to time. He was in The Terminator, and just missed appearing in Pulp Fiction - the famous Tarantino film is actually listed on Miller's filmography, but his appearance ended up on the cutting room floor.

To be honest, John Carradine would probably own that uncoveted bad movie longevity record if his career were fully documented. I suppose that Carradine was in really bad films for about sixty years, but very few of his films from the 1930s and 1940s have an IMDb score. 

The summary:

A meek writer and his fourteen year old daughter (Drew Barrymore) are heading back to L.A. from their summer camping vacation when they get stuck without gas in East Inbred, Nevada. It looks bleak, but they are in luck. The town, although not on the interstate, not possessing one single drop of gasoline, and not sporting a population over 150 people, does have a tourist trailer court and a vacancy sign! What? No Ritz Carlton? I suppose if we can accept the overall presence of overnight accommodations, we shouldn't be surprised by the vacancy! They probably haven't rented the trailers out since the Harding administration, but they are eternally optimistic and have several Coke machines.

The city slickers find that their stay in the town turns into Deliverance Two, with the desert playing the part of the river. In fact, it's just their luck that the town is proud to be the smallest town in America with its own serial killer. The proud local Rotarians even have it listed on the welcome sign: "Welcome to East Inbred, home of the largest grain silo in a town without grain, and home to the serial murderer who has killed the highest percentage of his town's population. Support our veterans." Except the "s" is crossed out of "veterans."

You'd think a dedicated serial killer would move to a bigger population center just to increase his options. Actually, now that I think about it, maybe the guy has been murdering for decades and East Inbred used to be a really big city. Well, however the math works out, the fact of the matter is that Drew and her dad are getting a little panicky being in such a small village with a known serial killer because the killer has pretty much exhausted all his other murderin' options. And murder isn't the half of their problems! During Drew Barrymore's short stay in East Inbred, the traumatized city girl faces the three worst things that can happen to a human being: rape, murder, and a long conversation with Jennifer Tilly.

Although Drew Barrymore was only 14 at the time, this was more or less her introduction into acting in the world of grown-up roles. This was Drew's trashy and tragic period, the era that prompted comic Bill Maher to quip, "when E.T. went home, he made Drew Barrymore promise to be a good girl. Boy is he gonna be surprised when he returns." In this film, she showed off her already mammoth mammaries in a wet t-shirt, walked around in a bikini, and flirted with creepy rapin', murderin', inbred country boys.

... pretty much like Drew's real life at the time.

... except without the booze and pills.

The film is approximately average straight-to-vid quality. It's completely predictable and trite, but the storyline is coherent, and the whole project is kinda barely watchable.

The Critics Vote

  • Maltin 1.5/4

The People Vote ...

  • With their votes ... IMDB summary: IMDb voters only score it 5.6, but 20% of the voters awarded 10/10!
IMDb guideline: 7.5 usually indicates a level of excellence, about like three and a half stars from the critics. 6.0 usually indicates lukewarm watchability, about like two and a half stars from the critics. The fives are generally not worthwhile unless they are really your kind of material, about like two stars from the critics. Films under five are generally awful even if you like that kind of film, equivalent to about one and a half stars from the critics or less, depending on just how far below five the rating is.

My own guideline: A means the movie is so good it will appeal to you even if you hate the genre. B means the movie is not good enough to win you over if you hate the genre, but is good enough to do so if you have an open mind about this type of film. C means it will only appeal to genre addicts, and has no crossover appeal. D means you'll hate it even if you like the genre. E means that you'll hate it even if you love the genre. F means that the film is not only unappealing across-the-board, but technically inept as well.

Based on this description, this film is a C (Tuna) to C- (Scoop).

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