Movie Booze + Pregnancy = ?
October 20, 2006 7:37 AM   Subscribe

Question about Maya Rudolph, champagne, and A Prairie Home Companion.

Google has failed me so far: Is there something that I'm missing about a very pregnant Maya Rudolph taking a swig of champagne in the film A Prairie Home Companion? Is it just to shock the audience as a joke? Is it a reference to her Donatella Versace character on SNL?
posted by starman to Media & Arts (11 answers total)
Are you under the impression that one swig of champagne is going to kill the unborn child? Or that movies are supposed to double as public-service announcements, presenting only behavior that lives up to the highest standards of current medical theory? People do lots of things in movies that you wouldn't want your significant other to do; is there something about this in particular that warrants special explanation?

Oh, and you do realize there almost certainly wasn't actual champagne in that bottle, don't you? People don't really drink on movie sets. (When they're supposed to be drinking in the movie, I mean.)
posted by languagehat at 7:47 AM on October 20, 2006 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: I understand all of the above, but having seen a lot of movies and having a pretty good sense of humor, the action still made little sense to me so I thought there might be something else behind it.
posted by starman at 7:56 AM on October 20, 2006

you are looking too deeply into this.

she's pregnant. she took a swig of booze. it's a joke.

go outside.
posted by secret about box at 8:19 AM on October 20, 2006

Is it just to shock the audience as a joke?

posted by Robot Johnny at 8:20 AM on October 20, 2006

A little bit of champagne is not going to harm baby. It's still "shocking" to see a pregnant lady have even a little alcohol, probably because the whole implication that what she will do in public she will do in private, ergo she has no problem with drinking while pregnant.

However, some things have just been PSA'd to death.

I didn't think the moment in the film was shocking, just funny and sort of cute.

I bet it is less a clear reference to Donatella and more of an example of how Maya Rudolph often employs alcohol as a physical comedy device.
posted by hermitosis at 8:20 AM on October 20, 2006

You could write a Post to the Host and ask Mr. Keillor himself. After all he did write the screenplay.
posted by wheelieman at 8:22 AM on October 20, 2006

I remember that scene. I also saw the American version of The Last Kiss, and a pregnant women drank champagne in the film also. Since it is so ingrained to not drink alcohol while pregnant, it's a shock to see it on film.
posted by LoriFLA at 8:25 AM on October 20, 2006

Response by poster: You could write a Post to the Host and ask Mr. Keillor himself. After all he did write the screenplay.

Not a bad idea, but from what it sounds like they didn't follow the script that carefully. I'm guessing it was improvised. Still wouldn't hurt to ask.
posted by starman at 8:29 AM on October 20, 2006

I just saw this movie. IIRC, doesn't Kevin Kline say "sorry" to her pregnant belly immediately afterward?
posted by granted at 9:57 AM on October 20, 2006

When Kevin Kline was on Late Night with Conan O'brien, he spoke about this scene. It doesn't your answer question exactly, but it's relevant:

1. If you listen carefully as he's popping it open, you can hear Robert Altman off-screen react to getting hit in the head with the cork.

2. Kline had difficulty switching the glasses so that Maya would be drinking sparkling cider. But he did it.
posted by one_bean at 10:06 AM on October 20, 2006

Just as an aide, Bean, the first item you mention is a reference to the first anniversary of the radio show way back in 1975. They popped open a bottle of champaign, and seconds later, radio listeners heard a ten year old boy yelp in pain as the cork hit him in the head. The kid came back for the 20th anniversary show.
posted by wheelieman at 10:25 AM on October 25, 2006

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