Joe Piscopo stars in How Sweet It Is, a musical comedy made by Brian Herzlinger. The actor is one of the two stars that was part of the 1980s class of Saturday Night Live. He gives it a lot of effort that you might question if he is too good for the movie.
The movie is about Jack Cosmo (Joe Piscopo), a gambler who has a large loan from the local mob leader Big Mike (Paul Sorvino). He is a legend in the theater world and has a Tony award to prove it. But now he is down on his luck and in order to repay his debt, the mob boss asks Cosmo to put up a show about a candy fugue.
Big Mike wants Piscopo to write and direct the movie based on his ideas. He also wants his underworld associates part of the show. These include a dancing crack addict (Jonathan Slavin), a doctor who performs illegal transsexual surgeries (Michael Guarnera), and an undercover FBI agent (Erich Bergen) who has a very good singing voice.
How Sweet It Is is all about backstage nonsense. It lacks humor in its irrationalities that include a shock therapy skit where the crack addict confronts an actor that plays his mother’s hairy mole. There’s also one that features Erika Christensen, who plays Piscopo’s daughter in the movie. She has to shout “Where are my trannies!” before six divas in colorful tutus waltz on stage to sing about chocolate.
How Sweet It Is doesn’t deserve its title. It foes sour too fast that no amount of song and dance numbers can redeem it. This is Piscopo’s first movie in six years and it is clear he accepted it to pay the bills. It is a low budget affair with the supposed corporate office looks like an apartment. Another office looks like a broom closet. Don’t expect too much from this movie.