This film could have been titled “There Will Be Beef.”
When Ronny Cammareri sweeps Loretta Castorini off her feet in "Moonstruck," he almost, in his exuberance, throws her over his shoulder. "Where are you taking me?" she cries. "To the bed!" he says. Not to bed, but to the bed. There is the slightest touch of formality in that phrasing, and it is enough to cause Loretta to let her head fall back in surrender. Such sublime abandon, by Nicolas Cage and Cher, is part of the magic of Norman Jewison's 1987 romantic comedy, but it also depends on truth spoken in plain words.
When Rose Castorini, Loretta's mother, discovers that her husband Cosmo is cheating on her, she asks her daughter's fiance Johnny why men cheat. Maybe it's because they fear death, he says. Later that night, when Cosmo sneaks in late, she nails him in the hallway: "I just want you to know that no matter what you do, you're still gonna die! Just like everyone else!" He looks at her with the eyes of a man who has been long married to this woman, and replies, "Thank you, Rose."
"Moonstruck" is a romantic comedy founded on emotional abandon and poignant truth. Not content with one romance, it involves five or six, depending on how you count, and conceding that some characters are involved in more than one. It exists in a Brooklyn that has never existed, a Brooklyn where the full moon makes the night like day and drives people crazy with amore, when the moon-a hits their eyes like a big-a pizza pie. The soundtrack is equal parts "La Boheme" and Dean Martin, and Ronny Cammareri's feelings are like those of an operatic hero, larger than life and more dramatic, as when he tells Loretta why he hates his brother Johnny. One day Johnny distracted him at the bakery, he says, and his hand got caught in the bread-slicer. As a result, his girlfriend dumped him. Holding his wooden hand in the air and pointing to it dramatically, he cries: "I want my hand! I want my bride! Johnny has his hand! Johnny has his bride!"
Johnny's bride-to-be is in fact Loretta, who has come to the bakery to persuade Ronny to attend their wedding. But after he takes her to the bed, everything changes, and Johnny (Danny Aiello), who is in Sicily at the bedside of his dying mother, is in for a shock when he returns to Brooklyn.