Sgt. Joseph Andrew 'Joe' Bomowski (Sylvester Stallone) is a tough Los Angeles detective leading an antisocial existence. His relationship with his on-again, off-again girlfriend and precinct supervisor Lt. Gwen Harper is on the rocks. He is thus dismayed when his meddling, mind-numbingly annoying mother Tutti (Estelle Getty from The Golden Girls) pays him a surprise visit from Newark. From the second she sets foot off the plane, she's driving him round the bend; showing embarrassing pictures of him and telling embarrassing stories about him to everyone on the plane and at the police station, insisting he eat a three course meal for breakfast, tucking him in and singing him a lullaby at night, and generally treating him as though he's seven years old. When she cleans the barrel of his gun with a pipe cleaner and thus ruins it, she heads to the hood to buy him a new one. Failing to get one legitimately from a gun store, she buys one illegally. In the process, she witnesses a homicide. She gives false information to the police about the homicide, instead letting Joseph take the case on all by himself so he can get a promotion; to his chagrin. She insists on accompanying as he investigates it; to his even greater chagrin. Hilarity Ensues.
This film provides examples of:
- Amazingly Embarrassing Parent: Played to a "T", Embarrassing Old Photos and everything.
- Imagine Spot: Joe imagining his mother come after him with a huge pack of diapers and an oversized bottle of talcum powder.
- Insurance Fraud
- My Beloved Smother: The whole plot.
- Never Mess with Granny
- Obstructive Vigilantism: The titular mom is not telling all the details so that her son can investigate.
- Playing Against Type: Another crowning demonstration that Stallone cannot do comedy.
- Title Drop: Stallone says "Stop! Or my mom will shoot!" during a shootout at a warehouse.