[[quoteright:335:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/arizona_9716.jpg]]
[[caption-width-right:335:Just your typical American family.]]

->'''Ed:''' I'm not gonna live this way, Hi! It just ain't family life!
->'''H.I.:''' Well... it ain't "Ozzie and Harriet."

H.I. (NicolasCage), harmless criminal, and Ed (Holly Hunter), a cop, meet and fall in love during a series of mug shots. They get married, settle down, and decide they want kids. There's one problem: Ed's infertile. They try adopting, but H.I.'s criminal past prevents this. Then, when all seems hopeless, an opportunity presents itself: Furniture magnate and local celebrity Nathan Arizona (Trey Wilson)'s wife gives birth to quintuplets. An off-handed remark about "having more than they can handle" gives H.I. and Ed the idea to kidnap one of the babies, and raise it as their own. So, H.I. sneaks in, and takes Nathan Jr. (we think), and that's when all hell breaks loose. First, H.I's prison buddies Gale (John Goodman) and Evelle (William Forsythe) break out, and hole up at their place. Then a demonic bounty hunter (Randall "Tex" Cobb), seems to spring from H.I.'s nightmares to pursue him. [[ArsonMurderAndJaywalking And then he punches out his boss.]] Directed by Creator/TheCoenBrothers.

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!!This film provides examples of:

* AllGirlsWantBadBoys
* ApologeticAttacker: HI apologizes twice while fighting Smalls. The first time seems to be out of pure terror and the second time [[spoiler: is after pulling the pin out of Small's grenade, killing him.]]
* AssholeVictim: Subverted. We initially think Nathan Arizona is this, and his early dialogue suggests a potential BigBad. When [[spoiler: HI and Ed return his son]] he realises they took him. He refuses to call the cops, genuinely thanks them, and offers them [[PetTheDog uplifting advice]] on starting a family of their own.
* BabiesEverAfter: [[spoiler:In H.I's final dream, he and Ed finally have kids (and grandkids) of their own.]]
* BabiesMakeEverythingBetter
* BadAss: Nathan Arizona proves himself to be quite formidible when confronted by Leonard Smals. He's completely unimpressed by Small's threats and attempts at intimidation. When Smalls shoots his hand out to catch a fly three inches from Arizona's face, he doesn't even blink.
* BadassBiker: Leonard Smalls, to a supernatural degree.
* BeardOfEvil: Leonard Smalls.
* BlackComedy
* CannotTellAJoke: H.I's boss, Glen, is always telling Polack jokes that no one thinks are funny. He also bungles one and has to start over again. [[spoiler: HI notes that it finally gets him in trouble when he tries to crack a Polack joke to a Polish highway patrolman.]]
* CatchPhrase:
** "Okay then," the catchphrase of Arizona yokels.
** HI's boss always says, "Say, that reminds me..."
** Ed's "Turn to the right!"
** Ed's off-screen co-worker: "Don't forget the _______, Ed!"
* ChaseScene: Cops and trigger-happy civilians wildly pursue H.I. and Ed after a bungled robbery.
* CloudCuckooLand: Rural Arizona is depicted as such.
* CodeName:
-->'''Gale''': I told you not to use our names. Can't you try to keep from forgetting that?
-->'''Evelle''': Not even our code names?
-->'''Gale''': Oh yeah, right.
-->'''Evelle''': Y'all hear that? We're using code names!
* ComedicSociopathy
* ComicallyMissingThePoint: "Son, you've got a ''panty'' on your head!"
* [[DidYouJustPunchOutCthulhu Did You Just Blow Up Cthulhu?]]
* DisproportionateRetribution: Kicking off the epic ChaseScene, the cops are quick to open fire on H.I., even though all he did was steal [[ProductPlacement Huggies]] (he left the cash on the counter).
* DistantFinale: H.I.'s dream
* DonutMessWithACop: "You wanna find an outlaw, you call an outlaw; you wanna find a Dunkin' Donuts, call a cop."
* DreamSequence: H.I. has nightmares about the Biker, and the epilogue of the film is more pleasant dream.
* DrivesLikeCrazy: When H.I. is running from the cops, Ed's police training kicks in, and she immediately turns into ''Film/{{Bullitt}}''.
* EinsteinHair: H.I., although it's obvious he's no scientist.
* EldritchAbomination: H.I. believes this is what the Biker is. The fact that he roars and bleeds fire when shot seems to hint that Hi may be right.
* EmbarrassingFirstName:
** H.I. reluctantly signs his DearJohnLetter [[spoiler: Herbert]].
** Nathan Arizona is apparently embarrassed by his ''last'' name-- he was born "Nathan Huffheinz", but claims that he changed his name because nobody would buy furniture from a store called "Unpainted Huffheinz".
* EvenBadMenLoveTheirMamas: Averted; Leonard Smalls' tattoo reads "Mama Didn't Love Me."
* FreudianExcuse: The Biker's tattoo reads "Momma didn't love me".
* GenderBlenderName:
** Gale and Evelle, the two male cons, though "Gail" is the feminine spelling of the former.
** Ed. H.I. even claims they named the male baby Ed.
* {{Hammerspace}}: A subtle but [[RuleOfCool cool]] version of this: As the biker walks through Unpainted Arizona, a cigar appears in one hand, out of nowhere, and a match in his other, which he strikes on a wall, to light the cigar.
* HandCannon: The clerk at the store uses one.
* HarmfulToMinors: Leonard Smalls threatens to sell Nathan Jr. on the black market if he doesn't get his ransom.
* HoistByHisOwnPetard: Telling Polack jokes to a cop named "Kowalski"? Bad idea. Also, Leonard Smalls is [[spoiler:blown up by his own grenades.]]
* HypocriticalHumor: Ed repeatedly admonishes Hi not to swear in front of the baby, but upon noticing that he's holding up a convenience store repeatedly exclaims, "That son of a bitch!"
* IceCreamKoan: "Well, there's what's right, and there's what's right, and never the twain shall meet."
* ImperialStormtrooperMarksmanshipAcademy: The cops and the grocery store owner graduated with honors.
* ImplacableMan: Leonard Smalls is portrayed as such, a seemingly undefeatable foe who draws closer and closer to the main couple.
* Irony: You know how Nathan Arizona keeps promising that he has the lowest prices anywhere, or that he's going to kick your butt "or my name ain't Nathan Arizona"? Well, turns out, it's not.
* JerkWithAHeartOfGold: Nathan Arizona, Sr. turns out to be a decent guy in the end.
* KickTheDog: The Biker's EstablishingCharacterMoment -- [[EnemyToAllLivingThings he shoots a lizard with a shotgun and tosses a grenade at a bunny rabbit.]] [[ImprobableAimingSkills While speeding on his bike]].
* LockAndLoadMontage: Parodied. H.I. is going back and forth speechifying, putting another small handgun in his pants every time he reappears on screen. Finally, he appears with a shotgun, saying "So let's go, honey! (cocks gun) Let's go get Nathan Jr!"
* LyricalDissonance: One of the main themes of the film is based on the tune of "Down in the Willow Garden" aka "Rose Connelly," a song about a man awaiting execution for murdering a young woman. The lyrics are heard only in one scene, where Ed sings it as a lullaby.
* MagicalRealism: Definitely. The plot is centered around a fairly mundane love story/kidnapping scheme, but it also involves a bounty hunter who may or may not be a demon from Hell.[[note]]According to HI, "...he was the fury that would be as soon as Florence Arizona found her little Nathan gone."[[/note]] And then there's Hi's tendency to have prophetic and/or clairvoyant dreams, which he doesn't seem to consider unusual.
* MaintainTheLie: H.I. and Ed [[spoiler:after they "adopt" Nathan Jr.]]
* MamaBear: Ed is ready to throw down with Leonard Smalls over Nathan, despite being unarmed.
* MyBiologicalClockIsTicking:
-->"I want a baby, H.I.! They got more than they can handle."
* NoHoldsBarredBeatdown: The biker gives this to H.I. at the end.
* NotSoDifferent: [[spoiler: H.I. and the Biker have the same Mr. Horsepower tattoo, fueling the possibility that he really is Hi's personal demon]].
* OhCrap: The biker's expression when he realizes H.I. [[spoiler: is holding the pin from one of his grenades]].
** Gale and Evelle have this reaction after finding out they left Junior behind following their botched bank robbery attempt.
* OnePhoneCall: An offscreen voice reminds Ed to give H.I. one.
* PineappleSurprise: how Hi [[spoiler: defeats Leonard Smalls]]
* PinPullingTeeth: Done by Leonard Smalls.
* PintSizedPowerhouse: Ed, played by 5'2" Holly Hunter, is an officer of the law, ''twice decorated''. Her face off against the biker should give some idea of how she achieved that. Also, when she slaps H.I. for robbing the convenience store, he looks like he's been punched by someone bigger than him.
* RunningGag:
** HI repeatedly identifies the kidnapped baby as, "Nathan Jr... I think." Later, Nathan Arizona says the same thing.
** Hi and Ed still calling their kidnapped baby Nathan, Jr. When asked by others what the baby's name is, they each give the other partner's name, adding a "Junior" to the end of it. And then after Gale and Evelle take the baby away, they start calling him Gale Jr.
** Everyone in Arizona says "Okay, then."
** Glen's obsession with Polack jokes.
** HI's co-worker always telling the same story about finding a human head on the highway.
** Whenever Nathan Jr changes hands, the Dr Spock baby guide goes with him.
* ScarilyCompetentTracker: Smalls, to the point he might not even be ''human''.
* ScaryBlackMan: Sometimes he gets the menstrual cramps ''real hard''.
* ShoutOut:
** "P.O.E." and "O.P.E." scrawled on a bathroom door is a Shout Out to ''Film/DrStrangelove''.
** The Biker's real name is [[Literature/OfMiceAndMen "Leonard Smalls."]] His friends call him "Lenny"... but he ain't got no friends.
** The tracking shot, supposedly the POV of Leonard Smalls' motorcycle speeding right up into the Arizona family window, is an homage to Creator/{{Sam Raimi}}'s ''Franchise/EvilDead'' films. The Coen brothers were early collaborators with Raimi.
* ASimplePlan: Stealing one of the Arizona quints, since the parents "have more than they can handle."
* SophisticatedAsHell: H.I., and everyone in the film, to some degree. An early example of the Coens' fondness for stylization, but RogerEbert found it distracting enough to pan the movie over it.
--> '''Evelle:''' No ma'am, we didn't escape, we released ourselves from prison on our own recognizance.
--> '''Gale:''' We felt we'd reached the limits of what the institution had to offer us.
* StuffBlowingUp: Pretty much everything in the film's climax...[[spoiler:including the biker]].
* StupidCrooks: H.I. is a terrible crook, getting caught every time he tries to stick up a quickie mart. Evelle and Gale are just as bad, thoroughly bungling their bank robbery and constantly "leaving a man behind."
* SubvertedRhymeEveryOccasion: The Arizona Quints: Harry, Barry, Larry, Garry, and Nathan Junior.
* TattooedCrook: H.I. and Leonard Smalls both sport tattoos, including the same Mr. Horsepower tattoo.
* TearsOfJoy: Ed, after H.I. gets Nathan Jr.
* ThemeTuneCameo: A Muzak version of the theme plays in a supermarket. Ed also sings a "lullaby" to the tune.
* TomboyishName: Ed, short for Edwina.
* TooManyBabies: the Arizona quints.
* WordSaladTitle: It's not clear until you see the film that "Arizona" is a surname, so "Raising Arizona" means raising a child with the name of Arizona.
* YouCanSeeThatRight: H.I. to Ed when Smalls appears.
* YouShallNotPass: H.I. attempts this, leading to a beatdown.
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