Cry-Baby is a teen musical written by the ever-campy John Waters. Johnny Depp stars in the film as a '50s teen rebel known as "Cry-Baby" Wade Walker, with other notable actors appearing such as Iggy Pop, Ricki Lake, Patty Hearst, and Traci Lords. Waters wrote the film as a parody of teen musicals as a whole, instead focusing on the delinquents instead of the uptight preppy kids.
The film begins in Baltimore, Maryland during the 1950's as bad boy "Cry-Baby" Walker leads a gang of delinquents known as "Drapes." The gang's members include Walker's sister and teen mom Pepper, facially deformed "Hatchet Face," wild and free Wanda, and Milton, the son of religious extremists. Cry-Baby's ability to cry a singular tear drives the girls crazy, a signal that the boy has a sensitive side.
One day, after giving blood, at school, Cry-Baby is approached by Allison Vernon-Williams, a cute girl bored with being a "square" and the two fall for each other. Later in the same day, he goes to the "square" part of Baltimore for a talent show being held at a recreation center where Allison's grandma hosts social gatherings. Wade introduces himself to Mrs. Vernon-Williams, but she is very skeptical of his intentions. He then invites Allison to Turkey Point, a drape hangout spot where a party will be held.
Despite her grandma's worries, Allison joins Cry-Baby and even joins in the concert. As the lovers share their stories as orphans, Allison's jerk boyfriend, Baldwin shows up and starts a fracas. Because of his nature, Cry-Baby is blamed and sent to jail, raging at his friends and even at Mrs. Vernon-Williams; herself impressed with Cry-Baby's upbringing and musical ability.
Later, Lenora Frigid, a girl crushing hard on Cry-Baby despite repeated rejections, claims to be knocked up by Cry-Baby. Allison is betrayed with this news, returning to the squares, despite her grandma's advice against it. back in prison, Cry-Baby is given a teardrop tattoo.
Eventually, Allison listens to the alliance between her grandma and the Drapes and stands by Cry-Baby to campaign for freeing him. Although Cry-Baby is freed, Baldwin immediately insults him; Baldin's grandfather was the executioner when Cry-Baby's father was sentenced to the electric chair. Cry-Baby and Baldwin engage in a game of chicken, with Cry-Baby winning and reuniting with Allison. The film ends as everyone viewing the race cries one tear, except Cry-Baby and Allison; letting go of the past, he now cries with both eyes.