Archive for john waters

Multiple Maniacs Criterion Review at 366 Weird Movies

Posted in Film, john waters, movies, USA with tags , , , , , on May 25, 2017 by goregirl

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Check out my review of Criterion’s New Blu-Ray Edition of John Waters’ Multiple Maniacs over at 366 Weird Movies.

Goregirl’s Dungeon on YouTube: Mink Stole – Female Trouble

Posted in movies, USA with tags , , , , , , , on June 13, 2013 by goregirl

Mink Stole – Female Trouble with images from John  Waters’ 1974 film Female Trouble. Mink Stole and her Wonderful Band from the album Do Re MINK. You can buy Ms. Stole’s album here.

MULTIPLE MANIACS (1970) – The Dungeon Review!

Posted in movies, USA with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 14, 2013 by goregirl

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John Waters has long been one of my favourite directors and it is a crime that Multiple Maniacs is only the second review I have posted for one of his films! I love the hell out of the cast of regulars that appeared in Waters’ early films. While I enjoy all of Waters’ films they were never the same after Divine died in 1988. Sadly, David Lochary (1944 – 1977) and Cookie Mueller (1949 – 1989) also shuffled off this mortal coil far too young. All three performers are featured prominently in Waters’ Multiple Maniacs. There are a million other reasons I love Waters’ films but primarily they make me laugh my ass off! John Waters has spoken openly about his influences among them Russ Meyer, Otto Preminger, Pier Paolo Pasolini, William Castle, George and Mike Kuchar and the great Herschell Gordon Lewis (His The Gore Gore Girls inspired my moniker). Multiple Maniacs’ title is a nod to Mr. Lewis’ Two Thousand Maniacs. At one point in Multiple Maniacs Lady Divine fondles some entrails and eats some human organ meat ala Lewis’ Blood Feast. Another reason John Waters has been on my mind was his appearance in the documentary It Came From Kuchar. A highly recommended documentary you can check out here (also check out my review for Sins of The Fleshapoids and My Kind of Story’s tumbler post of Mike Kuchar screen captures). I have enjoyed the hell out of the Mike and George Kuchar films I’ve seen thus far! To be honest, John Waters is never far from my mind; I re-watch Waters’ older films regularly! I think Multiple Maniacs is a rather underappreciated gem in Waters’ resume.

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Mutliple Maniacs follows Lady Divine’s descent into a complete and utter maniacal state. We meet Lady Divine as she performs at her Cavalcade of Perversions. The final act of Lady Divine’s Cavalcade of Perversions involves throwing a net over the audience and robbing them. Lady Divine has had enough of going through the hassles of putting on the show and her performers are getting on her final nerve; particularly her lover Mr. David. She receives a call from the owner of a local bar informing her that Mr. David is in the bar with a blonde. She heads to the bar post-haste but is raped in an alley by a couple of guttersnipes. As she lay writhing on the sidewalk the infinite Prague appears to her. She takes his hand and is lead to a Catholic Church. She ponders on the stories from the bible she recalled from childhood but is distracted by a woman who gives her a “lewdly religious glare”. The woman moves about the pews until she is finally sitting next to Lady Divine. Believing the woman to be part of her enlightenment Lady Divine allows the stranger to insert her rosary beads into her most private of parts. Refreshed by the experience she takes the woman home with her. Meanwhile Mr. David and his blond await Lady Divine’s appearance.

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Multiple Maniacs is an epic story filmed in black and white with a million scenes that make me laugh myself to tears. The reactions of the horrified white bread folk that show up for Lady Divine’s Cavalcade of Perversions kill me. Likewise the comments of Lady Divine’s performers while looking through the stolen wallets; “What ugly children they have!” The first scene that pops into the mind of those who have seen Multiple Maniacs is Divine being raped by Lobstora (a giant lobster!); and there is no two ways about it, that scene is definitely a memorable one. My personal favourite segment however is the infinite Prague/Church bit, I just love me some offensive religious imagery! There are all manner of references to popular culture and headlines from the period; Cookie is screwing a member of the Weather Underground, Lady Divine has Mr. David convinced that he killed Sharon Tate, and while contemplating celebrities they would like to kill they mention Ann-Margret, Patricia Nixon, Ronald Reagan and Barbra Streisand. Have I mentioned there is gore?! I could go on and on but to summarize I freaking love Multiple Maniacs.

multiple maniacs22Mr. David playing the master of ceremonies attracting patrons to Lady Divine’s Cavalcade of Perversions. “What you will see inside of this tent will make you literally sick; we’ve got it all and we show it all.”

multiple maniacs21One of the shows “perverts”.

multiple maniacs24This guy eats his own vomit.

multiple maniacs11Appalled patrons of Lady Divine’s Cavalcade of Perversions. “She’s a dyke! Look at those tattoos!”

multiple maniacs2Lady Divine getting ready for the show. “Ricky! Ricky! Bring me something strong. Something I can get off on.”

multiple maniacs4The final act of Lady Divine’s Cavalcade of Perversions involves throwing a net over the audience and robbing them. “Quiet while I’m speaking! You will not be injured as long as everyone cooperates.”

multiple maniacs16Lady Divine’s daughter Cookie dancing topless in her bedroom.

multiple maniacs7Edith calls Lady Divine to tell her that Mr. David is in her bar with a blonde.

multiple maniacs6Mr. David and Bonnie discussing how they will deal with Lady Divine. “I love you so fucking much, I could shit!”

multiple maniacs5Lady Divine and her new friend Mink being hassled by a cop. “You’re talking to a lady! You better watch your language pig before I turn you into a piece of bacon.”

multiple maniacs3Multiple Maniacs ends with several people dead, Divine being raped by a giant lobster, the National Guard and Kate Smith singing God Bless America.

Bravo! Multiple Maniacs gets my highest of recommendations; a perfect score!!

Dungeon Rating: 5/5

Directed By: John Waters

Starring: Divine, David Lochary, Mary Vivian Pearce, Mink Stole, Cookie Mueller, Edith Massey, Susan Lowe, Rick Morrow, Howard Gruber, Paul Swift

DUNGEON DIRECTOR PROJECT: My 50 Favourite Directors #20 – #16

Posted in movies with tags , , , , on July 29, 2012 by goregirl

My 50 Favourite Directors #20 – #16

I could write endlessly about every director in my top 20. I’ve seen the vast majority of these director’s films, if not their entire library. Each one has titles in their list I have seen multiple times and hold an extra special place in my heart. Beware copious use of complimentary adjectives!

*NOTE: I did not include any made for TV movies in the numbers I used for each director’s full-length feature films.*


#20. Terry Gilliam

What I’ve Seen: The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus (2009), Tideland (2005), The Brothers Grimm (2005), Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas (1998), Twelve Monkeys (1995), The Fisher King (1991), The Adventures of Baron Munchausen (1988), Brazil (1985), Time Bandits (1981), Jabberwocky (1977), Monty Python and the Holy Grail (1975)

I’ve seen all 11 of Terry Gilliam’s full length feature films. There is something downright magical about Gilliam’s films. They are as fantastical, fairy tale-esque and funny as they are strange, dark and hallucinatory. Gilliam was a member of Monty Python but started his career in animation. He is responsible for the animation in the Monty Python skits and films. He also co-directed his first film The Holy Grail with fellow Monty Python member Terry Jones. I love the imaginative way he shows the world whether it’s through the eyes of a child, an anxious bureaucrat, an old man, or a drug-addled writer. I enjoy every film on this list, but I have an extra special affection for Brazil, Twelve Monkeys, The Adventures of Baron Munchausen, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, Time Bandits and of course Monty Python and the Holy Grail. Gilliam’s array of crazy camera angles and his surreal backdrops and images (I suspect inspired by his background in animation) make for a trippy and unique experience quite unlike any other. Terry Gilliam is an unconventional, creative genius; I would love to climb inside this guy’s head for a weekend.


#19. John Waters

What I’ve Seen: A Dirty Shame (2004), Cecil B. DeMented (2000), Pecker (1998), Serial Mom (1994), Cry-Baby (1990), Hairspray (1988), Polyester (1981), Desperate Living (1977), Female Trouble (1974), Pink Flamingos (1972), Multiple Maniacs (1970), Mondo Trasho (1969)

I have seen 12 of John Waters’ 13 full length feature films; I have been unable to get my hands on Eat Your Makeup. I’m crazy about the quirky bunch of regulars in Waters older films which include; Divine, David Lochary, Edith Massey, Mary Vivian Pearce, Susan Lowe, Mink Stole, Cookie Mueller and Susan Walsh. They seemed willing to do just about any insane thing John Waters asked them to. They are rude and crude and hilarious! I suppose Waters’ early films appeal to a select slice of the population but they sure do tickle me. I love Waters sense of humour and his trashy retro vibe. I paid huge bucks to snag copies of Multiple Maniacs, Mondo Trasho and Female Trouble on VHS several years ago. These days most of Waters’ films are readily available. My personal favourites are Female Trouble, Pink Flamingos, Multiple Maniacs and Polyester. I have seen every John Waters film from Hairspray onward in the theatre and had a chance to see Pink Flamingos when it returned to theatres for its 25th anniversary. While Waters’ older films will always be my favourites, I have found something to enjoy in every last film on this list. I love Divine’s final romp in Hairspray, Serial Mom and Pecker. I went to see Pecker on opening night and they gave away “Pecker teabags” which is pretty funny if you’ve seen the film. There really is no one like John Waters. The man is truly a one of a kind gem who proudly embraces his standing as The Prince of Puke and The Pope of Trash.


#18. Lars von Trier

What I’ve Seen: The Element of Crime (1984), Epidemic (1987), Medea (1988), Europa (1991), Breaking the Waves (1996), The Idiots (1998), Dancer in the Dark (2000), Dogville (2003), Manderlay (2005), The Boss of It All (2006), Antichrist (2009), Melancholia (2011)

Lars von Trier has directed 13 full length feature films and has two in pre-production; The Nymphomaniac and The Nymphomaniac Part 2. I have seen 12 of these films and every one is a fascination. Every von Trier film is a completely new experience. Whether the film is shot on an elaborate set, an empty soundstage or with a handheld camera they burrow into my head and stay there for days. I find his films bleak, beautiful and challenging. Von Trier’s drama gets under my skin more than most horror films. I felt emotionally drained after watching Breaking the Waves and Dogville! Von Trier in fact has actually delved into horror with his TV Show Kingdom Hospital and his 2009 film Antichrist. I saw Antichrist at the 2009 Vancouver International film festival. I have actually seen a goodly amount of Von Trier’s films in a theatre. I gave Antichrist, Madea, Europa, Breaking the Waves and Dogville a perfect score, but every single film on this list is amazing. I think Lars von Trier is one of the most creative and daring directors working today.


#17. Pedro Almodóvar

What I’ve Seen: Dark Habits (1983), What Have I Done to Deserve This? (1984), Matador (1986), Law of Desire (1987), Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown (1988), Tie Me Up! Tie Me Down! (1990), High Heels (1991), Kika (1993), The Flower of My Secret (1995), Live Flesh (1997), All About My Mother (1999), Talk to Her (2002), Bad Education (2004), Volver (2006), Broken Embraces (2009), The Skin I Live In (2011)

Spanish director Pedro Almodóvar has 19 full length feature films and is currently filming I’m So Excited. I have seen 16 of Almodóvar’s films; Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown was the first subtitled film I ever seen in a theatre, and I’ve seen several of his films on the big screen since. His films teeter the edge of melodrama exploring multiple identities, religion, death, morality, family and particularly sexuality. Almodóvar’s films beautifully capture Spain’s culture but are also intensely personal. Almodóvar has penned all his films with the exception of Live Flesh which was based on Ruth Rendell’s book. His strong female characters and their trials and tribulations are extremely appealing to me. While delving into some heavy subjects and dark themes he almost always brings a bit of humour into the fray. Almodóvar’s films are also lovely to look at, specifically his bold use of colour. I enjoyed every film on my list but my favourites are Tie me up! Tie Me Down, Matador, Law of Desire, Talk to Her, Bad Education, Volver and The Skin I Live In. I eagerly anticipate everything and anything that comes from Pedro Almodóvar; the man is an extraordinary talent who creates films that tantalize and captivate me.


#16. Martin Scorsese

What I’ve Seen: Mean Streets (1973), Alice Doesn’t Live Here Anymore (1974), Taxi Driver (1976), New York, New York (1977), The Last Waltz (1978), Raging Bull (1980), The King of Comedy (1983), After Hours (1985), The Color of Money (1986), The Last Temptation of Christ (1988), Goodfellas (1990), Cape Fear (1991), The Age of Innocence (1993), Casino (1995), Kundun (1997), Bringing Out the Dead (1999), Gangs of New York (2002), The Aviator (2004), The Departed (2006), Shutter Island (2010)

I have seen 20 of Martin Scorsese’s 31 full length feature films; he also has two films in pre-production, The Wolf of Wall Street and Silence; Sinatra is listed on his IMDB page as “announced”. To quote the King Missile song Martin Scorsese; “He makes the best fucking films I’ve ever seen in my life! I fucking love him! I fucking love him! My favourite Scorsese films are jammed packed with male bravado, insecurity, guilt (religious and otherwise) and plenty of violence; not to mention highly quotable! Scorsese’s collaborations with Robert De Niro have birthed modern cinema’s greatest creations; I would be hard pressed to choose a favourite amoung Mean Streets, Taxi Driver, Raging Bull and Goodfellas! And these are not the only shining gems in Scorcese’s crown; his brilliant documentary of The Band in The Last Waltz, his controversial The Last Temptation of Christ (is it wrong that I thought Jesus was sexy?), his excellent remake of the Hong Kong Crime thriller Infernal Affairs; The Departed and his delightfully quirky comedy After Hours are all films I gave a perfect score! What can I really say that has not been said about Scorsese already? Martin Scorsese is a fucking legend! I fucking love him! I fucking love him!


FEMALE TROUBLE (1974) – The Dungeon Review!

Posted in movies, USA with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 23, 2010 by goregirl

“To me, bad taste is what entertainment is all about. If someone vomits watching one of my films, it’s like getting a standing ovation. But one must remember that there is such a thing as good bad taste and bad bad taste.”

Color me self-indulgent, but I decided to review another all-time favourite 70’s flick. John Waters films always make me laugh. I’ve enjoyed every Waters film I’ve seen in varying degrees, even the newer stuff, which many fans don’t care for. I cannot however deny that his newer directorial efforts don’t hold a candle to Pink flamingos, Multiple Maniacs and Female Trouble. Nonetheless, I think Waters is one of the most hilarious and entertaining people alive. If you’ve ever seen him interviewed or read any of his books you’d surely agree. In the man’s own words “If someone vomits watching one of my films, it’s like getting a standing ovation”. His goal is bad taste after all and they don’t call him the Pope of Trash for nothing. So this film isn’t going to be for everyone I guess. But if you like your celluloid weird, offensive, outrageous and an absolute shitload of fun, Female Trouble is the perfect place to start in the wonderfully wacky world of John Waters.

Female Trouble chronicles the life and times of Dawn Davenport. Dawns flunking school and couldn’t care less. She smokes in the ladies room between classes with best friends Concetta and chicklette and eats meatball sandwiches during pop quizzes. All she wanted for Christmas was a pair of cha-cha heels. When she finds a pair of regular shoes under the tree, she is horrified and is told by her father that nice girls don’t wear cha-cha heels. She goes into a rage which ends with her mom pinned under the Christmas tree and Dawn storming out of the house in her revealing nightie. Dawn hitches a ride and ends up impregnated by the driver. A few months later Dawn is chewing through her baby’s umbilical cord after a lonely delivery on a dirty couch. Motherhood is getting on Dawn’s last nerve, but she doesn’t let it cramp her style. She attempts a regular job in a cafe but thieving, stripping and hooking with Concetta and Chicklette brings in a lot more cash. She also has a dream to be famous. Dawn learns of an exclusive hair salon where you must audition before having your hair done. She passes the audition and is soon a regular customer. The pretentious salon owners Donald and Donna Dasher offer Dawn the fame she desires as the test subject in their experiment in beauty and crime.

In Female Trouble, Waters turns normalcy on its head and challenges our obsession with beauty and fame. But don’t worry, no preaching here, it’s all presented in the tackiest, trashiest and funniest way possible. The term “politically correct” has snuck its way into our modern dialog. We’ve become so concerned about offending anyone we’ve taken the joy right out of film making. Waters goal is to offend as often as possible, and Satan bless him! Dawn Davenport calls her daughter Taffy a retard, shackles her to a bed in the attic, hits her with a chair and whips her with a car antenna. This may sound unsavory but it’s actually pretty damn funny. Keep in mind that Divine is a 27-year-old drag queen playing a teenage single mother and Mink Stole who plays her 14 year-old-old daughter Taffy is a 27 year-old woman. At one point in the film Dawn says to Taffy “For fourteen, you don’t look so good”. I think most of the films budget was spent on the wardrobe. There is some truly spectacular tackiness on display here! Huge hair, fabulously revealing garb, and complete and utter beauty madness! There is sex and violence, both of which are amusingly cheap as hell. There is a scene where Aunt Ida has her arm chopped off that is so badly done it garners more laughs than horror! The acid scar Dawn sports in the films final scenes is pretty crummy and fake but it sure is ugly. And Dawn’s sex scene with Earl (Divine plays both roles!) on an abandoned mattress in a field is pure trashy gold!

What I love most about John Waters older films is the great cast. They are not extraordinary actors and actresses they’re just fun, wacky and willing to do anything. Exactly the type of friends I would want to have if I was making a movie! I get the feeling everyone had a real blast making these films. The main cast with the exception of Edith Massey were all in their mid to late 20’s when they made Female Trouble. It’s not the least bit unusual to see 20-somethings playing high school students but overweight drag queens are considerably less common. The always enjoyable Mink Stole plays Dawn’s daughter Taffy which is a rather frightening but amusing stretch. Taffy is one of my favourite characters in the film. Taffy sports these really short frilly little girl dresses and rouged up cheeks, and pouts, twists and contorts her face as she speaks with pure contempt. She delivers some pretty freaking hilarious lines! Here is one of the best…

Taffy’s mock car accident scene alone is worth the price of admission and is nothing short of magnificent! Early in the film Waters uses a child actress to play young Taffy and even she is pretty bloody funny! Edith Massey plays Aunt Ida and she has a weird robotic like delivery that somehow adds to her charm. Aunt Ida refuses to accept her nephew Gator is straight and uses every opportunity to try to change his mind. Aunt Ida’s biggest fear is that her nephew might marry a woman, buy a house and have a child, because the life of a heterosexual is a sick and boring life. You won’t soon forget Aunt Ida’s sexy black jumpsuit! Gator is Dawn’s hairdresser who she eventually marries and divorces. Gator, played by Michael Potter is the least dynamic of the main characters. Potter doesn’t stand a chance surrounded by so many over-the-top performances. It’s not terribly surprising that Dawn gets sick of Gator and kicks him to the curb. High school friends and partners in crime Concetta played by Cookie Mueller and Chicklette played by Susan Walsh are full of spunk with hair to match and are the ideal mates for Dawn. David Lochary and Mary Vivian Pearce are perfect as snotty salon owners Donald and Donna Dasher. They take looking and being fabulous very seriously. Wearing the same outfit for more than a few hours is a serious offense. Of course it is the aptly named Divine that is the real tour de force in Female Trouble. There has never been, nor will there ever be anyone like Divine. Daring, outrageous, charismatic, funny and indeed “DIVINE”! You’ll marvel at Dawn’s big one woman show where she does a trampoline act, rubs herself with fish and queries her audience; “Who wants to die for art?”! And if you’re like me, you’ll ask yourself, “Will mainlining liquid mascara make me more fabulous?”

I originally purchased Multiple Maniacs and Female Trouble from a mail-order catalog which I believe I had sent away for from the back of a Fangoria magazine. It was some time in the mid 80’s and the catalog was full of bootleg VHS and BETA tapes I had been dying to get my hands on. Among other titles, I purchased Waters films; Female Trouble and Multiple Maniacs. The trouble with buying bootlegs is you never really knew what you would end up with. My copy of Female Trouble had about 10 seconds of Star Trek: The Wrath of Kahn at the beginning! I never did replace it with a proper version. It was a bit weird watching this on DVD for the first time. It seemed wrong not to have a few seconds of Wrath of Kahn to watch before it started! Female Trouble is a low-budget film which adds much to its trashy appeal, but I was surprised they weren’t able to clean the print up a bit. To be honest, it doesn’t look much different than my VHS copy. More special features would have also been welcomed, but they do include commentary from Waters, and as previously mentioned, the man is very entertaining!

Female Trouble is a buffet of bad taste that charms the pants off of me and makes me laugh and laugh and laugh some more! This film is just too much fun and I fucking love it! Highest of recommendations!

Dungeon Rating: 5/5

Directed By: John Waters

Starring: Divine, David Lochary, Mary Vivian Pearce, Mink Stole, Edith Massey, Cookie Mueller, Susan Walsh, Michael Potter, Ed Peranio, Paul Swift, George Figgs, Susan Lowe