The John Waters Thread

Actually, Queen Carlotta seems tailor-made for Divine. Not that Edith Massey didn’t do a good job with it but can you imagine Divine in that role?

“I’m gonna get an abortion! And I can’t wait!” — Lu-Lu Fishpaw

One night in Berlin I went to a John Waters marathon at a movie theater…started at 11:00pm and they showed Pink Flamingos, Female Trouble and then Polyestor. The theater was sold out. The crowd was more than a little odd, but it was a night I will never forget.

Love his early stuff, but have to agree that of late, he seems to have lost his edge. Maybe it is too hard to shock, maybe the death of Divine, but something is missing.

“They aren’t the right ones, I wanted cha-cha heels, black ones!”

“Nice girls don’t wear cha-cha heels!”

In case anyone was wondering, Lust in the Dust was directed by Paul Bartel (another terrific off-beat director), although with Divine and Tab Hunter in the cast, it’s an easy mistake to make.I agree with your assessment of “Cecil B. Demented”, but I’d like to make a few comments about your other critiques. I disagree that Waters’ “style” was all but gone in “Cry-Baby”; in fact, if anything, he returned to that “style” with that film. In fact, the scene where Pepper’s kids talk about stealing hubcaps is lifted directly from the screenplay of “Flamingos Forever”, the film he never got to make due to the untimely death of Divine. The screenplay is in Waters’ “Trash Trio”, if you want to read it. It would have been his trash masterpiece! I love “Serial Mom”. Waters and Kathleen Turner are a match made in…well, wherever matches like that are made. I don’t understand the term “imitating himself”. Perhaps you mean that he was reverting to the type of film he made before “Hairspray”–if so, what’s wrong with that? To me, he had the money to make his type of film with production values and cast he could finally afford. “Pecker” was, IMO, Waters’ “full circle” film. I was pleased to see him return to the Baltimore “hick town” feel of his earlier films, not to mention his ongoing mocking of Catholicism. Unfortunately, I think he went too far back with the last two films; he seemingly wanted to make trashy films with equally trashy characters, but didn’t really have anything new to contribute. If you’re going to accuse Waters of “imitating himself”, these are two great examples of what I think you were trying to say. One more thing: if you read the screenplay of “Flamingos Forever”, you should be able to picture every frame in your mind. I was able to, and to this day, I regret that he was never able to film it. Now, a few more quotes: [ul]
[li]“Oh, well, if it"s good enough for Gertrude Stein…”–DL[/li][li]“I don’t want no white man looking at my Tampax!”–DL[/li][li]“This white dude just jumped out and stomped on that honky lady’s feet!”–POLYESTER[/li][li]“FULL OF GRACE!”–PECKER[/li][li]“Aintcha got tits? Stick 'em out, for Christ’s sake!”–CB[/li][li]“You made Gator leave! I got somethin’ for your face, MOTHER FUCKER!!!”–FT[/li][/ul]

So, what is it about his movies that people like?
I haven’t seen any of his movies, but I’ve heard about them. I’m curious about what’s appealing about his movies. Is there any value buried underneath all the sleaze? Or is it the sleaze value that appeals to people?

Does all the weirdness conceal a strong amount of humanity, or are the movies just 100% cynical?

You were raped?” I always feel ashamed for laughing at that.

Its fun to show it to your square friends and shock them.