Reviewed by John Perry
Rating: 10 Beans
ong before going mainstream with "Hairspray", "Serial Mom" and "Cry-Baby", cult director John Waters became notorious with his gross-out, bad-taste extravaganza, "Pink Flamingos".
Filled with some of the most horrendous acting and disgustingly twisted scenes in movie history, the film is still widely acclaimed by independent moviemakers today. Every rule of good taste isn't only broken by Waters, it's trampled and crapped upon.
Divine, a 300 pound drag queen, plays Babs Johnson, the "Filthiest Person Alive". Hiding out from the hounding media, she/he/it lives in a cheap trailer with her family. Mama (Edith Massey) spends her days in a playpen wearing a bra and girdle playing with eggs. Her son Crackers (Danny Mills) lives out in a shack out back, doing kinky things with chickens (and, instead of special effects, Waters uses REAL chickens!). Her travelling companion Cotton (Mary Vivian Pearce) has a thing for watching Crackers and the chickens go at it. Their enjoyable secret life of shocking people is corrupted, however, by two jealous competitors.
Connie and Raymond Marble (Mink Stole, David Lochary) live in Baltimore, trying to track down Babs and take her reign as the Filthiest Person Alive. Their favorite past-time is kidnapping female hitchhikers, impregnating them with their chauffeur, and selling the babies to lesbian couples. Also, Raymond has a thing for flashing Catholic school girls in nearby parks, tying foreign objects to his... organ.
Sound shocking yet? Well, there's more. The film freely exhibits scenes of cannibalism, incest, bestiality, bodily functions... you name it. There are so many scenes in "Pink Flamingos" where you say, "No, they're not gonna show that..." seconds before it's flashing before your very eyes.
Waters shows here that you don't need a lot of money to make a funny movie, though most of the humour relies on all-out bad taste and really bad acting. There is also an array of memorable one-liners to be cherished (my fave: when Connie Marble says, "There are two types of people. My type of people, and assholes. It's rather obvious what category you fall into.").
If you're in the mood for a bad movie, you can't go wrong with "Pink Flamingos". However, be advised: it's 100 times funnier when you're not sober.
Other reviews for this movie:
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