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Female Trouble (1974)

7.3
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Ratings: 7.3/10 from 4,634 users  
Reviews: 57 user | 35 critic

A spoiled schoolgirl runs away from home, gets pregnant while hitchhiking, and ends up as a fashion model for a pair of beauticians who like to photograph women committing crimes.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
David Lochary ...
Mary Vivian Pearce ...
...
...
Cookie Mueller ...
Susan Walsh ...
Michael Potter ...
Ed Peranio ...
Wink
Paul Swift ...
Butterfly
George Figgs ...
Dribbles
...
Vikki
George Hulse ...
Teacher
Margie Skidmore ...
School Snitch
Berenica Cipcus ...
Mean Girl
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Storyline

The life and times of Dawn Davenport, showing her progress from loving schoolgirl to crazed mass murderer - all of which stems from her parents' refusal to buy her cha-cha heels for Christmas. She runs away from home, is raped, becomes a single mother, criminal and glamorous model before her inevitable rendezvous with the electric chair... Written by Michael Brooke <michael@everyman.demon.co.uk>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

She has a lot of problems See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Crime

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated NC-17 for explicit sexuality and nudity | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

28 March 1984 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Rotten Mind, Rotten Face  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$25,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (16 mm) | (original length)

Sound Mix:

(2001 re-release)|

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Many of the principal actors' and crews' parents played the jurors in the final courtroom scene, including the mother and brother of David Lochary (Donald Dasher) and the mother of set designer Vincent Peranio. See more »

Goofs

When Taffy throws a tantrum and is taken to the bed in the attic, she reaches for the manacles although she is being restrained against her will. See more »

Quotes

Gator: Hi, brat. Is your mother home? I've a little going away present for her.
Taffy: [after spitting in his face] Hey, Mother, there's a shithead here to see you!
See more »

Crazy Credits

For Charles Watson (the Manson Family member). Waters' prison visits to Watson inspired the "crime is beauty" theme of the film, and Waters used a toy wooden helicopter Watson made for him in the credits. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Ban the Sadist Videos! Part 2 (2006) See more »

Soundtracks

Merry, Merry, Merry, Merry Xmas
Written by Ruth Lyon
Performed by Ruby Wright with Cliff Lash and his Orchestra and the Dick Noel Singers
Courtesy of Ace Records Ltd.
by arrangement with Celebrity Licensing Inc.
See more »

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User Reviews

 
The film that introduced Dawn Davenport to an ungrateful world
11 December 2005 | by (Mountains of Madness) – See all my reviews

Although John Waters is best known for "Pink Flamingos", his two best films are "Female Trouble" and "Desperate Living". Why? Well, as far as "Female Trouble" is concerned, it is the film that invented Dawn Davenport (Divine), one of the trashiest white schoolgirl tramps ever to strut her stuff in a pair of cha-cha heels. Dawn's amazing life is documented in this film and it's a cracker from beginning to end. You will laugh, you will cry, you will vomit and you will die as you behold the deliciously disgraceful antics of the indefatigable queen of crime and sleaze.

All the delightful Waters regulars (the achingly gorgeous Edith Massey, the fantastically filthy David Lochary, the marvellous Mink Stole and the putrid Ms. Mary Vivian Pearce) are paraded about like proud circus exhibits as Waters' weaves a rags to bitches story of one woman's rise from the suburbs of Baltimore to her fall in a city without pity.

Certainly this was one of the first films to explore the issue of criminals becoming celebrities. Dawn Davenport's ascent to the ceiling of crime is hilarious and perceptive and Waters clearly knew where all this was going. For mine, Waters lost his zing after "Desperate Living" when his movies got softer and his characters started turning up on TV shows like "Wally George", "Jerry Springer" and the earlier "Oprah" eps. What was fresh when Waters started doing it felt redundant when he kept doing it into the eighties and nineties.

Divine is, was and always will be a legend, and I consider myself fortunate that I once spent half an hour chatting with the great man and actor. Vincent Peranio's production design is spectacularly obnoxious and Van Smith's costumes, as always, are knitted from the threads of trash heaven.

Waters does not put a foot wrong and ends proceedings on a surprisingly emotional note.


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