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Female Trouble (1974)

NC-17 | | Comedy, Crime | 28 March 1984 (France)
A spoiled schoolgirl runs away from home, gets pregnant while hitch-hiking, and ends up as a fashion model for a pair of beauticians who like to photograph women committing crimes.




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Child actors perform a 'kid-friendly' table read version of John Water's notorious 1972 X-rated cult classic film, Pink Flamingos.

Director: John Waters
Stars: Madelyn Beckett, Taylor Howard-Goergens, Dexter Shaffer


Cast overview, first billed only:
David Lochary ...
Cookie Mueller ...
Susan Walsh ...
Michael Potter ...
Ed Peranio ...
Paul Swift ...
George Figgs ...
George Hulse ...
Margie Skidmore ...
Berenica Cipcus ...
Mean Girl


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


She has a lot of problems See more »


Comedy | Crime

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

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

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

28 March 1984 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Rotten Mind, Rotten Face  »


Box Office


$25,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show more on  »

Technical Specs


| (16 mm) | (original length)

Sound Mix:

(2001 re-release)|


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The scenes in the Dashers' residence were filmed in John Waters' own apartment at the time, with many of his own belongings. Another corner of his apartment was used for the part of the salon where the Dashers first interview Dawn Davenport. See more »


When Dawn, Concetta, and Chicklette are in the school bathroom complaining about school and Christmas, both Concetta and Chicklette hold up a can of hair spray to apply to their hairdos, but it is obvious no spray is coming out of the can nor does the can make a spraying sound. See more »


Dawn Davenport: I've DONE everything a mother can do: I've locked her in her room, I've beat her with the car aerial. Nothing changes her. It's HARD being a loving mother!
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 »


Referenced in Der Todesking (1990) See more »


Written by John Andrews
Performed by The Frogmen
Courtesy of Go-Jo Music
See more »

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User Reviews

A film so perfect, it's revolting
19 November 1999 | by See all my reviews

"Female Trouble" is one of John Water's best movies, probably the best of his pre-respectable (read: pre-"Hairspray") flicks. Posessing a much more strong (and bizarre) plotline than the also brilliant "Pink Flamingos", "Female Trouble" documents the exploits of Dawn Davenport, a horrible juvenial delinquent turned criminal played by the unbeatable Divine.

This was Water's last film to features his entire original ensemble of actors (Divine, David Lochary, Mink Stole, Mary Vivian Pierce, and Edith Massey) and each has a memorable and hilarious role. Stole steals the show as Dawn's "retarded" 14 year old daughter, but Edith Massey is also great as Aunt Ida, who constantly urges her nephew Gator to turn gay ("The world of the heterosexual is a sick and boring life!").

The scene where Dawn hits Ida on the head with a fish is worth the whole price of admission. Recommended!!!

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