A suburban housewife's world falls apart when her pornographer husband admits he's serially unfaithful to her, her daughter gets pregnant, and her son is suspected of being the foot-fetishist who's been breaking local women's feet.
A Baltimore sandwich shop employee becomes an overnight sensation when photographs he's taken of his weird family become the latest rage in the art world. The young man is called "Pecker" ... See full summary »
The life and times of Baltimore film maker and midnight movie pioneer, John Waters. Intercut with a 1972 interview of Waters are clips from his first films and recent interviews with his ... See full summary »
John Waters' second film, shot on 8mm, and featuring Divine for the first time. Essentially a plotless collage of random incidents involving sex, drugs, religion and 'The Wizard of Oz', it ... See full summary »
Francine Fishpaw is an upper middle class suburban housewife in Baltimore. Unfortunately for this "good Christian woman", the money to support her lifestyle comes from her husband's porno theater, the neighbors are protesting, her son is the notorious "Baltimore Stomper", her daughter is knocked up by a local hoodlum, and her husband is having an affair with his secretary. Written by
Stephen J. LeBlanc <email@example.com>
During the credits, the title song "Polyester" describes the action seen on screen, leading the audience through a helicopter shot of the suburbs into Francine's house (commenting on its French Provincial decor) and upstairs to meet her. See more »
There are plenty of shocking and bizarre films out there, but no one does it like John Waters. Even tamer films of his like 'Hairspray' and 'Cry-Baby' have some characters and scenes that'll make your jaw drop. And fortunately for fans of his work he hasn't sold out or retired and I don't think the latter will happen for quite some time. This 1981 cult classics features many of Waters' famous trademarks like oddball characters, shocking images, bad taste, etc., but one thing sets it apart from the rest: Odorama! A big fan of William Castle, John not only made a great film with 'Polyester' he also came up with a clever gimmick. If you want the full experience, hunt down a copy of New Line Cinema's The John Waters Collection Volume 2, which comes with both this film and 1977's 'Desperate Living,' and a replica of the original Odorama card. But be warned, as Dr. Quakenshaw says, "You will experience some odors that may shock you!"
Pros: John Waters assembled a great bunch of people for this film and each actor creates a memorable character. Plenty of bizarre and hilarious situations and dialogue. The Odorama gimmick is cleverly used. The music, which features a couple songs sung by star Tab Hunter and a variety of styles, is perfect. The film is meant to be a stab at middle-American and it's a good one at that. Well-paced. Fabulous production design and wardrobe, which are over-the-top in most cases. Waters makes great use of the beautiful Baltimore homes and scenery.
Cons: Hasn't aged terribly well. Somethings that are supposed to be really funny aren't.
Final thoughts: I may be in the minority, but I think this John Water's best work to date. Or at least his best work in the 80s. It's not for everyone, but if you're the kind of film lover who enjoys 90 minutes of off-the-wall humor and aren't easily offended then this might be up your alley.
My rating: 4.5/5
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