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A Dirty Shame (2004)

NC-17 | | Comedy | 24 September 2004 (USA)
1:54 | Trailer

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An uptight, middle-aged, repressed woman turns into a sex addict after getting hit on the head, and she then falls into an underground subculture of sex addicts in suburban Baltimore.



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Nick Noble ...
Weird Paperboy (as Nicholas E.I. Noble)
Lucy Newman-Williams ...
Neuter Yuppie Woman
Scott Morgan ...
Neuter Yuppie Man
David Moretti ...
Papa Bear (as Dave Moretti)
Jeffrey Auerbach ...


Middle-aged, sexually repressed Sylvia Stickles is the subject of this John Water's film, set in North Baltimore. She refuses to have sex with her husband, Vaughn Stickles, and keeps her overly-endowed daughter, Caprice, locked in her room, while she serves home detention for moral depravity charges. Sylvia, together with her mother Big Ethel, lead a group calling themselves "neuters" that promotes decency on Harford Road. When Sylvia is accidentally hit on the head by a lawnmower hanging out of a passing pick-up truck, however, her sexual behavior is changed completely from prude to prostitute. She meets the sex addicted sexual healer Ray Ray Perkins, becoming his twelfth apostle of sex in a journey of pleasure and orgasm. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Threatening the very limits of common decency.



Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated NC-17 for pervasive sexual content | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

24 September 2004 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Adictos al sexo  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$15,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$29,384 (USA) (17 September 2004)


$1,339,668 (USA) (5 November 2004)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (R-rated)

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The scene where Sylvia changes her clothes in the back of the cab is based on a true story. John Waters once had to change clothes in the back of a cab on his way from an airport straight to a book signing. See more »


Before running out of gas, the car is turned off and in park but is still driving. See more »


Big Ethel: You going to the movies, Dave?
Dingy Dave: Huh?
Big Ethel: [watching him scratch his ass] Hell, you're pickin' your seat, aren't you?
See more »


Spoofs Carmen, Baby (1967) See more »


The Pussy Cat Song
Performed by Connie Vannet
Written by J. Gilday, Connie Vannett and Joe Skidmore (as Joseph Skidmore)
Under license from Concert Products
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

A head injury!
14 October 2004 | by (New York) – See all my reviews

The perverts have invaded the neighborhood and we're not going to take it anymore! Gays and lesbians are everywhere as well as all kinds of disgusting lewd behavior. Well, what are the righteous citizens to do? Organize and try to get rid of them, but they're outnumbered!

Thus seems to be the premise for this hysterical John Waters picture. The promise for an irreverent take on pornography in suburbia dissolves as soon as it starts. Mr. Waters shows a milder side to himself, as it's been the case in his latest movies. But with that said, even a minor Waters is a hilarious one. Sure, the jokes get a bit stale, but the film has so many funny situations that anyone with an open mind will appreciate this kind of humor.

Tracey Ullman blends the perfect amount of seriousness and insanity playing her Sylvia Stickles, the woman who comes alive as she is hit in the head! Her scene at the nursing home playing the Hokey Pokey will become a classic Waters moment. Chris Isaak, Selma Blair, Suzanne Shepherd and Johnny Knoxville are also good.

45 of 60 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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