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Myra Breckinridge (1970) - Plot Summary Poster

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Summaries

  • Myron Breckinridge is waiting for her sex-change operation while a stoned surgeon stumbles into the operating room. Before the drugged doctor begins Myron's operation, he counsels him. Myron persists and the doctor goes through with it. An enthusiastic audience observing the operation applauds the medical achievement and rises in a standing ovation. After the operation, Myron arrives in Hollywood as Myra while in the rest of the film Myron pops up from time to time as Myra's alter ego. Myra goes to an acting academy owned by her uncle, Buck Loner, a former cowboy star. The real reason for Myra's arrival is to claim her half of Uncle Buck's estate, which she says she's entitled to. Buck Loner stalls by giving her a job teaching the history of motion pictures. Buck Loner has several friends. One of them is Letitia Van Allen, an ancient Hollywood talent scout. The sex-starved septuagenarian runs an acting agency "for leading men only."

  • After undergoing gender reassignment surgery, an aspiring actress travels to Hollywood, where she also wants to make a claim on her wealthy uncle's estate.


Spoilers

The synopsis below may give away important plot points.

Synopsis

  • Myron Breckinridge (Rex Reed) is already waiting at the surgery room to have his pinus removed by the surgeon (John Carradine). The scenery is a bit weird anyway, because there is public watching the surgery, clapping, making comments, and there is in the background a lady (Thordis Brandt) kind of dancing /cracking a whip. Myron can't wait to have it removed, and he is self-assured when the surgeon tells him that it's the first time he's going to perform the surgery, and tells him that once cut, it won't grown on him again. They compare the surgery to circumcision several times.

    Cut to Myron, walking by the street and pushing away a cigarette butt from the sign of Veronica Lake. He kind of dances with a girl dressed in a sort of very short and showy wedding dress. They both end up dancing on the street and they get onto a taxi together. This scene gets mixed with Shirley Temple dancing and singing in a black-and-white film.

    The mushroom top of a nuclear bomb. Cut to a scene of a b-series sci-fi film, where women are the only human survivors after the holocaust. Myron and his partenaire are at the rooftop of Chateau Marmon, staring at the scenery of a big placard sign with a plastic-model cheerleader scantily-clad advertising something.

    Myron becomes Myra Breckinridge (Raquel Welch), and moves to West Hollywood in a flashy car to attend her uncle Buck Loner (John Huston)'s academy. One of the teachers is hugging to a tree in a dramatic way, and telling his students that they should appreciate and become anything, including a tree. Buck tells Myra that she has the potential to become a star. When she tells Buck her name, there are images of houses being blown-up. Myra tells Buck that she's the widow of his late nephew Myron. Buck can't almost believe her. Myra tells him that there was no insurance money, so that she's got not a penny in the world. Buck would like to caress and shag her, but he tries to keep composure. Myra tells him that there was a lost will of Myron, and Myra wants a part of the business. Buck doesn't want to mix lawyers into the matter, so he finally welcomes Myra, who finally will accept a position in the academy earning 1,000 a month, which must have been a huge salary at the time if she keeps quiet about her salary.

    A student called Irving Amadeus (Calvin Lockhart) who has been in the academy for fourteen years tells her that teachers don't last long in the academy. Posture will be Myra's subject. The student will show Myra around.

    Buck admits that he gets turned on by watching Myra on tv. Irving shows Myron around.

    A mock acting activity which involves everybody laughing about a naked woman. Irving is asked whether he's gay, because of his mannerisms. Irving seems unconvinced, and says that the academy doesn't push students to go out and look for a life outside.

    During a session with a masseuse (Thordis Brandt), Buck talks to his lawyer about the Myra situation. Irving leaves Myra in the classroom, who takes special notice of a Polish student, very handsome but stupid. Buck arrives and makes everybody uncomfortable with his frank personality. Myra tells Buck that the students are inept in front of them. The cute student, called Rusty Godowski (Roger Herren) says that he doesn't like Myra at all. Some female students say that they like Myra, but that she's weird. Irving ends up the conversation because he says he needs to retouch his makeup.

    Leticia Van Allen (Mae West) is welcomed at the agency by plenty of attractive men offering her bouquets of flowers, presents.... She accepts to see one in particular. Leticia makes his secretary to choose one of them. He looks like an actor on a casting, a very attractive man (Tom Selleck), with a suit and a briefcase. But she shows him a huge bed in her office, so the casting becomes a kind of sexual transaction. Images of a black-and-white scene of Abbot and Costello in which they are moving very long logs from one place to another. As Leticia dismisses the young man saying that she'll use him as a summer replacement, the sexual imagery is clear, and she shouts "Next!". The last of the "applicants" looks like a cowboy. She asks him how tall he is without the horse, and he says six feet seven inches. She tells him to forget about the six feet and concentrate in the seven inches. More logs going back and forth.

    Chorus music for a radio commercial. Myra reminiscences about the Andrew Sisters and tells Mary Ann Pringle (Farrah Fawcett) that with voice training, she could become a star, but Mary Ann is only interested in getting married and having children. Myra gets flustered and angered by her ignorance and the population explosion she will create with those intended four children. Myron and Myra argue about Mary Ann's case. She tries to put him to bed, kisses him and they make love. He dreams of food and finally eats a banana. Suddenly, Myron is alone, jacking off until he comes.

    Myra tries to change the way students learn, forget about the truth and make a good performance instead. Buck interrupts her: he knows that all his students are bad, so he doesn't want Myra to rise their hopes. They talk in whispers, until she punches him in his face, and then, she uses that punch as proof that acting makes actions and feeling feel credible, e.g. Buck's face of pain, but that they don't have to be true. The students give Buck an applause for the demonstration.

    A police officer stops Leticia, who gives him her card, as it looks as though somebody is following her. Leticia makes a pass at every man she finds. Mario Giuseppe Lionardo Something Something Bistriani (Nelson Sardelli) waits for Leticia to give her a message from Italy. He kisses and praises Leticia's beauty, while giving her a letter to read. Mario, with his heavy accent, says that he's in love with her. Leticia Van Allen offers him a job, but he refuses. Mario leaves, and Leticia wants to have his blood test.

    Myra, dressed up as a jockey rider, talks to Buck, who has discovered that Myron was never married. Myra shows him a marriage certificate issued in Mexico. Buck gets angry.

    Buck and one of his accolites talk about the destruction of morals in America. Meanwhile, a couple is making out at the café, and the cops are hitting on some demonstrators.

    At the academy, most students look more interested in frolicking than in learning. Rusty goes to a private tuition with Myra, as Mary Ann has realised that Myra seems to pick on Rusty. Myra thinks that he's got a special talent. Rusty says because he broke four ribs years ago, it'll make it very difficult to succeed as an actor and his posture is horrible. Myra starts imagining that she can listen to Glenn Miller playing, and she tries to make Rusty dance, but Rusty is very awkward. Rusty can't stand up straight because of those damaged ribs, so Myra wants to see the damage for herself, and proceeds to tell Rusty to take off his shirt and t-shirt. She admires his physique. He faces a wall, and Myra pulls his jeans down.

    Rusty's girlfriend is jealous. Leticia arrives to an academy party with plenty of students naked or with body-painting (Luanne Roberts). Myron goes around checking everybody.

    Buck is buttoning up his pants. Myra arrives. She tells Mary Ann that she is going to recommend her for a job, but the young lady is not happy at all. Mary inquires, thinking that Rusty may be the problem.

    Leticia arrives with a full entourage. Buck butt-kisses her, but Leticia realises that everybody is smoking grass. Myra says that Myron used to write books about films. Mrs van Allen thinks that Myron must have been gay. Myra talks about students becoming stars, and Leticia likes what she hears. Myra recommends Rusty to her. Buck tries to spoil it all by mentioning that Rusty has violated his parole. Both Myra and Leticia get turned on by talking of studs (Michael Stearns).

    Judge Frederic D. Cannon (William Hopper) says that only the Riffle Association stands between the USA and its invasion by the USSR, and lets Rusty go free. He hugs Mary Ann, who was waiting for him. Myra hugs both of them.

    Leticia Van Allen's performance is diva-like and over the top. The three of them watch her. At the night club, an ugly Cigarette Girl (Toni Basil) approaches them, and Myra wonder aloud what normal is. Mary Ann says that normal is what the majority of society does. Myra doesn't like that answer, although she smiles. Rusty doesn't think about it much.

    Buck makes a pass at mature ladies. Images of Marilyn Monroe (herself), at a swimming-pool supposedly naked. Buck comes back to Myra with more one-on-one time.

    Dressed as a nurse, Myra measures him, and makes him get almost naked again. Myra tells him to pee on a bottle. Myra wants now to bend over so that she'll take his temperature. She finds it suspicious when he refuses until a doctor arrives. Myra ties him down and puts a termomether on his rear end. Myra insists that this is no joke. Myra undresses, insisting that she's going to educate him. Myra rides him like crazy, while he tries to resist. She uses a strip-on dildo to rape him. He's not enjoying it at all.

    Images to suggest sexual imagery, topped by another nuclear bomb mushroom. Myra unties Rusty,in crazy unkempt hair. Rusty leaves with her permission. He even thanks her for the trouble she's taken in educating him.

    Myra phones Mary Ann, and tells her to pop in. Myra thinks that her victory will be complete if she seduces Mary Ann. The girl arrives crying, while Myron tries to stop Myra to no avail. Mary Ann thinks that Rusty is sick of her, of women... Mary Ann is worried she won't see him again.

    Myra convinces Mary Ann in putting on a male pyjamas. Myra offers consolation to Mary Ann, while Myron goes into bed with them. Leticia phones to say that Rusty has performed wonderfully in bed.

    Charlie Flager Jr. (George Furth) has no job, and he offers Buck to help him to get rid of Myra. She arrives dressed in red. Myra first paints her nails and then cries.

    Dr. Randolph Spencer Montag (Roger C. Camel) will arrive at the end of the week as a witness of Myra and Myron's marriage which entitles her to half of the state. The renown dentist is working on a patient (Geneviève Waïte) which looks and speaks ridiculously.

    The dentist travels by plane, but he falls sleep. Charlie Flager Sr (Robert P. Lieb) tells his son to go straight to the point. Myra explains that Myron's body was never found. So, finally, Myra explains that she is Myron, Buck's fag nephew. She takes off her thong and throws it to Buck's face. Flager Jr faints.

    Mary Ann rejects Myra's advances. She doesn't want to have sex with her, but she needs her as a friend. Myra realises that it's still Rusty between them. Mary Ann says that Rusty was very gentle with her. Myra is rejected again. Mary Ann wishes that Myra were a man.

    Myron runs over Myra, who flips over and is sent flying. The ugly cigarette girl stares at Myron, left for dead on the road. The cig girl tries to flirt. Myron wakes up at hospital, with the surgeon and nurse of the beginning appear to check on him. He notices that he's returned to his male look, so he starts shouting "Where are my tits? Where are my tits?".

    Images of Myron and Myra dancing and getting into the taxi while ending credits roll by.

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