7.2/10
4,941
59 user 46 critic

Desperate Living (1977)

A neurotic society woman murders her husband with the help of her maid and, on the lam, escape to Mortville, a homeless community ruled over by a fascist queen.

Director:

John Waters

Writer:

John Waters
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Liz Renay ... Muffy St. Jacques
Mink Stole ... Peggy Gravel
Susan Lowe ... Mole McHenry
Edith Massey ... Queen Carlotta
Mary Vivian Pearce ... Princess Coo-Coo
Jean Hill ... Grizelda Brown
Brook Yeaton ... Bosley Jr. (as Brook Blake)
Karen Gerwig Karen Gerwig ... Beth
Jay Allan Jay Allan ... Kid
Al Strapelli Al Strapelli ... Doctor Evans
George Stover ... Bosley Gravel
Turkey Joe Turkey Joe ... Motorcycle Cop
Willie Brooks Willie Brooks ... Pieman
James Yeaton James Yeaton ... Dead Bum
Ed Peranio Ed Peranio ... Lieutenant Wilson
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Storyline

A rich housewife murders her husband with the help of her overweight maid, and the two go on the run, ending up in Mortville, a town providing refuge for criminals. They shack up with a lesbian ex-wrestler and her murderess lover, before running into the tyrannical Queen Carlotta, ruler of Mortville... Written by Michael Brooke <michael@everyman.demon.co.uk>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

It isn't very pretty.....


Certificate:

X | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Last movie in which Mary Vivian Pearce plays a main character. See more »

Goofs

When Mole first meets Peggy and Grizelda she tells them that there are no toilets in Mortville, but at the lesbian bar there are toilets, where Peggy is harassed by the 'bathroom pervert'. See more »

Quotes

Princess Coo-Coo: Oh Herbert, we're safe now. I'm sorry I had to drag you all that way, but those silly nudists wanted to BURY you! Oh I love you too, my darling- Mother can't hurt us now. We'll get married tonight. You don't look so well, I hope you perk up for our honeymoon!
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Crazy Credits

Desperate Living's opening credits appear beside an overhead shot of a formal table setting, in which a maid serves a cooked rat as the main course, which is salted and eaten. See more »

Alternate Versions

In Italy, the film was heavily dubbed, censored, and retitled "Punk Story." See more »

Connections

Referenced in No Stopping the Stover (2016) See more »

User Reviews

The CHILDREN are having SEX!!!!
16 December 2003 | by lolee1126See all my reviews

This is one of my all time favorites! John Waters is the coolest!! I only wish he still made movies like this. Pink Flamingos comes in a close second, but none live up to DESPERATE LIVING!!! Mink Stole and Edith Massey play their parts to perfection.


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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

2 November 1980 (West Germany) See more »

Also Known As:

Mortville See more »

Filming Locations:

Baltimore, Maryland, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$65,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Charm City Productions See more »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

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