A Dirty Shame [Import]
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When prissy, prickly Sylvia Stickles (Tracey Ullman) suffers a head injury during a traffic altercation, she's, er, revived by self-appointed sexual missionary Ray-Ray Perkins (Johnny Knoxville) and is transformed into an insatiable, take-no-prisoners sex maniac. Yes, it's a John Waters film. Yes, it's filthy. No, it's not as hilarious and sustained as you'd like it to be. It works for a while, though: Ullman, never a stingy comedienne, does everything Waters dares her to do without hesitation; words cannot describe the perversely sporting delight with which she mounts a water bottle during a round of "The Hokey Pokey" at an old folks' home. And there's some fun to be had when Sylvia's emancipation leads her Baltimore 'burb to new heights of ecstasy, freeing her large-breasted daughter Caprice (Selma Blair) while horrifying husband Vaughn (Chris Isaak) and her hardline mother Big Ethel (Suzanne Shepherd, hysterical) in the process. It's also packed with the standard cameos, the most satisfying of which is good old Patty Hearst at a Sex Addicts Anonymous encounter. But, for all the nasty, necessary glee, the movie feels inescapably been-there-done-that, and you can't help but wish this was 1972 and Divine was on hand to prowl for dog droppings. The most shocking thing about A Dirty Shame is how desperate and tiresome its anarchy becomes.--Steve Wiecking --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
I bought it sight unseen because of the "R Rating" as opposed to the "NC-17 theatrical release" with the hopes of more. It has been edited mercilessly. ALL profanity had been dubbed over, they completely cut out the highlight of the "Hokey Pokey" scene (Those of you who have seen the theatrical release know what I'm talking about), and they even pixelated the hand of a character flipping the bird.
I can't believe John Waters would let one of his films be butchered to such an extent. There are no bonus features (except trailers) and all the best stuff has been cut out. Shame on New Line for their horribly misleading marketing.
Don't be conned like I was, it is a dirty shame.
Let me start by saying that if you are one of those uptight moviegoers who has been brainwashed into thinking that such snooze-inducing fare as Shrek, Harry Potter or anything starring Brad Pitt or Tom Cruise is the be-all-end-all, this movie is definitely not your speed. For the small percentage of you who actually "get it" and can watch Desperate Living, Serial Mom or Polyester multiple times and never get bored, you will find lots to love here.
That trademark Waters' vibe starts buzzing as soon as the dialogue begins. The soundtrack, peppered with obscure novelty ditties, and raunchy instrumental oldies is bullseye-perfect.
Just like Melanie Griffith in Cecil B. Demented, Ullmann sinks her teeth into the role and her rubbery face and sketch comedy background allow her to immediately adjust her style to Waters' material. Johnny Knoxville is wickedly charismatic, and Selma Blair is hilarious yet surprisingly vulnerable as the ridiculously over-endowed "Ursula Udders". (You just wanna put a raincoat over that poor girl at times). Mink Stole returns in a meatier role than she's had in years (plus a purposely-unflattering hairstyle to say the least).
The story was well paced and let it not be said this film dragged in certain spots. Waters' knows how to keep the action going and purposely keeps all his movies within a 90-minute running time. The finale featuring the head-butting was sort of lost on me during my initial viewing and some may be put off by its somewhat repetitive nature, but it wasn't until I realized that this was the "new sex act", that I accepted it for what it was.Read more ›