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Mommie Dearest (1981)

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NOTE: This commentary is only available on the 2006 "Hollywood Royalty Edition."

Commentaries on this disc:

Commentary 1: Filmmaker (and fan) John Waters Rating:7.6/10 (8 votes) [graph]Login to vote or review
Reviewed by ontheroof on June 10th, 2008:Find all reviews by ontheroof
John Waters gives great commentary, though here he falls a little bit short of his usual. The conceit of the entire commentary is that he feels Mommie Dearest is a legitimately great movie (with a few missteps that he mentions) and should not be appreciated solely for its camp value. Specifically, he defends Faye Dunaway's performance.

Now, I love the movie, and I think Faye is fantastic in it, but to deny that she and the whole movie are completely over the top seems strange to me. And the thing is, I think Waters agrees but he is holding back here, not wanting to rip into it. He seems to feel bad for the reputation of the movie and its star, and doesn't want to further malign it. John Waters usually calls 'em as he sees 'em, but I got the feeling he wasn't doing that here. Maybe producers didn't want him to be too negative?

Still, though, this is an entertaining commentary that I recommend.
Reviewed by Kilgore Trout on July 29th, 2011:Find all reviews by Kilgore Trout
John Waters does entertaining commentaries, and this one is no exception. He somehow makes a person respect Mommie Dearest as a flawed, but entertaining attempt to film the Christina Crawford tell-all book. He also may have a case when he asserts that Dunaways performance deserved an Oscar nomination, but was really denied because of two or three particularly astonishingly unintentionally hilarious over the top scenes that must be seen to be believed. He is an unabashed fan of the film, but has no trouble pointing out where it goes completely off the rails.

Water's commentary makes this camp classic great viewing. If a commentary track can do that, you know it's special