Our first show in Provincetown this year was hysterical. We’ve seen Hedda Lettuce channel Joan Crawford a few times and it is always wonderful. Last night we got a different take on Joan and the film that monstrously portrays her–Mommie Dearest. Hedda distills the film down to just over an hour so you get to the heart of what makes this a cult classic of camp. The evening was billed as a little bit Rocky Horror and a little bit Mystery Science Theater and that couldn’t be more accurate.
Before the movie began, Hedda prepped the audience for some participation. Each time one of the movie’s classic lines was spoken, there would be a rewind, or two, or three, so we could all say them together. These lines included: “I’m not mad at you, I’m mad at the dirt.” “Christina! Bring me the axe.” “Don’t fuck with me fellas, this ain’t my first time at the rodeo.”
The MST moments in the film will ensure I never look at it the same way again. Hedda laid in the soundtrack from Jaws a couple of times, such as when she’s inspecting the house cleaners work and when she’s headed into Christina’s closet about to find the evil wire hangers. She also pointed out the many continuity issues, took a lot of jabs at Faye Dunaway’s acting (or lack thereof) and occasionally rewrote the dialogue.
It was all brilliant! Too bad Paramount will likely never condone a release of this cut of the movie.