Tag: Valley of the Dolls

May 3, 2016 / / Main Slate

Camp in film is deliberate, exaggerated, often irreverent send-up of popular beliefs, opinions, entertainments, and sacred cows. There is intentional camp (the movies of Mae West come immediately to mind, as do those of Marlene Dietrich. Her BLONDE VENUS, THE BLUE ANGEL, SEVEN SINNERS, MOROCCO are film textbook lessons in how to cannonball gender, sex, music up into the stratosphere. Bette Midler’s stage shows fairly drip with it (Midler’s schtick is the epitome of campy, nasty fun). This brand of entertainment suggests there are alternatives to the staid ways in which we view our daily lives, our culture, and our habits. It forces us out of our comfort zones. Masters of camp (John Waters is a another brilliant example) have their finger on the pulse of what people don’t want to see or know to then show them exactly that, the result being that people end up loving and embracing what they thought of as taboo.