The definitive camp classic that raises more questions than it answers. Questions
such as: Who did the pukey casting in this movie? Why are all the guys such weinies?
Why are all those horrible musical numbers sooo long? Did the movie's hairdresser
win an Oscar for his work? It grieves me to say that I cannot remember the first
time I saw Valley of the Dolls - but it's been a part of my history for so
long that we are virtually inseparable. It has provided me (and many other discriminating
queens) with an arsenal of possible responses to life's situations. I can't count
the number of times I've been forced to whirl around and confront someone by saying,
"They drummed you out of Hollywood, so you come crawling back to Broadway.
But Broadway doesn't go for booze and dope - now get out of my way, I've got a man
waiting for me." To paraphrase a bumper sticker I once saw: Helen Lawson
said it, I believe it, and that settles it. Helen also gave us the immortal words,
"The only hit that comes out of a Helen Lawson show is Helen Lawson, and
that's me, baby, remember?" You gotta love her. Or has this ever happened
to you? You're on the phone with your whining leech of a mother - you've just agreed
to pawn your mink coat to help support the witch. You find yourself saying, as Sharon
Tate's Jennifer North did, "Mother, I know I don't have any talent, I know
all I have is a body and I am doing my bust exercises. I'll wire you the money first
thing in the morning." Took the words right out of your mouth, didn't it?
Better yet is the infamous performance by Patty Duke as pill queen Neely O'Hara as
she sings "It's Impossible" - just watch the beads she's wearing. Keep
watching those beads - you won't be sorry. Dialogue aside, the casting is abysmal,
but that's part of the entertainment. The clothes, makeup, and hair are Fab, especially
in the "Gillian Girl" montage starring the dreadful Barbara Parkins as
Anne Welles. The sequence is a virtual encyclopedia of looks for us all to try out
in the privacy of our bedrooms - or in Anne's case, the privacy of your own TV show.
Valley of the Dolls is a great movie in the very same way that Showgirls
is a great movie. Rent it and howl.
Tawdry, tarshy, and totally diviiiine! Valley of the Dolls is a hoot not to
--Stephen M. Moser
Film Vault Suggested Links
Men Cry Bullets
Search for related videos at Reel.com
Search for more by Mark Robson at Reel.com
Search for related books at Amazon.com
Search for related music at Amazon.com
Rate this Film
If you don't want to vote on a film yet, and would like to know how
others voted, leave the rating selection as "Vote Here" and then click the
Cast Vote button.