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Greg Proops Presents Hairspray! (1988)
March 14 @ 7:30 pm - 10:30 pm
Return to a time when Tracy Turnblad’s flamboyant flip was all the rage, teens danced to The Roach. We’re celebrating the 30th Anniversary of John Waters’ HAIRSPRAY Greg Proops Film Club Screening! John Waters’ subversive mainstream hit HAIRSPRAY stars Ricki Lake as a plump Baltimore teen eager to appear on “The Corny Collins Show,” a local TV dance program in the 1962. A tale of rock ‘n roll and racial integration. Program begins with a live podcast by comedian Greg Proops.
Presented by the American Cinematheque and the Greg Proops Film Club.
30th Anniversary! HAIRSPRAY, 1988, Warner Bros., 92 min. Dir. John Waters.
“I thought The Beatles ruined pop music.” – John Waters
A campy, gay, subversive, fun, colorful musical about class, racism, feminism, integration, segregation and miscegenation. This picture quickly became a cult classic – the final movie of the late, magnificent, groundbreaking drag diva Divine, a big Tony-winning Broadway musical with the fabulous Harvey Fierstein, then a scary Hollywood movie with Travolta in a dress in the Divine and Harvey role; oh the irony. It is a special kind of piece as it takes on American prejudice in all its forms (race, gender, fat-shaming, interracial romance) and is now a beloved spectacle performed in high schools all over the universe. Even in our America that strives to be “great” again.
Set in Waters’ beloved Baltimore in 1962, HAIRSPRAY is a delightful comedy about a pleasingly plump teen, Tracy (Rikki Lake), who auditions to be on the Corny Collins Dance Show with her pals Penny and Nadine. Penny fumbles and Nadine is informed that “Negro Day” is the last Thursday of the month. By the way movie fans, this isn’t ancient history. Tracy gets the gig on the show because she can dance just as good as she wants. Then it is “game on,” enchanting mean girls’ boyfriends, getting chucked into slow class and spicy mixed-race dancing.
Thrill to bewigged and beloved rock icon Debbie Harry and diminutive pop producer and Republican congressperson Sonny Bono as racist amusement park owners. Gaze in wonder as a quack psychiatrist tries to program a teenage girl into white-only dating. Rock all night with Rhythm and Blues empress Ruth Brown as she teaches the white kids to shake.
The spray hits the fan and there are riots, terror, integration and car show pageants. No nurse on duty. Come ready to learn the Madison. You will feel like dancing.
Program begins with a live podcast by comedian Greg Proops. Feature starts at 8:00 PM.