To celebrate John Waters' appearance at the Sydney Opera House in October, it's time to revisit the sordid, snarky treats Serial Mom and Female Trouble from the cherished 'Pope of Trash'. Cheerful housewife Beverly Sutphin (Kathleen Turner) appears to live a charmed life in the suburbs of Baltimore. With her successful dentist husband (Sam Waterston), two adoring teenagers (Ricki Lake and Matthew Lillard) and immaculately kept household, she’s as American as apple pie. Little do they know, however, that Beverly enjoys a secretive double life as a serial killer prone to murdering people over even the most trivial of social faux pas. When her criminal dedication to proper etiquette starts to get out of hand – seeing her run over a school teacher and ramp up her filthy prank calls to nervous neighbour Dottie Hinkle (Mink Stole) – the cops start to get wise to her homicidal tendencies and she’s forced to stop at nothing to protect her nuclear foursome.
Why You Should See This Film
All together now: “You can't wear white shoes after Labor Day!” A gloriously wacky ‘90s cult gem, Serial Mom features some of John Waters’ most quotable dialogue – and that’s saying something. Although Julie Andrews and Susan Sarandon were originally considered for the lead role, the unhinged gusto with which seasoned veteran Turner attacks her performance makes it one for the ages. Along with Waters’ usual returning players, this film also features cameos from Patty Hearst, Joan Rivers, Suzanne Somers and Traci Lords.
- Year: 1994
- Rating: M
- Director: John Waters
- Cast: Kathleen Turner, Ricki Lake, Sam Waterston, Mink Stole, Matthew Lillard
- Duration: 90 minutes
- Language: English