Hangers On

Joan Crawford had a rather infamous reputation, although it wasn’t for her acting skills.

Sure, she won an Oscar for her performance in the Warner Bros. classic Mildred Pierce, and was among Hollywood’s top-grossing film stars for five decades. She also revolutionized women’s fashions and answered every one of her fan letters personally. But despite all of these acclaims (as well as her portrayal of strong, independent women on the big-screen), she’s forever remembered as the failing Hollywood starlet who beat her kid with a box of Comet cleanser, as depicted in the film adaptation of her adopted daughter Christina’s book, Mommie Dearest.

The film, featuring Faye Dunaway’s astonishing portrait of Lady Crawford as a monster mother whose career is on the skids, will unfurl on Saturday, May 7, at Madcap Theaters in Tempe. Expect audience members to turn up holding wire hangers, jars of cold cream, and other props from the film, which became an instant camp classic thanks to Dunaway’s over-the-top performance.

The screening, which starts at 10 p.m., will also feature a musical pre-show extravaganza of drag artistry from female illusionists Pandora DeStrange and Becky Bodacious.

Sat., May 7, 10 p.m., 2011
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Robrt L. Pela has been a weekly contributor to Phoenix New Times since 1991, primarily as a cultural critic. His radio essays air on National Public Radio affiliate KJZZ's Morning Edition.
Contact: Robrt L. Pela