We’re so pleased that Manchester’s favourite queer film club have found a regular home at Cultureplex’s Mini Cini. Starting with Frank Perry’s camp classic Mommie Dearest, film fans can expect wild, “way-too-interactive” immersive screenings on the first Friday of every month, with titles swinging from high art to bad taste, from the greatest queer films ever made to films “so bad only gay men could love them.”
Over the past couple of years, there’s been an explosion in highly Instagrammable, interactive, immersive cinema events involving fancy dress, actors and elaborate set dressing. But while the treatment is usually given to big, nostalgia-tinged films from the 80s and 90s, Make A Scene’s live events are more John Waters and Ab Fab. Attendees at previous events have seen Showgirls in a Casino, Gremlin drag queens, anti-Trump placard-making and a flower-arrange-a-long screening of Little Shop of Horrors.
The film club’s showing of Mommie Dearest promises to be a similarly memorable affair. Perry’s 1981 docudrama is based upon Christina Crawford’s autobiography-cum-exposé about her adoptive mother – played deliciously by Faye Dunaway – the Hollywood icon, Joan Crawford. Devised as a hard-hitting piece of dramatic cinema about celebrity parenthood and abuse, the heightened atmosphere and bizarre, quotable script earned the film a Razzie for Worst Picture. But those same properties helped the film commercially, and it has been championed as a camp comedy and embraced by the queer community.
As always, Make A Scene’s Gary Williams will be hosting on the night and audience members familiar with the film are expected to be quoting along: “Barbara, please!” “Christina, bring me the axe!” “No wire hangers!” etc. In honour of the film, Make A Scene and Cultureplex will be running a wire hanger amnesty on the night. Filmgoers clearing out their closets will be able to trade in their hangers for a free cocktail, because it’s what Joan would have wanted.