April 19, 2008

Charles Busch brings another one of his stage creations to the big screen. This time, he’s kept the starring role for himself, instead of letting another actress have all the fun.

Angela Arden is a role that any actress would die to play and a role that every drag queen would kill to play. She’s a cold-blooded killer, yet the only sympathetic character in the whole damn show. She’s a walking contradiction – a classy broad that has no problem running a train with a couple of moving men if the mood suits her. When she tires of her abusive (and eternally constipated) husband, she does what any good wife in the 50s would have done – she helps insert his suppository. Unfortunately for him, she’s laced it with arsenic…Even though she was entirely cut out of the will, her children began to suspect her involvement in her husband’s death. Die, Mommie, Die is an homage to melodramas from the 40s and 50s – definitely NOT a parody. Charles Busch is not making fun when Angela performs showtunes through-out her husband’s wake – he’s having fun!

Natasha Lyonne plays Angela’s daughter, Edith – who has a creepy Elektra complex. I’m not a big fan of Natasha Lyonne. It’s not just because I think she’ll rape my dog – she just bugs me for some reason that I can’t put my finger on. Lauren Ambrose – who starred as Chicklet in Psycho Beach Party – would have made a far better Edith than Lyonne. I also question the casting of Jason Priestly. He doesn’t give a bad performance – I just can’t get past the 90210 thing. I cannot imagine any cast member of 90210 having a enormous dick, except of course, Shannen Doherty.

I have a lot more respect for Charles Busch after seeing a documentary on him – The Lady in Question is Charles Busch. I just figured he was another Divine wannabe drag queen, but he’s so much more. He’s done his time on the stage – writing, directing, acting and has even been nominated for a Tony. The only thing I really question is his involvement in the Rosie O’Donnell financed, Boy George vehicle Taboo – but I guess if you’re gay, you might as well be really gay?

I can’t wait to see what Charles does next – I’m hoping for a big screen version of the play that put him on the map, Vampire Lesbians of Sodom.


Year – 2003
Rating – R
Runtime – 90 minutes
Genre – Camp Comedy
Director(s) – Mark Rucker
Writer(s) – Charles Busch
Actor(s) – Charles Busch, Jason Priestley, Natasha Lyonne, Frances Conroy, Philip Baker Hall
BOB Rating – Three BOBs
Favorite Quote – "You've slipped into my life as easily as vermouth into a glass of gin...quickly and just a bit too smooth." - Angela Arden (Charles Busch)