In which John Waters takes a gleeful swipe at 1950s popular culture, with Johnny Depp at his helm as the misunderstood greaser who is tough as nails except for his one lone teardrop. The absolute best thing about Cry-Baby is that it refuses to take itself even a little bit seriously. It has delightfully absurd elements around every corner that make this one of those films that you really need to see a few times to get all the jokes. The basic storyline is about a young "drape" who falls in love with a WASP-y square. A pretty cliché story, to be sure, but the supporting cast completely succeed in elevating the material into some kind of campy masterpiece.This is a film that features Iggy Pop taking a bath in a metal pot on the front lawn, parents attempting to send their tramp of a daughter (played by Traci Lords) to Scandinavia in exchange for a nice, well-behaved girl, and a teenage Ricki Lake giving birth to her third child in the middle of a high-stakes game of chicken. It's worth watching just for the Alphabet Bomber scene, where Johnny Depp loses his shit over a bit of lightning and explains to his new girlfriend, "Electricity killed my parents!" It really has to be seen to be believed.
Audrey Fox is an ex-film student, which means that she prefers to spend her days in the dark, watching movies and pondering the director's use of diegetic sound. She currently works as an entertainment writer, joyfully rambling about all things film and television related. Add her on Twitter at @audonamission and check out her film blog at 1001moviesandbeyond.com.