EIFF 2011: Polyester - in Odorama

The Skinny's Deviance editor, Ana Hine, previews a special Odorama presentation of <b>Polyester</b>, the 1981 comedy from the biggest deviant of all, John Walters, which is screening in all its fetid glory at the 2011 Edinburgh International Film Festival

Article by Ana Hine | 20 Jun 2011

John Walters’ Polyester (1981) is much like his other films – disgusting, shocking and incredibly enjoyable. On Friday 24 June the film will be shown as part of the Edinburgh International Film Festival, where prizes will be awarded for the smelliest audience member. 

Like most cult classics, Polyester is unapologetic. The film is relentless in its pursuit of cramming the most odour-related laughs into one normal length feature. While I watched it on my laptop, those at the event will get the full experience with Odorama (or scratch 'n' sniff) cards.
Deviance-wise the film has more than you could hope for: foot fetishes, Christian fundamentalists, promiscuity, teenage pregnancy, sexually active older women, motels and of course Divine. The permissive attitude of the film tied with the typical kitsch aesthetic make even the hardest parts of the film (there is a moment when a pregnant girl cries out in pain after being harassed and manhandled, which, honestly, I was a little uncomfortable with) easier to digest.
You can feel the amount of love that John Walters has for the weird and marginalised in American society, and for that reason I would encourage anyone who is interested in all that is strange and wonderful in sexuality and gender to see this movie. Just bear in mind there may be some very smelly people in the audience. 

10pm. Tickets are available in person from the venue – Edinburgh Filmhouse, 88 Lothian Road, Edinburgh, EH3 9BZ or alternatively from the Edinburgh Film Festival website. Tickets can also be purchased by calling: 0131 623 8030


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