Coming to VOD this Friday, November 10:
P David Ebersole and Todd Hughes
BAFICI, Docs Against Gravity, Provincetown, Sitges, Gent, Am Docs, Frameline, Inside Out
A campy exploration of the life, death, and legend of Hollywood bombshell Jayne Mansfield.
In her heyday in the late 1950s, Jayne Mansfield was a popular Hollywood sex symbol who accepted publicity at any cost, a polyglot who happily took on a dumb blonde persona for fame. Arguably known more for her personal life than notable screen roles, she became infamous after a gruesome 1967 car accident took her life at the age of 34. Ebersole and Hughes focus on her public persona and its legacy in this playful investigation into the wild rumors that have colored her life and death, particularly Mansfield’s connections to fellow publicity hound Anton LaVey, founder of the infamous Church of Satan. Rather than seek out family participation, the filmmakers deliberately instead interview celebrities and cultural commentators like John Waters, Kenneth Anger, and Mary Woronov, as well as academics for their take on the fascination engendered by the ill-fated actress. Upping the inherent camp value are several dance sequences featuring male and female models in Mansfield-like wigs, as well as a near-ever-present score – while both should have been pared down, the project as a whole is entertaining and unique.