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Shock Value: A Tasteful Book About Bad Taste [Paperback]

John Waters
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
Price: 8.99 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
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Book Description

6 Jun 2005
To me, bad taste is what entertainment is all about. If someone vomits watching one of my films, it's like getting a standing ovation. Thus begins John Waters's autobiography. And what a story it is. Opening with his upbringing in Baltimore ("Charm City" as dubbed by the tourist board; the "hairdo capital of the world" as dubbed by Waters), it covers his friendship with his muse and leading lady, Divine, detailed accounts of how Waters made his first movies, stories of the circle of friends/actors he used in these films, and finally the "sort-of fame" he achieves in America. Complementing the text are dozens of fabulous old photographs of Waters and crew. Here is a true love letter from a legendary filmmaker to his friends, family, and fans.

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Shock Value: A Tasteful Book About Bad Taste + Crackpot: The Obsessions of John Waters + Female Trouble [DVD]
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Product details

  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Avalon Group; 3rd Revised edition edition (6 Jun 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1560256982
  • ISBN-13: 978-1560256984
  • Product Dimensions: 25.5 x 17.9 x 1.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 232,862 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


"The memoirs of John Waters are as outrageous and entertaining as his films."

Inside This Book (Learn More)
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To me, bad taste is what entertainment is all about. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Absolute Must-Have! 10 Aug 2007
This book is absolutely FANTASTIC. A genuine insight into the mind of one of the best ever cult movie makers and some of the early films he made - straight from the horses mouth (so to speak).
John Waters writes with ease about his own inimitable fashion and includes some fantastic rare pictures of many of the superb people cast in their roles, both on and off set. Mink Stole, David Lochary, Divine, Edith Massey etc....theyre all in here plus many more.
Often adored, always scorned but never equalled, John Waters gives the reader EVERYTHING they want here and much more.
If you are a John Waters fan, this book is a Must-Have and will not fail to delight. If you're not a John Waters fan or know nothing or very little about him then treat yourself to this gem. It's definitely a book that anyone will find difficult to put down - for whatever reason!
Fantastic Stuff!
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3.0 out of 5 stars Love it 16 Mar 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Love John Waters and wish he made more films
This is a great rad about this mad genius and i love the relationship with Divine
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5.0 out of 5 stars Shocking in a good way! 16 July 2013
By Ian
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
He shocks, but he writes very well. It's as if he's speaking to you. Great stories, great photos. Buy it!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Incredible! 18 Mar 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Really whacky book, i admired JOhn Waters because he seemed nuts and after reading this book i know for sure that he is! A must have
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5.0 out of 5 stars This Filthy Waters 6 Mar 2010
If you're reading this review then you probably know all about John Waters anyway, and you won't need me to tell you how deleriously funny, shocking and outrageous his early movies are, even by today's standards. "Female Trouble", where the acid-scarred Divine goes from juvenile delinquent to monstrous beauty queen and ultimately fame-obsessed mass murderer; and "Desperate Living", with its fairy-tale like depiction of fascism, homosexuality, graphic genital mutilation and rabies aren't exactly the type of films to watch with your loved one on a Saturday night, but once seen they're NEVER forgotten. Surprisingly though, from a man who freely admits that his ultimate intention was to shock the cinema-going public, this autobiography cum celebration of trash is an accessible and often warm and homely read (honestly!) Beginning with his childhood, which consisted of a Catholic education and an unhealthy obsession with car crashes, Waters leads us a merry dance through his twisted little world of freaks, female impersonators and dinners of dog poo, giving us the low-down on the making of his movies and the "multiple maniacs" who starred in them. It's an old book though, written in 1981, when the "Polyester", his scratch-n-sniff movie, was in pre-production, but there's a retrospective introduction at the beginning, which brings the text up to date. So if you only know of Waters through "Hairspray", which is still his most publicly accessible film to date, then chances are you're going to be unpleasantly surprised by the outrageous recollections documented herein (my favourite being the family who tried to take him to court because they were shocked at "Pink Flamingos." If however you are familiar with Waters's output from his less mainstream days, then you'll love this little trip into the memories and obsessions of the Pope of Trash.
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