Monday, 13 August 2012
Now That's What I Call Camp, vol 376
Last week, our favourite filth-meister Mistress MJ (of Infomaniac infamy - enter at your own risk...) laid down a challenge. I posted that dazzling Busby Berkeley Million Dollar Mermaid spectacular in tribute to the lovely Esther Williams, and described it as "assuredly in the Top Ten of the most extravagantly camp moments in cinema".
The challenge from MJ? To come up with the rest of the Top Ten. Here, for your delectation, are ten choices (in addition to Miss Williams and her sparklers) for that Hall of Fame - in no particular order.
Inevitably, there are thousands of omissions - not least this, this, this, this, and even this. If I were to compile this list next week it would probably be different. What defines "most extravagantly camp moments", after all? In the whole gamut of Hollywood (and international) movie history, how can there only be ten contenders? There aren't, of course...
Opening proceedings in a fitting fashion is an example of exactly how one should enter a party - preferably in the world's most expensive fur, at the top of a glittering staircase, serenaded by an orchestra conducted by Fred Astaire of course! Just like Irene Dunne in Roberta...
This extract from Golddiggers of 1935 has Dick (Powell). It has frou-frou. It has dancing pianos, for gawd's sake! How camp do you want it?
In this classic number from one of the campest comedies of all time Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, my role model Miss Jane Russell gets her men:
As recently featured by Muscato, and also in my tribute to Hedy Lamarr back in 2008 - You Stepped Out of a Dream from Ziegfeld Girl. Possibly the most outlandish fashion parade in history...
The irrepressible Kay Thompson sums up how life should be in a technicolour couture fantasy from Funny Face - Think Pink! indeed. And we do!
Upping the ante, here's Dolores Delargo Towers' all-time favourite hoofer Miss Eleanor Powell in the most breath-taking Art Deco tap-dance number in the world - Fascinating Rhythm from Lady Be Good:
There is only one way to follow that - with the Patron Saint of Pzazz, of course! It's our dear Miss Liza Minnelli's finest moment from my favourite screen musical Cabaret, and the house anthem at Dolores Delargo Towers - Mein Herr:
Back to Busby Berkeley and Dick, for another eye-popping cinematic delight - it has to be By a Waterfall from Footlight Parade:
One can always rely upon Mega-Babs to dominate a movie screen, but with this magnificently uplifting camp number not just a star, but a gay icon was born - and to this day, we still re-enact this Don't Rain On My Parade sequence in full while running down the escalator to the Tube...
Speaking of re-enactments, we can often be found doing this number - around the house, down the street, around the office, around Tesco's... For its sheer campness, its chutzpah, its choreography, for its eternal aspirational message (in my life, anyhow!), if there has to be a Number 1 in this spurious countdown, then There's Gotta Be Something Better Than This from Sweet Charity has to be it!
Oh, and as a bonus, a special request from my sister and her fiancé. I know I have posted this a couple of times before, not least in my countdown to Pride just last month, but Do-mi-do-Duds from The 5000 Fingers of Dr T remains an eternal favourite, and is indeed one of the most camp musical routines, ever!
I look forward to passing on this baton to someone out there in Blogger-land to entertain us with their own Top Ten!