Mr. Know-It-All

John Waters

The Tarnished Wisdom of a Filth Elder

Water’s new memoir starts out with a tongue-in-cheek scree at his notoriety and fame:

Suddenly the worst thing that can happen to a creative person has happened to me. I am accepted. How can I “struggle” when my onetime underground movies are now easily available?…How can I whine about my films being hard to see when Warner Bros. now handles many of my titles…I can’t even impersonate a damaged artist anymore. I have had friends for fifty years and some of my dinner dates are not deductible for business…Couldn’t you just puke?

And off he goes.

Waters skips from topic to topic in his essays, like the deranged hyperactive child with a drawn-on mustache he once was. And still is.

One minute he’s dishing gossip on the making of his movies and the Hollywood system. The next he’s describing his Brutalist “dream” house, with a reference to This Brutal World. Funny, nasty, witty, filthy and demented, Waters is his movies come to life. A wacked-out pleasure to read, as are all of his books.

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