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Sordid Lives
Sordid Lives
Actors: Delta Burke, Bonnie Bedelia, Olivia Newton-John, Kirk Geiger, Sarah Hunley
Director: Del Shores
Genres: Comedy
R     2003     1hr 51min

Get ready for laughs the size of Texas when Olivia Newton-John, Beau Bridges, Bonnie Bedelia and Delta Burke lead an all-star cast in this twisted, white-trash tale "that puts the 'fun' in 'dysfunctional'" (Toronto Sun). T...  more »


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Movie Details

Actors: Delta Burke, Bonnie Bedelia, Olivia Newton-John, Kirk Geiger, Sarah Hunley
Director: Del Shores
Creators: Del Shores, George Conda, J. Todd Harris, James Echerd, Jourdan Krauss, Linda Swartz, Matt Gohd
Genres: Comedy
Sub-Genres: Gay & Lesbian
Studio: 20th Century Fox
Format: DVD - Color,Widescreen - Closed-captioned
DVD Release Date: 03/18/2003
Original Release Date: 01/01/2001
Theatrical Release Date: 01/01/2001
Release Year: 2003
Run Time: 1hr 51min
Screens: Color,Widescreen
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 14
MPAA Rating: R (Restricted)
Languages: English

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Movie Reviews

Laugh-Out-Loud Hysteria and a Message FINALLY ON DVD
Jose R. Perez | Yonkers, NY USA | 09/13/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)

"I caught this film in a theater in Ft. Lauderdale and I was bowled over. AT last, it's been released on DVD and it's worth the wait. Seeing it again, I laughed even more than the first time - the characters get under your skin with their bizarre antics and the direction is truly clever, juxtaposing a running plotline about a white-trash funeral and the surreal characters who come together as a result. Special kudos to Bonnie Bedelia, who is shrill but ultimately a real character. And Leslie Jordan as a drag-queen in a mental institution channeling Tammy Wynette is flat out HYSTERICAL.The DVD has some standard extras - deleted scenes, extra songs, a new opening, and commentary from stars and the director. I promise you - this is a movie you will share with your friends and laugh laugh laugh! Sure, it can be corny and superficial at times, but lemme tell ya...the characters are never less than 3-dimensionsal. This is a sharp, witty, humane movie with a terrific ensemble cast that deserves attention. An intertwined collection of small town stories about faith, love and redemption, "Sordid Lives" has more laughs in its first 15 minutes than most comedies enjoy in two hours. The performances are uniformly file, including Bonnie Bedelia, Delta Burke, Olivia Newton-John (a sweet and pleasant surprise), Leslie Jordan, and Beau Bridges. There are moments of sheer bliss as a town prepares to bury one of its own against a backdrop of angst, humor and real drama. Even the hysterical parts are handled with great sentiment and care. The audience I saw the movie with was cackling with laughter! A terrific film!"
This movie is a reflection of it's characters - Hysterical!!
Steven K. Marshall | 05/12/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)

"It was easy to invision Delta Burke as the queen of a trailer court type neighborhood, but when you throw in Olivia Newton-John as a lesbian folk singer and Beau Bridges as a pathetic loser you begin to see the picture of a highly dysfunctional group of friends and relatives intertwined in a tale, more about righting the wrongs of a dysfunctional history and less about the real story: What are we going to bury mama in now that she is dead. Apparently she tripped over Beau Bridges prosthetic leg on the way to the bathroom in a cheap motel where they were doing the nasty!! Sordid Lives is a befitting title to a movie that will have you somewhere between horrified and in tears from laughter. Sounds like the way things were in many families I know!"
A hoot and a howl
Steven K. Marshall | Little Rock, AR, United States | 09/24/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)

""Sordid Lives" received only a limited release in theaters in the Los Angeles area, so it has not been seen by nearly as many people as it should. Writer-director Del Shores balances delicate sensitivity with gut-busting laughs in this tale of a Texas family beset by death and homosexuality, not necessarily in that order.The central figure, Ty, is a gay TV soap opera actor who is "out" to his friends and associates, but still closeted to his Texas family, who have gone so far as to institutionalize another family member ("Brother Boy") simply because of his penchant for dressing up like Tammy Wynette.The two story elements are brought together over the funeral of the family matriarch, who passed away in the midst of a motel room tryst with a married man. (She tripped over one of his prosthetic legs and hit her head on a bathroom sink).Beau Bridges, Delta Burke, Bonnie Bedelia and Oliva Newton-John bring Shores' characters to life in this hysterical film adaptation of his long-running stage hit.Don't miss it when it arrives on home video."
White trash have their problems too
Joseph Haschka | Glendale, CA USA | 08/31/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)

"As SORDID LIVES opens, Sissy (Beth Grant) is awaiting the funeral of her sister Peggy, who recently died in a cheap motel room after tripping over the detached wooden legs of her adulterous lover, G.W. (Beau Bridges), and smashing her head against the bathroom porcelain. As if Sissy doesn't have problems enough in the wake of five failed marriages, she's struggling to quit smoking, popping Valium like candy, and having to cope with the dysfunctions of assorted family members. Niece Latrelle (Bonnie Bedelia), whose husband is off with Jimmy Carter building homes for the poor, is in denial over the homosexuality of son Ty (Kirk Geiger), an aspiring actor out in L.A., and contesting the decision of her sister LaVonda (Ann Walker) to clothe Mom in her favorite mink stole for the burial in 110-degree Texas heat. Meanwhile, Peggy's son Earl (Leslie Jordan), a homosexual transvestite, has been confined to a mental institution for the past twenty years. Out in SoCal, Ty is suffering a sexual identity crisis, and is on his twenty-seventh therapist.SORDID LIVES, a politically correct film espousing gay rights in a heavy Texas accent, won't appeal to everyone, but several of the performances are surprisingly excellent. Jordan is positively superb as Earl, who spends his life dressed up as CW singer Tammy Wynette, and has a permanent gig entertaining his fellow inmates in the asylum. Also exceptional is Rosemary Alexander as the sexually frustrated Dr. Eve Bolinger, the institution psychologist assigned to Earl's case. Eve's career, as well as a lucrative book deal and an appearance on Oprah, are all dependent on her ability to successfully de-homosexualize her charge. Therapy has not progressed well after sixty-eight sessions, and Eve is prepared to take Earl's problem in hand, so to speak. The single, on-screen session between Earl and his shrink is brilliantly scripted and worth the price of the video rental, and then some.A very nice touch is Olivia Newton-John as Bitzy Mae Harling, an ex-con and local bad girl, whose timely live performance of topical songs augments recorded Tammy Wynette vocals. Delta Burke as Noleta, G.W.'s unhappy spouse, is also effective, as is Sissy's striking hairdo.Sometimes, the film's humor becomes shrill and a little forced. For that reason, I'm lopping off a fifth star. However, though SORDID LIVES is perhaps not suitable for screening at a Southern Baptist potluck, it's one that may offer a pleasant surprise if selected off the rental store shelf as a "well, why not?" afterthought."