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Queen of the Desert The Adventures of Priscilla Movie Review

stamp film bernadette elliott

When 1992's Strictly Ballroom became an international hit, exhibitors were eager for MORE offbeat Australian movies that would do as well. The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert fit the bill. Who would ever imagine Terence Stamp, the Oscar-nominated, impossibly gorgeous Billy Budd in Peter Ustinov's superb 1962 film of the same name, would EVER play a drag queen named Bernadette? And yet, Stamp, who initially resisted the idea, discovered that Bernadette was a role he was destined to play. The camera is not overly kind to Stamp at 55, but he invests the role of Bernadette with dignity, elegance, intrigue, and mystery, all the qualities of a great diva. Hugo Weaving and Guy Pearce, too, are terrific as fellow divas Mitzi AKA Tick and Felicia AKA Adam. The three of them hit the road in the title character, an outdated bus. Along the way, Bernadette discovers romance, Tick experiences fatherhood, and Adam learns how not to behave with a gang of red-necked rowdies. The soundtrack is a keeper, with songs galore by Alicia Bridges, Gloria Gaynor, Peaches and Herb, The Village People, Charlene, R. B. Greaves, Lena Horne, Paper Lace, Patti Page, CeCe Peniston, Trudy Richards, White Plains, Vanessa Williams, and Abba. Cast Note: Terence Stamp and Bill Hunter, who plays a charmer named Bob, had previously worked together in the 1985 Stephen Frears film The Hit.

1994 (R) 102m/C AU Terence Stamp, Hugo Weaving, Guy Pearce, Bill Hunter, Sarah Chadwick, Mark Holmes, Julia Cortez; D: Stephan Elliott; W: Stephan Elliott; C: Brian J. Breheny; M: Guy Gross. Academy Awards ‘94: Best Costume Design; Australian Film Institute ‘94: Best Costume Design; Nominations: Australian Film Institute ‘94: Best Actor (Stamp), Best Actor (Weaving), Best Cinematography, Best Director (Elliott), Best Film, Best Screenplay; Golden Globe Awards ‘95: Best Actor—Musical/Comedy (Stamp), Best Film—Musical/ Comedy. VHS, LV

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