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Hairspray (2002)

Sonny Bono , Ruth Brown , John Waters  |  PG |  DVD
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (216 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Sonny Bono, Ruth Brown, Josh Charles, Divine, Jason Downs
  • Directors: John Waters
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Anamorphic, Closed-captioned, Color, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround), English (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: PG (Parental Guidance Suggested)
  • Studio: New Line Home Video
  • DVD Release Date: November 5, 2002
  • Run Time: 93 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (216 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00006RZ9Y
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #15,208 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Hairspray" on IMDb

Special Features

  • Original theatrical trailer

Editorial Reviews

John Waters' unique brand of humor comes to DVD in Hairspray, starring Ricki Lake, Divine and Sonny Bono.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
54 of 59 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A campy, feel-good film carrying an important message November 27, 2003
Format:DVD
I think it's safe to say that Hairspray is a unique motion picture. The film, while providing nonstop fun and laughs throughout, also manages to not only confront but to roll right over prejudice in several of its nefarious guises. I was a teenager when this film came out, and sadly, it was the death of Divine (just before the movie was released) that made me aware of this film. I don't know if that publicity helped or hurt ticket sales - Divine, for those who have never heard of him, was famous for playing female roles, and Hairspray had begun to rejuvenate his whole career. As for the film, it's extremely campy in the best of ways, overflowing with great singing and dancing from the early 1960s, and it is the type of film that makes you feel good after you watch it.
Ricki Lake plays Tracy Turnblad, a big, bold, and beautiful teenager who dreams of dancing on the exceedingly popular Corny Collins dance show. Her mother, played by Divine, isn't too crazy about modern music and dancing - until Tracy auditions and gets a spot on the show. Strutting her stuff in front of the cameras, she quickly becomes Baltimore's newest sensation. This does not sit well with Amber von Tussle (Colleen Fitzpatrick), as Tracy steals her man and then threatens to win the coveted title of Miss Auto Show 1963. Tracy is overweight, but she likes herself just as she is and easily dismisses the fat jokes thrown her way early on. The big issue in this film, though, is segregation. Tracy and her best friend Penny Pingleton (Joann Havrilla) soon become friends with some of the black kids in town and begin working toward integrating the Corny Collins show. Collins is all for the idea himself, as currently the Negro show runs only once each month under the controls of sassy Motormouth Mabel (Ruth Brown).
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
Format:DVD
Hairspray is one of John Waters' more mainstream movies in that it deals with the themes of racial tensions leading up to an integrated Baltimore, teen angst and first true loves, and those incredible dances and dance shows on TV from the late 1950s into the 1960s. Of course, with Hairspray being a John Waters movie, characters become grossly exaggerated for a humorous effect; you get a very funny, playful and harmless cast of both young and older people in Baltimore facing changing times as they try to live their lives as best they can.

Tracy Turnblad (Ricki Lake) is an overweight teenage girl who can shake off jokes about her weight with a type of self-confidence that is truly remarkable. Tracy and her friend Penny Pingleton (Joann Havrilla) enjoy watching and dancing along to The Corny Collins TV Show in Tracy's living room at home; and one day Tracy sets her mind to trying out for the show with some support from her friend Penny. When Tracy does try out on the Corny Collins TV dance show for dancing teenagers, she wins a spot on the council almost immediately! This upsets the stuck up, racist reigning queen Amber von Tussle and her parents (Sonny Bono and Debbie Harry) who make their living running Tilted Acres, a segregated theme park in Baltimore. As Tracy's star rises she also charms the heart of Amber's boyfriend, Link Larkin (Michael St. Gerard). Of course, this means war. Amber and her parents must--I mean, must--find a way to disgrace Tracy so that Amber can remain the star of the show and ultimately win the highly coveted 1963 Miss Auto Show award. Of course, as this all happens, Hairspray pokes fun at the obsession some people had with getting their hair to be as high and as perfect looking as they thought it could or should be.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A really funny comedy bursting with talent. I loved it! October 14, 2003
Format:DVD
I saw this film when it first came out in 1988. I loved it then. I recently saw it on the small screen. I loved it even more. Maybe its because I've followed the career of its star, Ricki Lake, and have seen her transformed from a chubby teenager into a slim talk show host. Maybe its because I can appreciate the comic genius of director John Waters who is willing to push the envelope over the top on every scene. Maybe its because I really enjoyed watching the double role played by the transvestite called Divine. Maybe its because of the outrageous clothes worn by all the characters. Most of all though, I know its because this film made me laugh out loud.
Hairspray is set in the early sixties, when teen age dance programs were all the rage. And its about a fat girl who doesn't fit in, but yet is a terrific dancer. She becomes a teenage idol though and the whole city loves her. She's smart and sassy and also wants to force the dance show to racially integrate. And she manages to do this with just the right degree of gumption, comedy and romance. The casting includes Sonny Bono and Deborah Harry as the parents of a teenager who is Ricki's competition, Colleen Fitzpatrick. And the singer Ruth Brown not only has a role of the mother of a teenager who is trying to integrate the show, she sings too. Divine plays the role of Ricki's mother as well as the male owner of the TV show. And Jerry Stiller is cast as Ricki's father.
All in all, the film is bursting with talent. I sat there, relaxed, and laughed my head off. This is truly a funny comedy. Highly recommended.
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