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Topp Twins: Untouchable Girls

4.7 out of 5 stars 17 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

The Topp Twins: Untouchable Girls tells the story of the world's only yodeling country singing-and-comedy lesbian sibling duo - Jools and Lynda Topp - who have inspired a generation with their politics and celebration of joy. A grin-inducing, inspiring tale peppered with appearances by the Twins' hilarious cast of alter-ego characters. The culmination of the film takes a more serious tone with its raw portrayal of Jools' battle against breast cancer. Much of it is told using intimate footage Lynda shot while her sister went through treatment. Jools becomes an inspiration for women affected by the disease and solidifies the twins' status as well-loved cultural icons.The highest grossing documentary in New Zealand history and one of the country's top ten movies of all time. Winner of numerous awards.

Review

"A glowing, galloping tribute" -- Jeannette Catsoulis, The New York Times

"An irrepressible sense of fun." -- Melissa Anderson, Village Voice

"Imagine a cross between the Indigo Girls and the Smothers Brothers, and you'd have the Topp Twins, New Zealand's finest yodeling country-western-and-comedy lesbian sibling duo." -- Nick Schager, Time Out New York

Special Features

None.

Product Details

  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    NR
    Not Rated
  • Studio: Disinformation
  • DVD Release Date: November 8, 2011
  • Run Time: 84 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B005GP7F9I
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #110,050 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
Leanne Pooley's 2009 award-winning documentary about New Zealand's Jools and Lynda Topp, billed as the world's only yodeling, country-singing, twin lesbian comediennes (though they prefer to be known as singers who are funny), has just been released on DVD.

The documentary profiles the Taurean twin sisters (born May 14, 1958 in Huntly, located in the Waikato region of the North Island of New Zealand); real cowgirls, who grew up singing to the cows on the family's dairy farm near Huntly.

Patriots with particular political passion for social justice and nuclear disarmament, Lynda and Jools left home at 17 to join New Zealand's rough equivalent of the United States' erstwhile Women's Army Corp. Reflecting on their New Zealand military service "before it was integrated," Lynda describes the three-month training experience as "sort of like a pajama party with guns."

Natural-born entertainers, the twins' harmony singing and comedic bent resulted in their developing a cast of characters including Camp Mother & Camp Leader, Raylene & Brenda, and the cross-dressing Ken and Ken. But the sisters don't flaunt their sexuality so much as embrace it and, as a result, they have a worldwide, mainstream appeal.

As Comedy Writer Paul Horan says of the Topp Twins, "On paper they should not work. On paper they should be commercial death. But they totally deliver to the audience time and time again."

In their native country, the Topps have used humor to both make a point and defuse controversy when they assert their penchant for activism. Such was the case when the twins dealt with their government's position on gay rights: "The law had said it was illegal for consenting adult males to engage in sex. But it was an injustice. We felt like it was an injustice.
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There is something about Topp Twins: Untouchable Girls that is bigger than you think. Maybe even bigger that it ought to be... but bigger nonetheless. There is something grand about this film, and there is something magical about Jools and Lynda Topp and the lifelong career they assembled.

From a comedy perspective, there are scenes in the film that will leave you laughing on the floor...(sheep coloring? doggie doos?)... and that's great! But Jools and Lynda Topp are undeniable characters that rival anything you might have seen in vaudeville, anything you may have experienced in political activism, anything you might have seen at the local music house and then some. Jools and Lynda Topp are country...Jools and Lynda Topp are rock & roll. Jools and Lynda Topp are comics and characters. Jools and Lynda Topp are open lesbians and Jools and Lynda Topp marched to a drumbeat they developed... and the fans followed from down under to the U.K to the U.S.A. "Untouchable Girls" captures all of their multiple layers, and their layers were not simple personas that they put on like masks for the sake of the show, but layers that these sisters lived by and allowed their audiences to see vividly.

If the Topp Twins were American, Untouchable Girls would be an American story of living your dream and finding success. Oddly, despite the accents, and despite the New Zealand locale, when you watch Untouchable Girls you feel America all over it even though it's not there but for a glimpse. The film tells a world-wide wonderful story of inspiration, of music, of laughter, of activism, of politic and of course... of incredible yodeling.

Jools and Lynda Topp had natural guts, and this film does, too. I loved it!
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I love this video. I bought it after watching them long ago so I could share it with my aunt and cousin, who also now loves them. These two zany women are once in a lifetime delights! I'd love to see them live but I guess I'd have to get on a plane. I can see why New Zealand calls them a National Treasure! I need to find more footage of them.
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I enjoyed learning about these two women very much. They are extremely funny and in touch with their audience. What they champion happen to be similar beliefs as mine so that makes them all the more likeable. Their actions reflect their commitments and they don't participate in movements because they think it is good for their career but because they truly believe. Their love of life and people shines through in this documentary. Their story will make you laugh, cry and rejoice. Their love of life and the changes and challenges it presents are inspirational. Not only is this informative but entertaining as well. Highly recommended and a documentary you can watch several times and still enjoy.
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Format: DVD
"The Topp Twins: Untouchable Girls" is a biographical documentary crossed with a concert film about Jools and Lynda Topp, identical twins who are, apparently, the biggest thing in New Zealand comedy. The twins are in their 50s now, but they have been activist performers since their late teens. Jools plays the guitar. They both sing, usually folk or country-western. They do characters and stand-up. Their performances are tinged with political activism, combining music, comedy, and politics in their own idiosyncratic blend. Comedy writer Paul Horan points out that "yodeling lesbian twins" should not work "on paper", but they do. Their candid, down-to-earth, fun demeanor endears them to people who might normally be turned off by their message.

A recent concert by the twins runs through Leanne Pooley's film. I'm not sure why, but Jools and Lynda related their lives and careers in this concert, asking people who had made a big impression on them to join them on stage. Their parents, brother, and friends were in the audience. So this is a good launching point for a documentary about their lives, as we can observe their style and hear their story in their own words. There are also interviews with the twins, with colleagues, interviews with the twins in character, and archival footage of their personal and professional lives. Not surprisingly, the Topps are a major force in gay rights in New Zealand. This is a conventional documentary, but perhaps that is the best way to introduce the world to the unconventional Topp twins.

The DVD (Kinosmith 2011): Bonus features are a theatrical trailer (2 min), 9 deleted interviews and deleted scenes, and a featurette entitled "Beginnings" (24 min). This offers additional information about the twins' childhood, including more interviews with their admirably sensible parents, their brother, fond memories and several funny stories recounted by the twins. No subtitles.
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