Beyond the Valley of the Dolls

1970

Beyond the Valley of the Dolls (1970)

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Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

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Movie Info

Roundly panned upon its first release, Russ Meyer's X-rated Beyond the Valley of the Dolls has gained a huge cult following over the years for its unique mix of pop music, high camp, and exploitation. Dolly Read, Cynthia Myers and Marcia McBroom comprise a rock group called the Carrie Nations, who'll do anything to hit it big in show business. Their "anything goes" attitudes towards pot, group sex and lesbianism lead to several sticky plot complications, culminating in a murder spree (in one shot, a man is decapitated as the 20th Century-Fox fanfare is heard on the soundtrack). Bearing absolutely no relation to the Jacqueline Susann novel/film Valley of the Dolls, Beyond the Valley of the Dolls was coscripted by film critic Roger Ebert.

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Cast

Marcia McBroom
as Petronella
John LaZar
as Ronnie
Erica Gavin
as Roxanne
Phyllis Davis
as Susan Lake
Harrison Page
as Emerson Thorne
Duncan McLeod
as Porter Hall
James Inglehart
as Randy Black
Charles Napier
as Baxter Wolfe
Jim Iglehart
as Randy Black
Stan Ross
as Disciple
Lavelle Roby
as Vanessa
Ray Angel
as Girl in Tub
Veronica Erickson
as Blonde Date
Haji
as Cat Woman
Karen Smith
as Redhead
Sebastian Brook
as Art Director
Bruce McBroom
as Photographer
Bruce V. McBroom
as Photographer
Ian Sander
as Boy in Tub
Ko-Ko Tani
as Assistant
Tea Crawford
as Kathy Page
Heath Jobes
as Makeup Man
John Logan
as Escort
Susan Reed
as First Fashion Model
Robin Bach
as Gay Boy
Ceil Cabot
as Mother
Mary Carroll
as Middle-Aged Woman
Joseph Cellini
as Man in Flowered Pants
Jackie Cole
as First Woman
Cisse Cameron
as Second Woman
Frank Corsentino
as Hippie Boy
Mibb Curry
as White-Haired Gentleman
Coleman Francis
as Rotund Drunk
Charles Fox
as Earnest Man
Pam Grier
as Fourth Woman
T.J. Halligan
as Science Teacher
Rick Holmes
as Man with Glasses
Marshall Kent
as Dr. Downs
Michael Kriss
as Young Actor
Tim Laurie
as Second Gay Man
Bebe Louie
as Hippie Girl
Ashley Phillips
as Second Fashion Model
Joyce Rees
as Marion Harrisburg
Chris Riordan
as Second Gay Boy
Bert Santos
as Taxi Driver
George Stratton
as Third Gay Man
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News & Interviews for Beyond the Valley of the Dolls

Critic Reviews for Beyond the Valley of the Dolls

All Critics (28) | Top Critics (4)

This trashy, gaudy, sound-stage vulgarity about low life among the high life is as funny as a burning orphanage.

Dec 17, 2007 | Full Review…
Variety
Top Critic

With his first movie for a major studio, Meyer simply did what he'd been doing for years, only bigger and better.

Jun 24, 2006 | Full Review…
Time Out
Top Critic

Any movie that Jacqueline Susann thinks would damage her reputation as a writer cannot be all bad. Beyond the Valley of the Dolls isn't -- which is not to say it is any good.

May 9, 2005 | Rating: 2.5/5

A psychedelic wow that serves up the free love, plunging necklines, androgynous boys, and lusty lezzies of the era with a narcotized abandon.

Nov 19, 2002 | Full Review…

Beyond the Valley of the Dolls isn't just a cult movie, it's the greatest cult movie ever made.

Oct 31, 2018 | Rating: 5/5 | Full Review…

Never has camp and crazy looked as good!

Apr 11, 2018 | Rating: 9/10 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Beyond the Valley of the Dolls

Hilariously bizarre and well-paced in its escalation of insanity, this Roger Ebert-scripted film is, nonetheless, a sleazy and roughly-edited work of nonsense. It has a lot to say, and even more to show, but it ultimately doesn't feel like it's about anything in general.

Sam Barnett
Sam Barnett

Super Reviewer

This movie is a semi spoof of Valley of the Dolls, and it's very funny. The girls find themselves in crazy situations, there's a lot of crazy orgy parties, and the characters are crazy too. A classic cult film, check it out, I love it.

Aj V
Aj V

Super Reviewer

Absolutley insane and bizarre. I loved it!

Tim Salmons
Tim Salmons

Super Reviewer

I have no idea what the fuck I just watched, but I kind of loved it. This is High Camp, effortless and energetic and unironically involving. I was totally submerged in the bizarre plot until the last ten minutes or so, which I think is an incredible triumph on Russ Meyer's part, until I realized that a woman was being chased around by a breasted man in a cape calling himself Superwoman. There are some things that you simply CAN'T suspend disbelief for, but the movie isn't any weaker for it...it just kicks it back to camp land. Beyond the Valley of the Dolls will probably have zero crossover appeal to anyone who doesn't like shitty movies, which makes me sad. I wouldn't even try to initiate a friend with this, either. The drop into awfulness is very steep and played almost totally straight, which I really admire Dolls for. The only irony you find in the movie is blink-and-you'll-miss-them lines to the audience. I read an interview that Roger Ebert, who wrote the movie, did with someone, in which he claimed that he wrote the film as a parody of violent shitty movies, and the interviewer replied "did the director know this?" Apparently not. And that is good.

Drew Smith
Drew Smith

Super Reviewer

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