MYRA BRECKENRIDGE may be the first punk manifesto, a celebration of pop culture nihilism. A precursor to films by directors like David Lynch, and perhaps influenced by those of avant-garde Italian filmmaker Federico Fellini, this outrageous, searing, blackly comic cult film satirizes Hollywood, homosexuality, America, family, and more.
Myron Breckenridge (Rex Reed) is a frustrated homosexual who undergoes a sex-change operation, against the advice of his doctor. As a result, Myron becomes Myra (Raquel Welch), a stunningly beautiful woman with a rocket of a body. Myra moves to the South and enrolls at a university, where her adventures include sodomizing a Southern man--and stealing his girlfriend while she's at it. In general, the bodacious, lewd Myra wreaks havoc on Southern conventions in this outrageous classic film.
Once thought to be "unfilmable," Gore Vidal's book was the satiric source material for this film. Originally Rated X in 1970, the film may seem less shocking today, but it retains a truly bizarre quality. Among the most memorable moments is the appearance of Mae West, top-billed and still bawdy as ever in her 70s, singing a comically sultry number.