Okaaaay, this one was different. It’s not everyday that one gets to see a documentary about Tupperware. And I’m not talking about some scratchy 16mm Coronet Films educational film from the 1970s about how Tupperware is made, either. No, Lisa Udeslon’s off-beat character study “Lifetime Guarantee: Phranc’s Adventures In Plastic” documents the Tupperware selling career of Phranc, a self-described “All-American Jewish Lesbian Folk-singing Surfing Tupperware Lady.” Not exactly the Stepford wife that one might first think of when picturing a Tupperware lady, nor, for that matter, even remotely like your mom, Phranc parlays her extremely butch persona and energetic, highly charismatic personality into a second career as one of Tupperware’s top saleswomen.
“Lifetime Guarantee” is full of interesting factoids. Scraps of minutia such as the tidbit that Tupperware was invented in 1946 by Earl Silas Tupper or that Tupper based the products’ trademark plastic resealable lids on the lids of paint cans.
As quirky as this film is; as unique a personality as its star Phranc possesses, anyone who watches “Lifetime Guarantee” will nonetheless get the sense that they’re witnessing some sort of weird cult in action, all the while wondering why Udelson felt so compelled to make this film in the first place.
Maybe it’s because Phranc is such a unique character that Udelson made “Lifetime Guarantee: Phranc’s Adventures in Plastic;” a documentary that’s a sort of cinematic Tupperware container, preserving its subject for future generations to witness.