Legend has it that the fabulous drag queen Doris Fish longed to be a movie star. Apparently Doris yearned so strongly that spending his entire nest egg on a dream project that would hopefully throttle his wanna-be star(let) butt into the stratosphere was his only option. The project in question was to be a 30 minute short film entitled “Vegas In Space” that eventually garnered enough interest and capital that it was expanded to full feature length.
The story goes that three male astronauts are enlisted to save the universe, but first they have to change their sex in order to infiltrate the all-female planet of Clitoris. Using the U.S.S. Intercourse as transportation the “girls” arrive safe and sound, and pose as showgirls from Earth. All is going as planned, but soon it is obvious that our hero(ines) are far more interested in swapping fashion tips with their new-found friends rather than doing anything remotely heroic. Fret not, all ends well.
Doris Fish’s brainchild was touted as “The First All-Drag Queen Sci-Fi Musical Ever!” and it probably was, and quite possibly will be the only one ever. The movie was independently made and miraculously lensed entirely in the apartment belonging to the film’s director. Fuse all of this with surrealistic cardboard sets, outlandishly garish costuming, ridiculously over-saturated coloring and a witty script and you’ve just found yourself nestled comfortably between John Waters’ “Desperate Living” and “Priscilla, Queen of the Desert” with more than a pinch of Ed Wood thrown in to boot.
“Vegas In Space” was shot in “Glamourama” over a period of 2 years (1981-1983) but did not see the light of day until after the unfortunate death of the film’s star, Doris Fish, in 1991. Too bad really as Doris would’ve adored the outcome, and stardom of some sort may have actually come his way. There’s no doubt that the movie has its share of short-comings – most notably some amateur acting and a bit of slow pacing, but it really is an ambitious piece of work that should be given more attention than it has currently received.
For this DVD Troma gave us a cast and crew reunion, audio commentary with Phillip R. Ford, the “Vegas In Space” teaser trailer and the usual barrage of trailers and Tromatic goodies.