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Queen of shade 'Auntie Mame' on the big screen in San Diego

Rosalind Russell is Auntie Mame
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The queen of all eccentric aunts is making her way back to the big screen in San Diego, and if you’re a fan of classic comedy you won’t want to miss it.

FilmOut is presenting “Auntie Mame” in all its Technicolor glory at the Landmark Cinema’s Hillcrest Theatre on Wednesday, December 14, and it’s going to be a fun night out.

Rosalind Russell originated the role on Broadway, then reprised it for the 1958 film.

It tells the story of the ups-and-downs of depression era socialite Mame Dennis after she becomes responsible for her nephew Patrick, starched by the upbringing of his conservative family.

After his father dies, he is left in the care of his progressive and boisterous aunt who hosts wild parties and invites everyone to “Live, live, live!”

A downturn in the economy sparks the great depression and Mame’s way-of-life is severely affected, but she never loses her panache or love of Patrick.

The movie was a huge success in 1959 and garnered many Academy Award nominations including Best Picture.

But aside from the industry details, audiences have reveled for decades in Mame’s casual one-liners and penchant for diversity while still serving as a soundboard for continuous shade:

Patrick Dennis: Is the English lady sick, Auntie Mame?

Mame Dennis: She's not English, darling... she's from Pittsburgh.

Patrick Dennis: She sounded English.

Mame Dennis: Well, when you're from Pittsburgh, you have to do something.

There is nothing too risqué for Mame and she is constantly cracking-wise about life’s realities to her nephew.

Patrick Dennis (reading from a list): ...Neurotic, heterosexual...

Mame Dennis: Oh, my my my my, what an eager little mind. You won't need some of these words for months and months.

“Auntie Mame” has had quite the following in the gay community because it managed to bypass the restrictive, censor-heavy Hays Code which outlined things that were banned from being discussed in film. 

One of those topics was homosexuality, which “Mame” covertly bypasses with underlying innuendo, even though in the book on which the film is based, Mame is not beyond throwing around some stinging epithets herself.

However the movie mostly follows the Broadway play and in effect has made Mame a gay icon and perhaps inspiration for drag queens worldwide. 

If you’re a fan of the film, or haven’t seen it yet, take advantage of this opportunity to see it on the big screen and enjoy it as audiences did 60 years ago.

Mame says it herself, “Life is a banquet and most poor suckers are starving to death!”

FilmOut presents “Auntie Mame” at the Hillcrest Landmark Theaters – Hillcrest on Wednesday Dec. 14 at 7 pm.

You can purchase tickets HERE.