2. PRETTY POISON (1968)
Director: Noel Black
James Gunn says: My second favorite dark comedy is a movie that not many people know about, and it’s called Pretty Poison. It stars Tuesday Weld, who is at her absolute hottest. She’s the old movie actress, a little blonde ingénue who was so hot in this movie, and that probably influenced me a little bit in terms of how much I like it. [Laughs.]
It also starred Anthony Perkins from Psycho, and it’s a black comedy about this young girl. In fact, I can quite certainly say that Pretty Poison influenced Super because it’s about this young innocent-seeming girl who just gets crazier and crazier and darker and darker, and Ellen Page’s character is a lot like that in Super.
It’s a cult movie that not many people have seen, but it was just released on DVD not too long ago. It’s really well worth seeing. One of the things about Pretty Poison is that I had a book as a kid called Cult Movies, written by Danny Peary. I was really into cult movies when I was like 14, 15 years old, and one of the movies in the book was Pretty Poison.
For years, I tried to see this movie. I even remember trying to set up a screening at Warner Bros. one time but I was unable to. I wasn’t able to see the movie until a few years ago, and not only did I like it, I loved it. It met my expectations, and that so seldom happens. So many times people talk up these movies with these great premises and then when you see them they just don’t work. But this movie is fantastic.