Superstar: The Karen Carpenter Story

Director: Todd Haynes
Year Released: 1987
Rating: 3.0

Impressive pastiche film based on the tragic life of Karen Carpenter, whose obsession with her weight led to her demise in her thirties. Haynes clearly sympathizes with her, so his treatment - which includes Barbie Dolls dressed up like the people in Carpenter's life and elaborate toy sets - is more heartfelt than flippant; he only overdoes it with the excessive shots of houses in suburbia and some flashes of what appears to be Holocaust footage. For being a 'banned' film - legal trouble has prevented it from being officially released - it certainly has made its rounds and isn't hard to find, which is a testament to Haynes' do-it-yourself inventiveness.