A documentary look, mostly through the eyes of Tammy Faye Bakker Messner, at her rise and fall as a popular televangelist with husband Jim Bakker. Traces their rise: her teen marriage to Jim; their children’s TV show (she was a puppeteer and singer), success founding the 700 Club, co-founding the Trinity Broadcast Network, and starting PTL Network; her nondenominational version of Christianity reaching out to all; and, their building of Heritage USA, a theme park. Things fall apart as money woes mount for Heritage and for Jim, as Tammy takes pills, and as Jerry Falwell takes PTL. Jim goes to prison; she remarries, finds herself alone again, yet remains unsinkable. –IMDb
With his partner Randy Barbato, producer and director Fenton Bailey made his name with documentaries about such outrageous yet fascinating pop-culture subjects as the wife of disgraced TV evangelist Jim Bakker in The Eyes of Tammy Faye (2000), before branching out into dramatic films with the feature version of their 1998 documentary Party Monster in 2003.
Born in Great Britain, Bailey attended graduate film school in the U.S. at New York University, where he met life and business partner Barbato. The pair dropped out of school to form their production company World of Wonder in 1990; they also performed as a tongue-in-cheek musical duo called the Pop Tarts. Bailey and Barbato turned to filmmaking in earnest, however, when they decided to amuse themselves by editing together choice clips from New York City’s racy and bizarre public access cable TV shows, and turned it into the British TV series Manhattan Cable. Stateside, World of Wonder produced the series Hollywood Fashion… read more
With his life and creative partner Fenton Bailey, filmmaker Randy Barbato carved a distinctive niche in film and television with his nonfiction works about such intriguing pop-culture subjects as the infamously groomed ex-wife of fallen TV evangelist Jim Bakker in The Eyes of Tammy Faye (2000), before trying his hand at dramatic features with the adaptation of his and Bailey’s documentary Party Monster (1998) in 2003.
A native of New Jersey, Barbato attended graduate film school at New York University in the late ‘80s, where he met classmate and fellow pop-culture enthusiast Bailey. Along with dabbling in music as the Pop Tarts, the pair dropped out of N.Y.U. to form their production company, World of Wonder, in 1990. Based in their tiny New York apartment, World of Wonder notched its first production with the series Manhattan Cable, a compilation of clips from New York City’s strange and risqué public-access cable programs, for British TV. Barbato and Bailey subsequently executive… read more
Makes you feel bad for ever hating Tammy Faye and Jim Bakker just because of PTL and Heritage USA. Supremely subversive truth-telling.
Surprised by this one. The campiness wasn't overdone, just the right dose. When I was a child during the '80s, all I knew about Tammy Faye was she cried a lot and had big, mascara-covered eyelashes, but this documentary provided me with a far more interesting woman than I'd expected. It's an all-around entertaining and informative film.
I love Tammy Faye Bakker so SO much after watching this documentary. I used to think she was kooky, but now I think she is kooky but also an angel. If you're interested in televangelists (the good and the evil,)as well as the life of Tammy Faye Bakker (really, really interesting!) this is an absolutely brilliant documentary.