Anna Nicole is a cheap, trashy, melodramatic Lifetime original movie that's at times so absurd you can't help but laugh—which perfectly evinces the campy essence of Anna Nicole Smith. Telling the late model's story through tone is genius and director Mary Harron is on to some next-level biopic shit.
What sets really great camp cinema apart from all the other schlock is, as Rich Juzwiak puts it, the "ambiguity of intention." Did Harron mean to make some scenes so nonsensical? (For instance, when Smith is shown barreling down a highway doing lines of cocaine off the dashboard of her convertible—with the top down.) Was having Smith strip to the kind of music you'd hear in a gay club (diva house) instead of the kind you hear in an actual strip club (Buckcherry, Candlebox, etc.) a deliberate choice? Was Oscar-winning actor Martin Landau (who plays Smith's much older, billionaire husband, J. Howard Marshall) aware of how slow-motion wheelchair dancing would translate on the small screen? Did they purposely film Daniel's funeral scene in autumn in Canada so that it looked nothing like the Bahamas? Did Smith actually refer to her stepson and adversary E. Pierce Marshall as "E. Pierce" or was that just a wink at the audience, because that's always how we see his name in news stories? Either way, it's fun to think about!