Monday, September 12, 2011

Paris Is Burning

The other day I told someone, I see so many films, I wish I could write about all of them as well; but no, I cannot; first time, time is the culprit, and then my own shortcomings. You cannot really talk about the issues that affect you so much. Sometimes words becomes inadequate to express the matters of the heart.

I wish I could write some wonderful stuff about this wonderful documentary, ‘Paris is Burning’ (1990). It reflects the vestiges of a time long lost; a moment of triumph, before the inevitable end...

Wikipedia tells me: Paris Is Burning is a 1990 documentary film directed by Jennie Livingston. Filmed in the mid-to-late 1980s, it chronicles the ball culture of New York City and the African American, Latino, gay and transgender communities involved in it. Many members of the ball culture community consider Paris Is Burning to be an invaluable documentary of the end of the "Golden Age" of New York City drag balls, as well as a thoughtful exploration of race, class, and gender in America. More Here.

Writes Jesse Green of The New York Times: Drag is variously explained as destruction of the male within or the female without. For Dorian and for many of Angie's other mourners, drag is not a means of destruction but of rescue -- a little beauty, however perverse and rococo. This is the achievement that Ms. Livingston indelibly recorded: the victory of imagination over poverty. But the victory is Pyrrhic at best. The movie's title may come from the name of Paris DuPree's ball, by which she meant only that the competition would be hot, but the phrase itself has a darker history. "Paris brennt?" ("Is Paris burning?") Hitler asked , wondering whether the city had fallen. And though Paris, France survived, the Paris of Ms. Livingston's movie -- and all it depicted -- may not. Read the full article Here.

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