Wow, Jennie Livingston’s incredible documentary Paris is Burning, about vogueing gangs and balls, is on YouTube. This was a formative New York City film for me. I’ve given talks about it in church, even. I found it one of the purest most universal expressions of the common motivations that drive all our lives, whether we’re gay, black, homeless, cross-dressing street hustlers or not–love, family, belonging, comfort, security, survival, normalcy, respect–all things I take my entitlement to utterly for granted.
It’s one of the biggest film world mystery/disappointments that Livingston hasn’t made more movies. Guess I need to circle back and watch Who’s on Top?, her Busby Berkeley-style musical lesbian sex comedy. Don’t know how I’ll work that one into the sunday school lesson.
Paris is Burning 1/11 [youtube via smashingtelly.com and kottke]