Screening Dates
  • July 25, 2019 6:30
  • July 26, 2019 8:40
  • July 29, 2019 6:30
  • July 31, 2019 8:40
New Restoration

A gorgeous, provocative look at an LGBTQ subculture existing in the face of intense discrimination … Stop reading this and go watch the film.”

Eleanor Stanford, New York Times

You. Own. Everything.” Just in time for Pride, Jennie Livingston’s invaluable and eternally enthralling record of the Harlem drag ball scene of the 1980s sashays into The Cinematheque in a brilliant new restoration! Realness, reading, mopping, walking: Paris is Burning is a veritable textbook on the then-underground culture and lexicon of drag balls, where shade-throwing queens from rival Houses compete for legendary status in a series of fiercely competitive, rigorously judged runway walk-offs. Beneath the opulence and pageantry is a deeply felt portrait of marginalized Black and Latinx gay men and trans women navigating a dangerous world of homophobia, transphobia, racism, poverty, and AIDS. Released shortly after Madonna ushered voguing” into the mainstream, Livingston’s canonical documentary features iconic walkers Willi Ninja, Pepper LaBeija, Dorian Corey, and Venus Xtravaganza, and werk-ready hits by Cheryl Lynn and Diana Ross.

Profound … One of the best documentaries of all time.”