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Paris is Burning at Tampa Theatre
June 16 @ 10:30 pm - 11:30 pm$9
1h 11m / R / Documentary
A primer on the influence ‘80s LGBTQ+ culture had and continues to have on life in the New Twenties, Paris is Burning provides a vibrant snapshot of the time through the eyes of New York City’s Black and Latinx Harlem drag-ball scene. Made over seven years, this landmark documentary offers an intimate portrait of rival fashion “houses,” from fierce contests for trophies to house mothers offering sustenance in a world rampant with homophobia, transphobia, racism, AIDS, and poverty. Featuring legendary voguers, drag queens, and trans women — including Willi Ninja, Pepper LaBeija, Dorian Corey, and Venus Xtravaganza — Paris Is Burning is a radiant beacon of love, celebrating the joy of movement, the courageous might of choosing how to live, and the healing power of community.
REWIND, Tampa Theatre’s home for the sort of movies that make you grab a stranger’s arm and shake vigorously when you learn they’ve never seen, has been running since 2016. And we’ve been wanting to show Paris is Burning for that entire duration. We were always saving it for a better time, or having to choose movies on a different theme, or getting distracted. But we could show Paris is Burning weekly, and it would be the right time. It’s a film of momentous influence, of towering import, and of singular beauty — a flawless documentary. We have every reason to show it, now more than ever. Join us for this long-awaited presentation of the director-supervised 2K digital restoration. And if you’re interested in hearing more about the artistry and profundity of the film, check out filmmaker Michelle Parkerson’s essay “The Fire This Time” at this link.