Iconic and influential, PARIS IS BURNING returns to theatres just in time for Pride – with a new restoration supervised by director Jennie Livingston.
Where does vogue-ing come from, and what, exactly, is “throwing shade?” This landmark documentary provides a vibrant snapshot of the 1980s through the eyes of New York City’s African American and Latinx Harlem drag ball scene. Made over seven years, PARIS IS BURNING offers an intimate portrait of rival fashion “houses,” from fierce contests for trophies, to house mothers offering sustenance in a world rampant with homophobia and 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 brings it, celebrating the joy of movement, the force of eloquence, and the draw of community.
Digitally remastered by the UCLA Film and Television Archive in conjunction with Sundance Institute and Outfest UCLA Legacy Project. Preservation funded by Sundance Institute, Outfest and the Andrew J. Kuehn Jr. Foundation.
“For anyone who’s ever felt like an outsider, Paris is Burning is a reassuring reminder that someone somewhere totally gets you.” (POV Magazine)
“A film about resistance, passion and the determined reclamation of cultural space, Paris Is Burning has been tremendously influential, and is essential viewing for any student of the issues it concerns or of the documentary form.” (Eye For Film)
Wednesday, September 4
Doors 6:15 pm | Movie 6:45 pm
Advance tickets $10.50 HERE | $12.50 at the door
*Must be 19+ w/ID for bar service and main floor seating. Minors welcome in the balcony.
**Rio Theatre Groupons and passes OK! Please redeem at the door.
PARIS IS BURNING (Jennie Livingston, 1990 / 71 mins / PG) This documentary focuses on drag queens living in New York City and their “house” culture, which provides a sense of community and support for the flamboyant and often socially shunned performers. Groups from each house compete in elaborate balls that take cues from the world of fashion. Also touching on issues of racism and poverty, the film features interviews with a number of renowned drag queens, including Willi Ninja, Pepper LaBeija and Dorian Corey.