Queerantined

Daily Dose: A city on fire calls us to the flame

Paris Is Burning (Photo: Janus Films)

Welcome to Queerty’s latest entry in our series, Queerantined: Daily Dose. Every weekday as long as the COVID-19 pandemic has us under quarantine, we’ll release a suggested bit of gloriously queer entertainment designed to keep you from getting stir crazy in the house. Each weekend, we will also suggest a binge-able title to keep you extra engaged.

The Legendary: Paris is Burning

Long before Pose, Drag Race and Madonna’s “Vogue” helped bring ballroom fabulousity to the mainstream, the culture existed as an underground safe zone for LGBTQ people to experiment and explore gender, style and self-expression. Paris is Burning documents the story of ballroom during the 1980s, at the height of the AIDS crisis when the community–in particular, transgender people and people of color–gathered to celebrate life with dance and music. Though director Jennie Livingston does not shy away from the adversity and cruelty the subjects of her film face on a day-to-day basis, she focuses more on their hope and dreams of aspiring models like Venus Xtravaganza and Octavia St. Laurent, and Willi Ninja, the groundbreaking choreographer. Rarely does a movie teem with such life, or such joy. We could use a bit of both at the moment.

Streams on Netflix and YouTube.