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Queen (The)

USA, English, 68 mins

  • Director: Frank Simon
  • Producer: Lewis M. Allen

CGiii Comment

By no stretch of the imagination could this be called a well-made, carefully considered film.

It's an amateur fly-on-the-wall type of thing...where everyone is playing to the camera.

The only conversation that sparks any interest is...how they [the drag queens] reacted to and avoided the draft - remember Vietnam was kicking and screaming.

With a fleeting glimpse of Warhol and an excruciating performance by Montez...this is social history...and, the only truth revealed is...the drag profession has changed little over the years...crammed full of talentless, bitchy queens...clearly demonstrated by a vile, bullish, jealous queen - the epitome of a bad loser.

A loser indeed.

Somehow, by the end...genuine heartbreak sets in...watch it, you'll understand.


Trailer...

The(ir) Blurb...

Jack is 24, sometimes he's a drag queen named Sabrina. In 1967, as Sabrina, he's the mistress of ceremonies at a national drag queen contest in New York City. The camera goes behind the scenes, recording the rehearsals leading up to the contest, the conversations in the dressing room (about draft boards, sexual identity and sex-change operations, and being a drag queen), and the jealousies that emerge before and after the competition. Jack introduces us to Richard, a young man who becomes Jack's protégé. As Miss Harlow, Richard enters the contest. One of his principal competitors is Miss Crystal, who's from Manhattan. Who will win the crown?


An evocative time capsule, Frank Simon’s debut takes in the sights and sounds of 1967’s Miss All-America Camp Beauty Pageant. Drag artists throughout the land descended upon Town Hall to vie for the title, but, notes emcee Flawless Sabrina, “There can only be one queen.” Praising its humor and its style, Renata Adler saw the film as a revelation: “It shows us another America.”

Cast & Characters

Jim Dine as Himself - Jury Member;
Jack Doroshow as Flawless Sabrina;
Richard Finnochio as Harlow;
Bernard Giquel as Interviewer;
Jerry Leiber as Himself - Jury Member;
Mario Montez as Himself;
George Plimpton as Himself;
Larry Rivers as Himself;
Edie Sedgwick as Herself;
Terry Southern as Himself;
Andy Warhol as Himself

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