Audience With the Queens Fails to Capture Key West's Drag Culture | Film Reviews | South Florida | Broward Palm Beach New Times | The Leading Independent News Source in Broward-Palm Beach, Florida

Film Reviews

Audience With the Queens Fails to Capture Key West's Drag Culture

To call Audience With the Queens a documentary would insult the word documentary and burden this little trifle with expectations it can never match. Purporting to be a look at Key West's drag queens, "on and offstage," in practice the film is little more than a half-hour postcard for the 801 Cabaret Club, where nearly all of Audience's stars perform. The banal voice-over narration sounds like it came from a junior high book report ("Key West has many charitable events!"), and most of the film's interview subjects are so far off-mic, you can't hear what they're saying. Not that it matters. The editing is too choppy to allow any of the captured queens to articulate a complete thought — or even, very often, a complete sentence — and even the queens' performance clips are truncated unto meaninglessness. Worse, we learn nothing about their lives — what sustains those brave boys who don dresses and trade career prospects and mainstream respectability for a life of faux fabulousness and real poverty. That's a question filmmaker Robbie Hopcraft never thinks to ask, much less try to answer.

KEEP NEW TIMES BROWARD-PALM BEACH FREE... Since we started New Times Broward-Palm Beach, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of South Florida, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Brandon K. Thorp

Latest Stories