Thursday, December 13, 2007

Paper Dolls

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This Israeli-produced documentary, directed by Israeli Tomm Heymann, follows a group of Filipino drag performers, known as "The Paper Dolls", who also work as caregivers for the elderly in an orthodox suburb in Israel. The early moment when Giorgio, a Filipino hairstylist, started conversing in Hebrew, the movie had me enthralled. This is one fascinating, revealing, ultimately great portrait of my fellow Filipinos and fellow gays who are also living in a more extreme otherness.

The journey takes us deep and far, with highlights such as a dream performance at a famous Tel Aviv nightclub that turns into sad disillusionment, an offbeat intergenerational friendship between a caregiver and his charge, and the ominous fear of deportation that depicts a larger view of the plight of immigrant workers. Through it all, the transsexual Pinoys display an admirable and inspiring dignity, and so does the movie. I fell in love with it.

GRADE: A

Now showing. For showtimes, click here.

Related Links:
Film Trailer
Trailer at YouTube
Reviews at Rottemtomatoes
Review at Film-Forward
Negative Review at Fipresci
Buy DVD

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