RuPaul’s Drag Race, for all its flaws, has become a staple of the reality television calendar. Mixing pop culture with petty drama, Drag Race provides light entertainment to audiences regardless of sexuality and gender – and highlights some of the greatest talents of the queer community at the same time. The show may have become more mainstream, but one thing has remained: the infamous lip-sync for your life, a two minute battle between contestants to establish who truly has the charisma, uniqueness, nerve and talent to impress the all-seeing, all-powerful RuPaul.
To celebrate ten fantastic seasons of the show, I’m taking a trip down memory lane and counting down my favourite lip-syncs in Drag Race her-story.
Trigger warning: Bryan Singer, sexual assault, sexual abuse against minors.
This essay is by our guest writer, Lindsay Miller.
It was announced a few days ago that Bryan Singer would be receiving directing credits for the upcoming Queen/Freddie Mercury biopic, despite being fired three months into principal photography due to his “unexpected availability” on set. And while his replacement, Dexter Fletcher, directly expressed not wanting the credits himself in an interview last month, this brings up yet another issue in the ongoing saga that I like to call: Bohemian Rhapsody Hell.
I was not planning on seeing this movie before this news was announced. I love Queen and I love Rami Malek, but nothing about this project really seemed to spark my interest besides the awesome photos of Malek in that Mercury Mustache™ . It just kinda seemed like the standard music biopic that comes out once a year to pretty good reviews but is then altogether forgotten in six weeks time. It is rare for movies of this nature to transcend the border of mediocrity, either due to the film itself or because of poor marketing. When both elements are seemingly in sync, you get a hit like Walk The Line or Ray but when one of them fails, you get duds like CBGB.
To many, Bohemian Rhapsody seems to be on the fast track to success thanks to Malek’s casting (“Somebody just give Rami his Oscar already”) and the overall attention the movie is getting from the media. But despite my overall apathy, I really cannot bring myself to support this film in theaters for one reason and one reason only: Bryan Singer.
EIFF may not be the biggest event on everyone’s calendars but it’s the world’s longest continually-running film festival. For the next 2 weeks, Scotland’s capital will play host to British world premieres, festival circuit favourites, and plenty of smaller films looking to find distribution. Two of our writers, Iana and Hannah, are attending this year and highlight a few of the films they are excited to see from this year’s eclectic programme.
Romantic comedies don’t sell as many theatre tickets as they used to a decade ago, but if Set It Up is any indication, Netflix is their future. Enjoying something on the streaming giant has been an unfamiliar feeling this year, but with 90% on Rotten Tomatoes, Set It Up is the site’s highest-rated original film of the year so far. It’s an enjoyable watch for a genre that has had some great hits, and equally as many misses, but director Claire Scanlon’s film is funny and charming in the way that a good rom-com should be.
When your family rushes to the cinema to see Incredibles 2 this weekend, be sure you head there on time and bring a box of tissues while you’re at it. Pixar’s newest short film, Bao, plays right before every screening of the new animated sequel, and in my opinion, it might be their best short yet. It follows the story of a Chinese-Canadian mother adjusting to her empty nest, who one day creates a little dumpling child to take care of. This eight-minute animated short is home to some of the best high-grade animation, a beautiful score, and delicious animated food. But Bao is so much more than just a technical demo for Pixar – it also serves as a cultural piece! Told through visual storytelling, Bao captures the essence of a 1st and 2nd generation Chinese immigrant household and their family dynamics, as well as paying tribute to the love of Asian mothers.
There’s a lot to love about this short if you come from a family of Asian immigrants. The immediate thing I noted was the expressive, chibi-like art style that manages to successfully cartoonize Asian features, but doesn’t do so in a racist, caricaturist fashion. But thinking about the short since I saw it last Friday, I realized that it made me feel so much more validated and represented than most times I see myself in Western, Asian-targeted media. I then found out that the film was actually directed by a Chinese-Canadian woman, Domee Shi. Bao is the first Pixar short ever to be directed by a woman of any ethnicity, so already this short has made history and garnered lots of praise. I particularly want to highlight the successful way it captured the experiences of coming from a family of Chinese immigrants.
We may only be halfway through the year, but there have already been plenty of great movies to sink our teeth into. From slow-burn indie darlings to crowd-pleasing blockbusters, the past six months have provided something for all tastes, proving that we don’t have to be mid-awards season to experience great cinema. Check out the following 15 films that we think are the best of the best:
This article is by our guest writer, Isabelle Miller.
Happy pride everyone! During the month of June, we reflect on the Stonewall Riots of 1969 and the activists who started the LGBTQ movement. It’s a time to advocate for the LGBTQ community, celebrate their culture, and naturally, watch some great films (though, when is there not a good time for this?). In the late 1970s, artist Gilbert Baker decided to create a flag in representation of the LGBTQ community. Today, the rainbow flag represents LGBTQ pride all across the world. The different colors carry various meanings such as life, healing, sunlight, peace, spirit, sex, art/magic, people of color, and HIV/AIDS.
In celebration of pride month, here’s a list of LGBTQ films based on some of those colors!