For those that think watching classic films can be a drag, the Bill Cosford Cinema’s new series, Flaming Classics, is going to prove you right. Organized by local cinephiles Juan Barquin and Trae DeLellis, the events pair feature films with live shows by Miami drag queens.
Barquin and DeLellis have mined the canon of cult and camp film favorites to create a line up of screenings that runs from May 28 through Aug. 6, aptly named “Summer Camp.” Kicking it off is the Robert Aldrich classic “What Ever Happened to Baby Jane?”
The disturbing 1962 film starring Bette Davis and Joan Crawford as two sisters with the worst relationship ever will be screened on 35 mm followed by a live performance by Jupiter Velvet and Evan Alexander.
The selected films are feminine, queer, camp, and everything in between, says Barquin, because they wanted “to spotlight films that explore and dismantle gender, sexuality and identity, with humor, shock, etc.” This is essentially what drag queens do as well.
The idea to merge drag and film arose from some very lively discourse after watching local drag shows, says DeLellis. “After seeing some spectacular drag performers at The Corner’s Counter Corner and Gramps’ Double Stubble, we’d have these lengthy, probably overly passionate discussions about each performance, unpacking the layers of camp, exploring the iconography and searching for the myriad of influences. The discussions were always entangled with our favorite films and movie stars.”
Drag queens Jupiter Velvet and Evan Alexander will be joined by Queef Latina and Miss Toto to perform on different dates throughout the summer.
“Not only are we really excited to see our favorite films on the big screen, we are pumped to see the way that these performers honor, desecrate and reinterpret the works into a one-of-kind must see experience,” DeLellis adds.
FLAMING CLASSICS: SUMMER CAMP FULL SCHEDULE
Tickets will be sold through Eventbrite both online for $9 and at the door for $11, with additional fees, giving audiences a chance to enjoy a film and a drag performance that isn’t restricted to a 21+ locale.
WHAT EVER HAPPENED TO BABY JANE? (Robert Aldrich, 1962) – 134 min
Described upon release as “a lurid melodrama of hate, revenge and murder, a high-class horror film, in the Hitchcock vein, with virtuoso performances from Bette Davis and Joan Crawford, and moments both searing and poignant,” by The Hollywood Reporter, What Ever Happened to Baby Jane? is a must-watch for fans of Davis and Crawford, as well as those unfamiliar with their work. Live performances by Jupiter Velvet and Evan Alexander (whiteandpopular). Introduction by Juan Barquin.
This 35mm presentation screens at 8 p.m. Sunday, May 28
BUT I’M A CHEERLEADER (Jamie Babbit, 1999) – 85 min
Celebrate Vice President Mike Pence’s birthday with the classic conversion camp comedy But I’m A Cheerleader. The film stars Natasha Lyonne, Cathy Moriarty, Clea DuVall, Melanie Lynskey, Michelle Williams, and iconic drag queen RuPaul, in a heartfelt satire about what happens when a young woman is sent to conversion therapy camp. Live performance by Jupiter Velvet. Introduction TBA.
This film screens at 8 p.m. Sunday, June 11
GENTLEMEN PREFER BLONDES (Howard Hawks, 1953) – 91 min
Watch Marilyn Monroe and Jane Russell cruise for men and diamonds aboard a ship to Paris, where they’re surrounded by doting admirers, private detectives, and a bevy of beautiful bodybuilders. The iconic film inspired a multitude of artists, ranging from Madonna (“Material Girl”) to Baz Luhrmann (Moulin Rouge) with its gorgeous musical numbers. Live performance by Miss Toto. Introduction by Miami Classic Movie Club’s Stefanie Del Papa.
This 35mm presentation screens at 8 p.m. Sunday, June 25th
SERIAL MOM (John Waters, 1994) – 95 min
Provoc-auteur John Waters perverted the clean wholesome image of the American mom in his subversive suburban comedy Serial Mom. Bolstered by a superb performance by Kathleen Turner, Serial Mom is one of Waters’ best satires. Live performance by Queef Latina. Introduction by Daniel Blair AKA DJ Hottpants.
This 35mm presentation screens at 8 p.m. Sunday, July 9
FASTER, PUSSYCAT! KILL! KILL! (Russ Meyers, 1965) – 83 min
Perhaps the epitome of cult classic, Russ Meyer’s Faster Pussycat! Kill! Kill! is filled to the brim with fast cars, dangerous curves, and killer women. The leader of the sexploitation genre, Russ Meyer’s oeuvre is now examined for its critique of patriarchy and undeniable feminist slant. Live performance by Miss Toto. Introduction Vivian Marthell, Co-Founder of O Cinema.
This 35mm presentation screens at 8 p.m. Sunday, July 23
PSYCHO BEACH PARTY (Robert Lee King, 2000) – 95 min
The perfect way to end your summer vacation, Psycho Beach Party blends together an intoxicating melange of surfer film, psycho-sexual melodrama, and slasher. Full of camp, double entendres, and sexual deviancy, Psycho Beach Party is the ultimate unknown cult classic. Live performance by Queef Latina. Introduction by Trae DeLellis.
This 35mm presentation screens at 8 p.m. Sunday, August 6