SXSW Day 6 (I Am Divine)
Ryan Revolver
3/14/2013

 

Movie: I Am Divine


Synopsis: I Am Divine is the story of Divine, aka Harris Glenn Milstead, from his humble beginnings as an overweight, teased Baltimore youth to internationally recognized drag superstar through his collaboration with filmmaker John Waters. Spitting in the face of the status quos of body image, gender identity, sexuality, and preconceived notions of beauty, Divine was the ultimate outsider turned underground royalty. With a completely committed in-your-face style, he blurred the line between performer and personality, and revolutionized pop culture. "I Am Divine" is a definitive biographical portrait that charts the legendary icon’s rise to infamy and emotional complexities.

 

What I thought: If you are familiar with the name Divine you are probably going to say “oh that’s the John Waters character that ate dog poop.” That’s how I knew Divine. I had never thought to sink deeper with a dual Wikipedia/IMDB search. The creature was much more than just an eater of feces for the camera, which you will learn with I Am Divine. A complex creature that had vices just like everyone else (no I’m not talking about the cross-dressing). I cannot remember who called Divine a "cinematic terrorist," but if I got called that I would take it as the ultimate compliment. This documentary excels at showing the viewer a multifaceted entertainer. Underneath the 30 pounds of makeup and huge wigs was someone just wanting to be a star. Hell, don't we all want to be stars?


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