On Saturday, December 1, Buffalo-Niagara LGBTQ History Project and Squeaky Wheel Film & Media Art Center will be presenting Leilah Weinraub’s SHAKEDOWN (2017), a documentary that recounts the culture surrounding black, lesbian dance and strip parties in the 2000s. The film is being screened at a time when Buffalo’s LGBTQ+ spaces face an uncertain future. The film is touted as being “a tender, hilarious, and utopic portrait of a space and community.”
It is these types of films that can demonstrate the importance of venues that catered segments of the population that would not otherwise have places to flourish. The screening will be hosted by Weinraub, who directed the film. Weinraub was also the CEO and co-founder of clothing company Hood by Air, which was considered revolutionary during its run (2011-2016).
It’s a dreamy glimpse into a scene subjected to outrageous pressures — from the spectral cop of homophobia and even more from the real cops — that was a wellspring of fun, love, desire and good times regardless. – Hannah Black, Dazed
Leilah Weinraub’s bold, immersive documentary, SHAKEDOWN (2017), both enthralls and makes us question how we think about sex and its presentation on camera. A tribute to Weinraub’s talent, the film takes us into the eye of the spectacle — the dance club floor with dynamic, erotic figures of Black female dancers who strip for women — and then elegantly pulls us back. Weinraub finds a place of distance and subtle re-calibration where nothing is what it at first appears. This is a fitting approach for a film that celebrates a communal physical and symbolic space in which one can create a perfectly fluid, slippery identity to be desired and worshipped for — a state of grace, as we come to understand, that still rarely exists outside subaltern club culture. – Ela Bittencourt, Hyperallergic
The film screening will be followed by an afterparty for Dreamland at Sweets Lounge.
Learn more about Varsity Theatre.
Shakedown @ Varsity Theatre
Saturday, December 1, 2018
7 PM – 10 PM
@ Varsity Theatre | 3165 Bailey Avenue | Buffalo NY
Screening + After-party at Sweets Lounge: $20
Lead image: Still courtesy Leilah Weinraub