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Shakedown: The as-yet Unfinished Documentary about LA’s Black Lesbian Stripclub Scene
01.26.2011
01:15 am
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Via the website kickstarter.com, director Leilah Weinraub is looking to raise $25,000 to finish the final cut of her film Shakedown, before the deadline of Monday 7th of February. Focusing on three main performers, the film is a look inside a black, lesbian strip club in L.A. called, appropriately, Shakedown, and also looks at the history of queer strip clubs in Los Angeles. From the Shakedown2011.com website:

SHAKEDOWN emphasizes the symbiotic nature of how things work in a system. Shakedown’s system functions like a family, put into motion for all the reasons that people need a family, support (financial and emotional), a place of self-growth and a place of self-expression. Through the lens of family, a desire for stability and love, the film meditates on dense topics like three generations of teenage pregnancy, lesbian motherhood, chosen family, and money as a symbol of that love.

Director Weinraub says:

I videotaped the shows at Shakedown every Thursday and Friday night for six years. The first two years I recorded the performances and created video installations at the club. The closed-circuit media making was parallel to the by-women for-women performances that were happening on stage, channeling back an instant history to the creators of the moment. On stage at Shakedown there is a narrative being performed, about sex and sexuality and pop music and the emotional interior of the performers. There is the narrative on the stage, then there is the narrative that is told by the stories of the protagonists in the film, then there is the story that is put together when I edit the film. They all work together.

I’m donating to this film, and so should you - it looks great, and has interest for viewers not just black or queer-identified. You can donate at the Kickstarter website , and there’s an interesting range of gifts for donors too. If you liked Paris Is Burning, check it out:

Posted by Niall O'Conghaile
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01.26.2011
01:15 am
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