Facebeater (USA, 8 min)

Directed by: Ali Walker

Facebeater is a short documentary that follows behind the scenes of what it is really like to be a drag queen. This film aims to educate and show what people don’t normally see, such as the process of getting ready, and the personal life of the performer.

Review:

by Hansol (Laura) Park

Directed by Ali Walker, “Facebeater” is a short documentary that follows Jonathan Schindler from his home to his workplace Bottoms Up/Vodka Soda in Hell’s Kitchen, Manhattan, to learn more about the behind the scenes of his drag performance. Jonathan instantly strikes the audience as an amiable individual, who is genuinely passionate about his drag queen identity. We learn about his first exciting venture into drag culture, his detailed preparation process before each performance, and the moral support he gets from his families and friends. With cheerful optimism, he recounts how he turned his unfortunate experience with a date into his stage name “Glamydia Clap.” Jonathan, however, makes it clear that maintaining a drag personality is not always glamorous and fun; it requires constant effort and can also be filled with regular encounters with homophobia, transphobia, and misogyny. The film effectively presents the drag performance as an art form that can endow an individual with the ability to freely express oneself and push the boundaries to wherever one feels fit.

“Facebeater” is an Official Selection of the 9th Annual NYC Independent Film Festival.