Classic Film Series- He’s a Lady: A Brief History of Drag in Film- Tootsie (1982)
Fresh City Life explores the role of male drag and crossdressing in films. Much like classic cabaret drag queens, these films represent one thing on the surface and, for those willing to look for it, reveal so much more through subtext and innuendo. Underneath the makeup and the theatrical dressing and the sharp-tongued rejoinders, there is humanity and understanding and compassion. But there are also laughs. There must always be laughs.
Directed by Sidney Pollack. Starring Dustin Hoffman, Bill Murray, Jessica Lange, Terri Garr. “Michael (Dustin Hoffman) has a bad reputation for taking stands, throwing tantrums, and interpreting roles differently than the director. How to get work? He goes with a friend (Teri Garr) to an audition for a soap opera. The character is a middle-age woman hospital administrator. When his friend doesn't get the job, Michael goes home, thinks, decides to dare, dresses up in drag and goes to the audition himself. And, improvising brilliantly, he gets the role. That leads to the central question of Tootsie: Can a 40-ish New York actor find health, happiness and romance as a 40-ish New York actress?” – Roger Ebert, rogerebert.com. 116 minutes. Rated R.
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