Beth B takes us into the 21st century underground and reveals a secret world where cutting-edge performers are taking hold of a taboo art form, Burlesque, and driving it to extremes that most people have never seen. It’s satire. It’s parody. It’s a populist blend of art and entertainment that gives new meaning to the word “transgression.” Above all, it’s a lot of fun, and it will blow your mind.
EXPOSED features performances by Rose Wood, Julie Atlas Muz, Mat Fraser, Dirty Martini, Bunny Love, Bambi the Mermaid, World Famous *Bob* & Tigger! These 8 female and male artists use their nakedness to transport us beyond the last sexual and social taboos.
Operating on the far edge of Burlesque, they combine politics and physical comedy to question the very concept of “normal.” Through them, we get to examine our own inhibitions.
Beth B has followed the lead characters with a “fly-on-the-wall” camera over several years, capturing rehearsals, backstage preparations, private struggles and triumphs, and the extraordinary performances. The film’s unique perspective allows us, the audience, into the clubs and other hidden spaces where these artists perform. This shocking and comedic art form thrives in the after-dark hours and cult venues of major metropolitan areas — renowned spots such as The Box, Coney Island Sideshow, Casa Mezcal, and The Slipper Room, founded by James Habacker, who also appears in the film.
This performance art is powerful and enlightening because it challenges traditional notions of body, gender, and sexuality. The body types of the performers range from statuesque to transgender to disabled. Their personalities are scintillating, yet very real. They may be part of a unique subculture, but they come from surprisingly diverse economic and social backgrounds. As they peel away their clothes – describing their journeys and commenting on their performances – they peel away our own preconceptions and inhibitions. Ancient moral, religious and sexual shibboleths are seen from new perspectives, and a new generation of the cultural avant-garde comes to light.
Certificate: 18 Distributor: Matchbox Films/Verve Pictures
Dir. Beth B,US, 2013, 77 mins
Cast (as themselves): Julie Atlas Muz, Mat Fraser, James Habacker
WARNING – This trailer includes explicit images.