After jointly winning a local drag queen pageant in New York City, Noxeema Jackson and Vida Boheme win the right and are given the round trip airfare to compete in the Drag Queen of America pageant in Hollywood, California. Noxeema sees herself as the next Dorothy Dandridge, who bucked the trend of most black American movie actresses of her time by never playing the slave house maid. Vida's style reflects her past of growing up in upper class suburban Pennsylvania. One of their fellow New York City contestants, Chi-Chi Rodriguez, is a straight-talking, but naive and inexperienced drag queen. Seeing that Chi-Chi needs some drag queen confidence (despite her bravada), Vida and a reluctant Noxeema decide to cash in their plane tickets and buy an older model Cadillac convertible and drive to Hollywood with Chi-Chi. Their drive takes them through much of the country where alternate lifestyles are less tolerated than they may be in New York City or Los Angeles. The three have an extended ...

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I vividly remember the advance publicity surrounding this movie and thinking "Gee, these guys must really be comfortable in their own space not to even worry about any repercussions!." I love this movie more so because it was during this advance publicity that my own drag queen brother died; he was so thoroughly looking forward to seeing this movie. So from that standpoint, each and every time I see it, it is quite uplifting for it reminds me of him. Even more so, neither Wesley, Patrick, or John made a mockery of drag queens but reveled in playing them to the hilt. Of course, the highlight was RuPaul, as last year's drag queen beauty winner, emerging at the contest in a confederate gown! I could imagine the South just having a hissy fit at that! But the movie celebrates differences and is warm. Those who claim it had a weak plot and it wasn't this and it wasn't that simply need to get a grip. This is a classic example of being unable to see the forest for the trees. Of course there are movies with stronger plots, better direction, more intense performances BUT WHO CARES????!... If you want a nice uplifting movie that teaches a lesson that we, in 2003, STILL HAVE NOT LEARNED, then the lesson itself can NEVER be trite. When you forget our differences and concentrate on our similarities, you'd be surprised at the progress we make! This is a really cute movie with wonderful performances which lift the spirit and really does make one think. If you are looking for a literary masterpiece, go get one - this ain't it - it's better - it is simply fun, something too many lose sight of in their quest to appear pseudo-intellectual! Not to mention, the movie has loads of laughs!

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