Behind the Burly Q - The Story of Burlesque in America (2010) DVD9
This illuminating documentary focuses on the rise of burlesque in America during its golden age in the early 20th Century. The art of burlesque travelled from Britain to America where it evolved from comedic plays to a show with barely naked women who danced as merely a form of entertainment for the audience. Striptease eventually became incorporated as part of their act, but anyone fully aware and knowledgeable of burlesque would be able to know that burlesque was much more than merely a bunch of strippers performing live. Burlesque shows featured dancers, singers, comedians and even acrobats, so it wasn’t all about showing skin. Back then, the art of burlesque was so risque that the mayor of New York in 1937 went to the extent of closing down burlesque venues. To this very day, the burlesque is a misunderstood and underappreciated part of history that the public deserves to be enlightened and aware about, Director Leslie Zemeckis wisely includes a wide variety of interviews with the burlesque strippers themselves such as Beverly Anderson Traube, Tempest Storm, Blaze Star, Dixie Evans, Sherry Britton, Kitty West, Betty Rowland and more. Each of them reminisces about their experiences during the golden age of burlesque which helps to shed light on what it was truly like to be an entertainer over 70 years ago. They openly and bravely discuss their long-buried feelings and thoughts about burlesque which, in a way, makes the film seem like a collection of diaries, memories and glimpses of such an underrated art form. In an amusing anecdote, actor Alan Alda recalls what it was like to be around his father, Robert Alda, a "tit singer" who sang while burlesque strippers performed. Will audiences who never experienced burlesque be able to fully grasp what burlesque was like? Perhaps not as fully as those who did get to experience watching it , but at least, given all of the insightful interviews combined with the brief archival footage, Behind the Burly Q is the closest that you can get to that particular, one-of-a-kind experience. At a running time of 1 hour and 38 minutes, Behind the Burly Q manages to be a captivating, illuminating and delightfully amusing celebration of a long-lost and misunderstood art form.

DVD9 | NTSC 16:9 | 01:37:44 | 6.63 Gb + 3% rec
Language: English (Dolby AC3, 2 ch)
Subtitles: English
Genre: Documentary

Director: Leslie Zemeckis
Cast: Alan Alda, Joan Arline, Beverly Arlynne, Al Baker Jr., Ron Bottitta, Lou Costello
Country: USA

• Three Featurettes:
- The Reunion
- Memorabilia & Costumes
- Behind the Scenes
• Bonus Interviews
• Burlesque Timeline
• Photo Gallery
• Original Theatrical Trailer

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