Director: Ron Davis, Stewart Halpern-Fingerhut
Runtime: 94 minutes
TV Rating: TVMA
Pageant is a 2008 documentary film directed and produced by Ron Davis and Stewart Halpern. The film explores the behind-the-scenes dramas and realities of the 34th Miss Gay America Contest. The film’s central theme is the universal desire to be beautiful, noticed and chosen. The film garnered 10 film festival awards before airing on the Sundance Channel in 2010.
While some reviewers, such as Martin Tsai from the Village Voice felt that the film only skimmed along the surface insanity saying that “filmmakers Ron Davis and Stewart Halpern-Fingerhut’s treatment is only skin-deep, eschewing any exploration of gender politics or psychological effects induced by the ubiquitous ugly-duckling-turned-swan narrative “ other reviewers such as Nathan Lee in the New York Times felt that it was “ not without its charm, and it’s touching, in a goofy sort of way, to see how seriously everyone takes it.” George Williamson in An Eye for FIlm Uk described it as “… an entertaining portrait of some wonderfully larger than life characters, a mind blowing amount of effort and an incredible desire to win.” Audience reviews were generally positive.