Transsexual performer Candy Darling was special – even among the iridescent figures of New York’s subculture of the sixties and seventies. Lou Reed, Tennessee Williams, Richard Avedon, Cecil Beaton and Robert Mappelthorpe were all inspired by her, and Andy Warhol created a monument to her in Flesh. But just how did this Brooklyn boy become such a glamorous phenomenon, an underground icon of a decade still revered today in films, photographs, songs and short stories? Assisted by Candy’s long-standing partner Jeremiah Newton, filmmaker James Rasin sets off in search of the story behind the dazzling spectacle that is Candy Darling. A plethora of photos, finds and films from the estate of the late star who died of leukaemia in 1974, as well as unique archive material tell the story of a wild, bohemian existence of the kind that was only possible in New York in the sixties and seventies. They also tell the story of a life lived between legendary night clubs such as “Max’s Kansas City”, appearances in off-off-Broadway shows, and working at Andy Warhol’s factory.
Lou Reed: “Candy came from out on the Island / In the backroom she was everybody’s darlin’ / But she never lost her head / Even when she was giving head / She says, Hey babe / Take a walk on the wild side / I Said, Hey baby / Take a walk on the wild side / And the coloured girls go / Doo do doo do doo do do doo …” –Berlinale
Candy Darling was someone truly special. She was more than a drag queen, but a true vision of femdom the definition of a woman trapped in the wrong body. This documentary doesn't really cover any new ground but is full of long unseen footage and the memories of those who knew her even if those memories contradict themselves. A film that joins the long list of "factory warhol" documentaries.
"Denis Villeneuve's Incendies — an operatic saga of intergenerational woe — is the cinematic equivalent of a Harlem Globetrotters