Paper Dolls (2006)
1h 20min · Documentary · 26 October 2006
Paper Dolls is a documentary film by award winning filmmaker Tomer Heymann about a group of transvestite Filipinos who emigrate to Israel to take care of elderly religious Jewish men. On their one day off per week, they perform as drag performers in a group called the Paper Dolls. On the political level, it explores the perils of global immigration. In this case, after the second Intifada, the Israeli government unofficially opened its doors to illegal workers to replace the Palestinians who were no longer allowed in the country. As tensions with the Palestinians eased, the government changed its policy and began to forcibly deport these foreign guest workers with dramatic consequences for our characters. On the human level, the film is about people who are rejected by their own families for being gay/transvestite and who emigrate and end up with jobs taking care of other people's parents who have been rejected by their own children because they are old, difficult, etc. They work grueling hours to send money back to the Philippines to support the families that have rejected them. As unbelievable as it may seem, these very different people (old religious Jews and transvestites from the Philippines) form very deep, quasi familial bonds.
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