WHEN THE BEAT DROPS
Running Time: 85min
Film Year: 2018
Category: Knight Documentary Achievement Award
Helmed by world-class director-choreographer Jamal Sims, When the Beat Drops immerses viewers in the growing culture of bucking—and if you’re unfamiliar with this hyper-athletic, wildly creative dance phenomenon, prepare to be electrified.
Atlanta has recently become an LGBTQ haven, but when Anthony was growing up there as a heavy-set, gay black kid with a love of dance, the Gate City was a harsh place. Nevertheless, talent and tenacity prevailed, and Anthony spearheaded a buck sensation, launching flash buck performances in clubs. Anthony’s crew, comprised largely of other gay African-American men, grew into a family and, eventually, a national movement incorporating fierce competitions and becoming a force of education and affirmation.
There are bumps on the road—like a small-town Alabama Christmas parade that outraged spectators—but the story Sims so deftly tracks is ultimately one of triumph, artistry and togetherness.
Director: Jamal Sims
Producer: Fenton Bailey, Randy Barbato, Jordan Finnegan
Production Company: World of Wonder Productions
Music: David Benjamin Steinberg
Cinematographer: John Orphan
Editor: Felipe Linz