Halfway through her debut presentation, an aspiring young drag performer (Héctor Medina) is suckerpunched by a member of the audience, who turns out to be the recently sprung father (Jorge Perugorría) he never knew. From here, director Paddy Breathnach and screenwriter Mark O’Halloran call into play Hollywood’s tested and proven formula for reconciliation, shaking cobwebs off the strings that, once tugged, gradually pull father and son together. Shot on location in Havana, the creative duo reveal a greater understanding of the etched-in-squalor city than they do the stock characters they create to populate it. As expected, the hard edge eventually turns to mush. Had the filmmakers slathered as much mascara on their characters’ eyelids as they did stoking the plot with sentiment, the cast would have spent the last third of the picture bumping into things. Worth seeing if only for the superb underplaying by Luis Alberto Garcia as club owner Mama. In Spanish with English subtitles. (2015) — Scott Marks
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