MAMA tells the story of a Rotterdam self-chosen family. At the head of the family, we find mother and dragqueen Ma’MaQueen. Together with her three cats, she creates a safe haven for her six drag children. Not everyone in the house can count on understanding from their biological families. All members are dealing with personal issues: being rejected by their family, a negative self-image or not feeling seen. The turbulent search for identity and acceptance within a society that’s constantly screaming that you don’t belong is no easy task. Drag lets them forget all that, and the shortcomings of their daily lives momentarily vanish. The sometimes harsh reality and fantasy overlap one another daily, but they feel safe and seen under mama’s wing. With one another, they find support, security and a home where fantasy becomes a reality. Above all, they want to celebrate each other.

About the director:

Esmée van Loon (1996) is a documentary director and researcher from Rotterdam. She focuses on stories that often take place around socially relevant themes close to herself. In 2016, during her studies at Willem de Kooning Acadamy, she made her first short documentary ‘Ma’MaQueen’, which took home the ‘best film’ award at the Rotterdam Open Doek festival and got picked up by 2DOC. She graduated from the academy in 2018 with her personal documentary ‘Dubbel Geluk’ (‘Double Luck’), which was broadcast by HUMAN/NPO2. Her documentaries have been screened at several national and international festivals, including the IFFR, ShortCutz and Sheffield DocFest.

Check out the trailer here: