The Queen of Versailles

Wednesday, December 07 th, 2016 at 00:12 am 

The Queen of Versailles

JOY REVIEW

The Queen of Versailles shows that documentary filmmakers clearly have their own karma. This started out as an interview with a man and his wife, fourth wife, who built the biggest house in North America, and when it starts, she is sort of this — well, bimbo is probably too strong of a word, but she starts out as kind of a lost soul who says she married him for love. It turns out he is the king of timeshares and has a Las Vegas hotel and owns all these properties and he’s been through all these marriages and she has seven children with this guy, and one that’s adopted, and they live in a certainly vaguely palatial place to begin with, and then they decide to build Versailles. Over the course of the documentary, the recession occurs. You have enormous sympathy for the man, he seems a very likeable guy, and very little for her, although you do feel sorry for her. She’s a combination of a woman who is smart enough to get a degree in engineering but so lost that when he’s trying to figure out how to pay bills, she’s having laser surgery and Botox and fake breasts, and as she points out, as long as she didn’t have to take care of the kids, she thought it was great fun to have them. It’s a very sad documentary and shows that the recession, I suppose, ruined not only poor people, but rich people as well. It’s a fascinating documentary. Four stars.

Joy Meter