American Courtesan

I’ve seen a number of documentaries about this subject and have to say that what makes this one unique is that the filmmaker is someone that used to be a sex worker herself. This project dives into the world’s oldest profession through a series of interviews with women that are all still in the industry or have retired from it and moved on to other things. The interviews seem less like interviews and more like conversations between co-workers and friends which provides a nice, honest tone to the piece that would be hard to accomplish without the familiarity and camaraderie that only comes from people who are on the inside of something secret.

One of the things I found interesting about the material is how the emotional moments would ebb and flow based on the subjects being discussed at the time. Sometimes, the conversations were light-hearted while they would wax nostalgic about funny moments during their experiences. At other times, it becomes deep, intense and emotional as darker areas are explored such as the unfortunate rape experiences some of the women had. It even gets a little weird here and there when the discussion turns toward the kinks of the customers. Compelling all the way through.

Kristen DiAngelo is the primary force behind the piece conducting the interviews, sharing her own experiences as a sex worker as well as carrying out producer duties in addition to being the executive producer. Her passion for this project is evident with the depth of the questions she brings up as well as the emotional breaks she goes through during her own personal confessions.

The production is well done as the shot composition and footage has a nice look to it with a compliment of rich colors that accent the visual presentation.

Would definitely recommend giving this documentary a viewing.

reviewed by Sean McKnight