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The Queen of Versailles

(DVD - 2012)
Average Rating: 3 stars out of 5.
The Queen of Versailles
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The Queen of Versailles is a character-driven documentary about a billionaire family and their financial challenges in the wake of the economic crisis. The film follows two unique characters, whose rags-to-riches-to-rags success stories reveal the innate virtues and flaws of the American Dream.

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Feb 27, 2015
  • daysleeper236 rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

A fascinating documentary about the effects of jaw-dropping excess, entitlement and greed. Highly recommended.

Sep 26, 2014
  • VRMurphy rated this: 3.5 stars out of 5.

Where to start, in talking about this film? Technically, I think it's quite good, and thematically, it does give quite the glimpse at how some people live. The negative, for me, is the choice of the filmmakers not to challenge or present independent analysis of the subjects' claims; I would have been interested to see interviews with past household staff (I don't blame the ones that were in the film for being circumspect in their comments), and someone from Forbes or the WSJ on the actual state of the family business. That being said, the focus of the film is not the time-share industry. I found it to be the way that excess consumption is viewed differently when it's being done by the wealthy, than by the rest of society. It is only the price level of belongings, and the sheer volume of space available to them, that separates this family from the ones featured on "Hoarders". Like many previous reviewers, I was saddened to see the neglect of animals and the excess of belongings - the bicycles being a very good example. The whole family seems to live impulse by impulse, which is why forgotten pets die, played-with pets aren't house-trained, and even when financial constraints are placed on shopping, the same pattern of overbuying continues, albeit at discount retailers instead of luxury shops. And yeesh, even in the cash-rolling-in years, they didn't put any money away for their childrens' education, because they thought they would always be so rich that the next generation wouldn't have to go to college? Nice comment about the parents' values of school for social, personal, and intellectual development. Good film, sad family. It'd be interesting to see a follow-up every 7 years or so, like Granada's 7-up series, to see what happens to those poor children.

PJJ
May 25, 2014
  • PJJ rated this: 1.5 stars out of 5.

In a word, pathetic. You don't know whether to feel sorry for them or say good for them. Maybe it's somewhere in between. The father is old school, work ethic delusional. I understand fighting for what is yours, what you have built, but come on. Things are falling down around them, or so it seems or maybe they are not as bad off as they present themselves to be. Nothing seems to make the father happy. Initially it looks like it's because he is stressed with keeping the time share business going, but when you look deeper, if everything had panned out successfully, he would still be a dull ,detached piece of cardboard, not relating to his family, There are a bunch of kids, that just get stuff because they want it. There is no sense of caring for anything, putting things away, or accountability, I believe this is the greatest tragedy of both the mother and father raising these children. What a void, what space cadets for parents. The kids have 'things' for no apparent real desire other than it's something that passed their brains and lips and they got it. How sad is that? Jackie is as fake as the the breast implants she flaunts in the camera every chance she gets with that strange posture. Talk about someone forgetting her roots? She could have used the limitations of her upbringing, to pass on to her children, teaching them basic about valuing life, but instead she mothered them into a make believe life of false existence because it so called looked and sounded good. Another void to add to the cloud like existence of the a family. Add the other factors: the servants who abandoned their own children and families to take care the vapor family is a travesty. And to top it off, picking up dog droppings, stale food, garbage and disarray all over the place had to be the most disgusting job of a lifetime. Certainly for an ungrateful family of empty, compassionless un-empathetic people. They were pigs. It's good that they didn't get the new house, it would have just been more space to be a slob in. Aside from the stock market and housing crash of 2008, this family would have imploded because of the pretentious lifestyle they lived. It was like looking at trailer park trash with clothes on. If this financial demise didn't happen things would have been far worse than where this family eventually ended up. View at your own risk and mental assault!

Apr 23, 2014
  • ashleysears rated this: 0.5 stars out of 5.

I thought the case said this wasn't based on real life, that it was a spoof type of movie. Either way I could only watch it for 20 minutes then I had to turn it off. Pass on this one unless your super fans of these people.

Jan 28, 2014
  • franzkafka rated this: 0.5 stars out of 5.

He helped George Dubya steal the presidency using "non legal"means. They're friends with donald Trump and the thing that lives on top of his head. It evokes no sympathy but she really deserves a facial and all over the obvious enhancements. Boo, Yah! Oh, yea and this is an argument in favour of global warming and rising oceans. In a few years, I hope, most of Florida will be underwater. Good for the Manatees. Huzzah!
I noticed that sdaleo's review below gave 5 stars! Click on that person's completed shelves he/she/it gives 5 stars to everything they've ever borrowed.

Jan 13, 2014
  • badgirls rated this: 0.5 stars out of 5.

Oh the poor super rich! Just imagine you might not be able to complete your 90,000 square foot home/palace aka "Versailles" 'cause the "bad banks" wouldn't give you anymore money? Sometimes you have to wonder why some films/docs receive great reviews etc.? "The Queen of Versailles" is one of these films. Yes it might be technically very good but it concerns a disgustingly rich couple Jackie and David Siegel. David made all his money by starting and building a time share company called Westgate. This company "preys" on the lower income and signs them up for time shares using very high pressure sales. Westgate has been called "the worst thieves in Las Vegas". Too say this couple is creepy is putting it mildly. If you end up watching best to have a shower afterwards.

Sep 21, 2013
  • real_thing rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

add this to the wall street disaster. recommend the documentary enron, lots of suiccids in it

Jul 30, 2013
  • rslade rated this: 0.5 stars out of 5.

Completely and utterly pointless documentary about stupid rich people.

May 27, 2013
  • blueskies100 rated this: 2 stars out of 5.

It is very diificult to feel any sort of empathy for these people. Google Westgate timeshares and then try to have any empathy for them. The ultra wealthy get tax breaks and other perks the working people can only dream of. Even bankruptcy would not mean they would lose their only home to live in.
The DVD had finger prints all over it. Really people, do you need to touch the DVD all over before you play it?

Apr 02, 2013
  • britprincess1 rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

For those who saw this on the shelf, it has an appearance of something akin to the Real Housewives of wherever, but don't be deceived -- that is miles away from the actual content. And thank heavens for that. THE QUEEN OF VERSAILLES is well crafted and spans several recent years, comparing in a metaphor the regal French lavishness that fell (re: Marie-Antoinette, the Palace of Versailles, the French Revolution, the guillotine, etc.) to our modern economically depressed times. When the recession hit, everyone was affected; the billionaire time-share resort owner David Siegel, his rags-to-riches beauty queen wife Jackie, and their eight children (seven biological children, and one they "inherited") are no exception. The documentary starts with the Siegels building an American replica of the Palace of Versailles, a beautiful, spacious, record-breakingly large home tailored to their very specific francophilic tastes. However, the market crashes and things don't go as planned. The disintegration of their fortune isn't kept solely at the financial aspects of their life, though, as their business lives seep into their personal and family lives. We find out who people really are when the pennies are precious and the dollars scarce. You may be surprised at what the Siegels will and won't sacrifice: money, business, pride, family, and love. I highly recommend this story to anyone who has ever reevaluated what really matters in life.

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Apr 02, 2013
  • britprincess1 rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

britprincess1 thinks this title is suitable for 11 years and over

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