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Streaming tip: "The Queen of Versailles"

Published January 17. 2013 4:00AM

The documentary one Washington Post blogger called "the best film on the Great Recession" just arrived as a Netflix streamer, and it is simply transfixing. Few of us get to peek into the lives of the 1 Percent, and this opens up the lives of David and Jackie Siegel as they are building the country'e largest private home, a 90,000-saquare-foot, 10-kitchen mansion in Orlando. It is not a pretty sight. The film starts just before the 2008 collapse, and billionaire Siegel, the CEO of Westgate Resorts, pretty much loses his shirt - but not his arrogance. The film spans three years of conspicuous consumption and deep denial in the family. The constants are the dog poop everywhere (I guess if your house is that big, you can't keep track) and Siegel's braggadocio (he claims to have rigged the 2000 Bush election all by himself). Director Lauren Greenfield (who won at Sundance for this) has amazing access to the beyond-creepy billionaire and his surgically uplifted wife who is so clueless that she becomes sympathetic. You won't be able to tear yourself away.


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