Life Lessons From The Birdcage


“The Birdcage” from 1996, is a humorous and heartfelt movie that makes me want to dance in my seat. Albert Goldman, played by Nathan Lane, is “Starina” the star of the show at his gay nightclub. He makes me smile because he is dramatic and fierce. It is almost as if his attitude would claw your face like a cat and purr with sass. It makes me laugh because I feel like I would do the same thing with people when I feel like a brat. Furthermore, the dedication Albert has for his family is heartwarming and funny. I have seen this movie over 100 times (exaggerating…not really) and know all the lines because it is that good. When I am feeling some mood, I will say a line from Albert’s scenes to express how I am feeling.

The gay nightclub “The Birdcage” is the surrounding turning point because when Armond Goldman’s (Robin Williams) son, Val (Dan Futterman), comes home and drops a little surprise that he’s engaged to the Senators Keeley’s daughter, Barbara. Val wanted his fathers, Albert and Armond, to act straight for his fiancé’s family. Val wanted a picture perfect family so that his future mother and father in-law would find him accepting to marry their daughter. Val irritated me because you cannot and shouldn’t change your family no matter how gay, bisexual, straight, transgender, and etc., they are. Instead of being proud of his upbringing, he wanted his family to change and act different to please his fiancés father, the Senator. Senator or not eventually people will always find out the truth about who you are because a personality is hard to hide.

Albert practiced being “straight” and be more “manly” but failed miserably. Unfortunately, masculinity is forced upon men in the gay community to be something some may not feel comfortable with because that is not who they are. Albert tried desperately to become “one of the guys” but instead had something else up his sleeve.

Albert then dressed up as a woman portraying Val’s mother and was immediately adored. Which rightfully so because Albert is so sweet and charming he can win over anyone, really. Things fell apart and the truth was revealed. Senator Keeley and his wife were face to face with the lie that unraveled before them.

If Albert and Armond were my parents I would not want them to change for the world because they are the ones who raised me. Val went to the extreme to impress the Keeley family just because his soon to be father in-law is a senator. I feel like everyone should watch this movie because it shows the love Albert has for his family. Also, the dedication and pride Albert has for himself goes above and beyond. No matter what, Albert is “Starina” is loved and adored by his audience. However, nothing can beat the love Albert has for his son Val and husband Armond. This will always be a classic because it has comedy, humor, and cherish able moments throughout the movie.

I recommend this movie, to revisit how wonderful it is, especially having Robin Williams as one of the main actors. Williams can act any part to a movie and make it seem as if he lived that lifestyle from “The Birdcage” his whole life. Revisiting, “The Birdcage” is for those who may feel lost with their own identity should see this movie.

Albert is fierce, sassy, and funny. After having my eyes glued to the television screen, I would always feel sassy, yet confident with myself even though I am a straight woman. Throughout the movie, Albert was always confident with himself even though he practiced being straight. He didn’t let that stop him from being who or what he wanted to be. Although Armond is more of the “manly” one in the relationship, he too has a sensitive side to him. Armond and Albert have dedication when it comes to their family and that is what I love about the movie the most. People should never judge a book by its cover because you will be amazed on how funny and sweet it is.