Stylish and supernaturally creepy, JADE OF DEATH, is making its public premiere at the Mardi Gras Film Festival on February 23rd. Lucky me, I had a chance to see the series of 6 x 10 minute shows before it opens as a 60 minute offering. And luckier still had the chance to speak with Erin Good (writer / director) and Taylor Litton-Strain (producer) of the show. Continue reading JADE OF DEATH: A STYLISH SUPERNATURAL MYSTERY
SATURDAY CHURCH is a trans story yes. But much much more. It is transporting, transcendent and transformative, with themes of belonging and being that reach well beyond the coming out. The film is essentially a drama, but the interspersed songs and dancing, a bit like LA LA LAND, come smoothly together to inform, touch and influence hearts and minds. Continue reading SATURDAY CHURCH: MGFF 2018
Light piano music leads us from hands slowly massaging dough, through a cityscape, into a Torten Laden, Café Krendenz on a busy street in Berlin. THE CAKEMAKER, playing as part of Queer Screen’s Mardi Gras Film Festival, is a profound and impactful film which has been crafted with loving hands. Continue reading THE CAKEMAKER: MGFF 2018
Queer Screen’s 25th Mardi Gras Film Festival is 15 February – 1 March 2018 and the full program has just been announced.
To help you decide from the huge array of films on offer look out for a series of reviews from The Sydney Arts Guide.
QUEER SCREEN’S MARDI GRAS FILM FESTIVAL 2018 is a celebration of LGBTIQ creativity and an homage to history as Queer Screen brings the best and most diverse LGBTIQ content to the big screen.
Announcing the first 10 ‘teaser’ films.
MGFF18 puts the spotlight on Australia’s established and up and coming filmmakers with a retrospective of MY QUEER CAREER – Australia’s largest competition for LGBTIQ short films, hosted each Mardi Gras Film Festival by Queer Screen. For more than two decades, MY QUEER CAREER has unearthed the latest and greatest Aussie queer filmmakers.
Looking towards the future, the festival presents JADE OF DEATH, a supernatural thriller which was recently awarded Best Drama Series by the International Academy of Web Television. Made with assistance from the Queer Screen Completion Fund, the cast includes rising young star Bernie Van Tiel.
Festival director Lisa Rose said: “Queer Screen’s values – diversity, creativity, inspiration, inclusiveness and pride – have guided us through the last 25 years of producing film festivals for LGBTIQ communities and current circumstances mean they are now more valid than ever. We are delighted to be presenting our silver jubilee festival in what we hope will be the year when same sex marriage becomes law.”
With more than a few parallels to Australia, THE 34TH recounts Ireland’s campaign for marriage equality, which culminated in the country’s historic 2015 referendum.
The festival will also pay homage to Mardi Gras with a screening of a fully restored version of the renown documentary WITCHES AND FAGGOTS, DYKES AND POOFTERS about the 78ers, the group of protesters whose march for equality morphed into one of the biggest gay and lesbian parades in the world. Gayle Lake, senior film curator at the National Film and Sound Archive, said: “We are proud to digitally preserve and restore . Our NFSA Restores program ensures that important films such as this are preserved at the highest standards, making them available to cinema audiences once again.”
As always, MGFF18 will showcase the most impressive films from around the world.
SIGNATURE MOVE is the most played lesbian film on the LGBT festival circuit this year. A multicultural rom-com, it’s about Zaynab, a Pakistani-American lawyer whose mother wants nothing more than for her daughter to find a husband and experience the love and happiness she once had. But Zaynab has other ideas and escapes to the world of Mexican lucha libre women’s wrestling instead!
The girls wrestling with their feelings in SIGNATURE MOVE are joined by a young man walking a fine line between machismo and homoeroticism in BEACH RATS, our Sundance-award winning gay coming of age pick for the boys. Frankie, who has a new girlfriend, is torn between real world hyper-masculinity and the hidden homoeroticism of flirting with older men online in this moody, angsty teen drama, set during a sultry summer.
THEY, a non-binary/trans arthouse title from Cannes, tells of 14-year- old J, who has been on hormone blockers to delay puberty while they explore their gender identity, and now must finally decide if they want to transition. It’s a stunning meditation on the nature of gender, cultural identity, and the importance of family, crafted by Iranian director Anahita Ghazvinizadeh and executive producer Jane Campion.
French feel-good romp KISS ME! brings all the charm as Oceane, who has had her fair share of broken hearts, meets Cecile and goes to any lengths to get the girl and keep her.
Meanwhile BODY ELECTRIC , a sexy slice of life narrative from Brazil, brings the raunchiness. It takes an intimate look at the lives of a racially and sexually diverse group of friends as they take to the streets of Sao Paulo with carefree (dare we say “gay”?) abandon.
SATURDAY CHURCH introduces us to Ulysses, who is expected to become “man of the house” after his father’s death, but clad in red high heel pumps, he finds himself pulled in another direction, specifically, towards a weekly meetup of gay and trans youth. Based on a real-life program in NYC’s West Village, SATURDAY CHURCH is a musical drama about finding acceptance and understanding and, unashamedly, being who you are.
The full festival program will be launched on 10 January, 2018.
Tickets for the first 10 films are on sale now including flexi passes to 5 or 10 films. Queer Screen members receive discounted tickets and priority entry to movies. To become a member or to book tickets call (02) 9280 1533 or visit: http://queerscreen.org.au
Diversity within the LGBTIQ community? Search no further than the 24th Mardi Gras Film Festival program. Curated by Queer Screen, the range of topics and genres is truly impressive.
At the season launch last night, Queer Screen’s President Lisa Rose spoke about their mission to provide a “celebration of queer storytelling on screen”. Inclusive, respectful stories full of creativity, inspiration and pride.
There are big big films and there are small big films and everything in between. Like MOONLIGHT which has just been nominated in several categories including Best Picture for the 2017 Oscars. There is singalong, a smellovison 3 D FINDING DORY for the rainbow family and even mystery movie plus more superb international and home-grown documentaries, dramas, romances etc than you can poke a glitter wand at.
Then there are the shorts. Gay, Lesbian, Transgender and Asia/Pacific shorts all have showings and if this doesn’t suit there is even an evening of Mixed Shorts. Continue reading MARDI GRAS FILM FESTIVAL LAUNCH
THE PASS is a tough watch yet a terrific choice for the Queer Screen’s 24th Mardi Gras Film Festival.
“Our guiding vision for this year to tell as many queer stories as possible through the most diverse range of characters, stories and genres yet” says Festival Director Paul Struthers as he announced the 10 ‘teaser’ films this week. And if these ten are any indication it will be an exciting season. The Festival will allow Sydney audiences to see, not only the most impressive films from the LGBTIQ film circuit, but many award-winners from Berlin, Toronto and other A-list film festivals. Continue reading THE PASS
Don’t think that you need to be a dance enthusiast, film history buff or Queer culture follower to enjoy FEELINGS ARE FACTS : THE LIFE OF YVONNE RAINER. This is a film that allows a concentration on the subject not the medium. There is nothing tricky here. It’s just traditional documentary storytelling. It’s mostly linear: has talking heads and stills and recreated performances.
The brilliance choice of documentary form is as inspired as the work of this brilliantly non-traditional artist. The form makes itself irrelevant so that the work on display is on display.
And the work is mesmerising and challenging. Continue reading FEELINGS ARE FACTS : THE LIFE OF YVONNE RAINER