Queer Cinema(s)

João Pedro Rodrigues – Parabéns! AKA Happy Birthday! (1997)

Synopsis
The silent darkness of the bedroom is broken by a greetings message on the answering-machine. A sudden awakening for Chico on his thirtieth birthday. What a mess! Too late to meet his girlfriend, too late for the meeting at Expo ’98, and, even worse, an outsize hangover. But that’s not all. Lying next to him in bed is a young man with whom he has spent the night. He must now pick up the threads of his everyday life. Meanwhile his companion from the night before, with blue eyes and feline body, wanders around the house feeling both curious and amused, with the restless happiness of a twenty-year old with all the time in the world to spare. It is his hunger for life that, in an undeclared game, will transform what could otherwise have been a normal birthday morning for Chico… Read More »

Jack Deveau – The Boys from Riverside Drive (1977)

Synopsis/Background wrote:
“This early offering from master director Jack Deveau is decidedly tamer than most of his later work, and at just over an hour it’s also a shorter than his epics from the later part of the decade. There is an anonymous flavor to some of the sex, and a little kinky bondage enters the picture courtesy of some very loose rope midway through, but this is mostly a straightforward, romance-inflected film. Read More »

Albertina Carri – Las hijas del fuego (2018)

Three women meet by chance at the end of the world, in Argentinian Patagonia, and set out on a polyamorous journey, caught up in the search for new kinds of relationships, far from possession and pain. They become the Daughters of Fire, a band dedicated to helping those women who look for their own path to erotica. Read More »

Ferzan Ozpetek – Saturno contro AKA Saturn in Opposition (2007)

The sympathetically drawn, unthreatening gay characters here are practically an advertisement for this hot political topic. Abroad, the film’s biggest selling point, as with “Steam: The Turkish Bath” and “Ignorant Fairies,” is its relaxed, modern approach to gay characters and lifestyle, unusual for an Italian film. The mix of straight and gay stories, though, should broaden its appeal to a slightly wider niche. Read More »

Victor Saville – First a Girl (1935)

British musical star Jessie Matthews tops the bill in this song-studded comedy. Elizabeth (Matthews) is a delivery girl for a seamstress who is dispatched to drop off some costumes at a theatre where a noted female impersonator is about to open a new show. The star is suddenly stricken with laryngitis, and Elizabeth is drafted to take over in his place, posing as a man who dresses like a woman. Elizabeth is a hit, and with Victor (Sonnie Hale) as her manager, she sets forth on a concert tour of Europe; she continues to perform as a man and draws packed houses and enthusiastic reviews. However, a mysterious Princess (Anna Lee) and her significant other get the strange feeling there’s something odd about this new singing star, and they’re determined to find out what it is. First a Girl was adapted from the German film Viktor und Viktoria, which would be remade into the American musical comedy Victor/Victoria. Read More »

Ayse Toprak – Mr Gay Syria (2017)

Mr. Gay Syria follows two gay Syrian refugees who are trying to rebuild their lives. Husein is a barber in Istanbul, living a double life between his conservative family and his gay identity. Mahmoud is the founder of Syria’s LGBTI movement and is a refugee in Berlin. What brings them together is a dream: to participate in an international beauty contest as an escape from their trapped lives and an answer to their invisibility. Will the dream come true or will the refugee crisis and the harsh consequences of being gay in the Muslim world shatter it to pieces? Read More »

Lewis Allen – Desert Fury (1947)

Quote:
Fritzi Haller is a powerful casino owner in Chuckawalla, Nevada. Her daughter Paula (having quit school) returns at the same time as racketeer Eddie Bendix, who left under suspicion of murdering his wife. Paula and Eddie become involved; each for their own reasons, Fritzi, Paula’s old beau Tom, and Eddie’s pal Johnny try to break up the relationship. Then Eddie’s past catches up with him in an unexpected way. Read More »