Friday, June 17, 2016

Frameline40: Queer Film - Now More Than Ever

The LGBT Cannes is how many refer to the San Francisco International LGBTQ Film Festival and Frameline40 kicked off last night at the Castro Theater, and now more than ever, we need to see ourselves and our lives, and as we were reminded this week in Orlando, our deaths appropriately and widely represented on the big and little screens.

A number of films are of keen interest and should please my queer eye and bent ear.

Top of my must-see list is Andre Techine's latest work from France, "Being 17," playing June 21 at 7 pm at the Castro. He made one of my favorite queer films of the 1990s, "Wild Reeds," and he always makes intelligent narratives with terrific camerawork.

"Being 17" is described as a hormonal battle between two late-adolescent boys that promises an emotional reckoning for both of them.

Next up is the San Francisco-set tale "Pushing Dead" about a network of diverse folks struggling to stay alive and in the City, centered on an HIV positive gay man. In the cast is hometown actor and progressive activist Danny Glover, one more reason to catch this at the festival. Might we see Glover in the Castro on June 18 when the film screens at 6:30 pm?

I missed "The Joneses" when it played to packed houses and appreciative audiences at the recent San Francisco International Film Festival, and heard only positive buzz about it.

This documentary examines a trailer park in the Bible Belt of Mississippi and the owner, a trans woman, and her adult sons and other colorful people who make the park their home, struggling to get by and enjoy life. It unspools at the Roxie on June 18 at 1:30 pm.

Other docs on my list are more historical including "Flashback 1977: Frameline's Founding Year," an omnibus program of three shorts and Arthur J. Bressan, Jr.'s groundbreaking feature "Gay USA," all from that important year. Catch it on June 19 at 6:15 pm at the Roxie.

And then there's Marlon T. Riggs' revolutionary black queer representational in all its beauty and pain doc "Tongues Untied" from 1989, showcasing a cross-section of African-Americans in short tales, which was awarded the Best Documentary Prize at the Berlinale. It plays June 23 at 1:30 pm at the Castro.

What are you planning to see at Frameline40? More info on all programs, showtimes and ticket purchasing details, click here.

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