aGLIFF Previews and Schedule

Sept. 28-Oct. 6

aGLIFF Preview

Call Me Troy

D: Scott Bloom

"I live a fully gay lifestyle," preaches the Rev. Troy Perry. "I will not back away from who I am." Bloom's documentary of the founder of Metropolitan Community Church – the first denomination formed by an openly gay pastor that reaches out to the GLBT community – is a touching portrayal. After being forced out of his first Pentecostal religion, ordained priest Perry survived a suicide attempt before becoming a hero and leader. He originated the L.A. Gay Pride Parade; he marched on Washington, D.C., with Robin Tyler; and he stood up to the government in the face of the AIDS crisis. He officiated the first public same-sex marriage, and he continues to fight for the right for all to marry. Perry is a visionary of the tallest order, and Bloom's unflinching tale proves that it takes only one man to change the world. – Darcie Stevens

Friday, Sept. 28, 7pm, Arbor 1

Pro-Choice
"Pro-Choice"

Boy-O-Rama

D: various

This year's Boy-o-Rama shorts program comprises films that don't necessarily wrench the heart but, rather, tickle the funny bone. Opener "Inner Wang" features Wang Newton, a karaoke champion/superhero who comes head-to-head with an evil urban-housing developer. "Alonso's Deadline" is a quieter, more reflective story detailing the silent attraction between a melancholy, recently widowed neuroscience professor and the sexy young janitor who empties his trash. "Area X" similarly blends slight humor with slight tragedy in a New York City bar. After a mentally destructive day, bad pizza, and a painful bowel movement, college boy Paul is duped by a hustler, but it's the hustler who mistakenly lets his guard down. "Pro-Choice" is a short satire poking fun at the absurd idea of "choosing" one's sexual orientation. At four minutes, it's not a very enlightening satire and only brings to the table that "Indeed, it is absurd to think people choose to be gay." However, the short musical sequence "Homos, no mo! Don't want to be homos! Our homoness has to go-oh-oh!" is worth any triteness. "Eye on the Guy: Alan B. Stone & the Age of Beefcake," a not-so-short short at more than 45 minutes, closes out the program. A documentary and somewhat slide show of mouthwatering, bulging beefcakes, "Eye on the Guy" spotlights Canadian photographer Alan B. Stone, a pioneer of homoerotic photography during the Fifties and Sixties, before homosexual porn and before talk of homosexuals even existed in the mainstream current. – Sofia Resnick

Saturday, Sept. 29, 4:30pm, Arbor 2

Checkout
"Checkout"

Girl-O-Rama

D: various

The majority of the films in this year's Girl-o-Rama shorts program share a similar narrative thread, in which the individual comes to terms, not with being gay but with being herself. In "Local Grown Corn," director and narrator Melinda Chen walks the camera back through her childhood as the daughter of Chinese immigrants living in the Midwest and harvesting corn. For only eight minutes, Chen illustrates her metaphor effectively. "Backstroke" recounts the tragic story of Julie (Niki Nielsen), who, after finally consummating her relationship with her longtime crush, Rome (Amee Walden), witnesses Rome's car accident, presumes her dead, breaks down, and ends up in a psych ward. One month later, after amnesia befalls her, Rome appears in the same psych ward, unaware of her feelings for Julie. Icelandic short "Family Reunion," tells a story of a woman comfortable in her homosexual relationship in New York City and desperately afraid to reveal herself among her conservative Icelandic family. "Hot Air Balloon" follows the theme of individual acceptance but in a more expressive, experimentally playful manner, perfectly complemented by the musical stylings of Paris' the Gotan Project. Twisting the program in different, humorous direction, "Checkout" and "Members Only" highlight the absurdity that comes with the emphasis of labels, even from the gay community. And because some things never change, "I Knew Him" is a two-minute public-service-announcement-style reminder that both women and gay men get raped by men they know. – Sofia Resnick

Saturday, Sept. 29, 4:45pm, Arbor 1

aGLIFF Preview

The Bubble (Ha Buah)

D: Eytan Fox; with Ohad Knoller, Yousef "Joe" Sweid, Daniela Virtzer, Alon Friedman, Zohar Liba, Tzion Baruch

In 1852, a wise Prussian socialist with a great beard wrote, "History weighs on the mind of the living like a nightmare." Seventy years later, an equally wise Irish sensualist with a meager mustache took the sentiment one step further: "History is a nightmare from which I am trying to awake," he wrote. For wise men everywhere, the prescription for free living has always been simple: Wake up, wake up, wake up! Unfortunately, when you're a homosexual Arab living in occupied Palestine, waking up may be an unaffordable luxury. In Fox's excellent new comedy-drama, Ashraf (Sweid) tries to shake off history's shackles by falling in love with an Israeli Army reservist named Noam (Knoller) and living the bohemian lifestyle with him and his friends in liberal Tel Aviv, only to find that even the most free-spirited soul can get sucked under by a 2,000-year-old revenge tragedy. The Bubble, which was feted at this year's Berlin International Film Festival, is a world-weary yet stubbornly optimistic tribute to liberation through individuality. – Josh Rosenblatt

Saturday, Sept. 29, 6:45pm, Arbor 2

aGLIFF Preview

DarkBlueAlmostBlack

D: Daniel Sánchez Arévalo; with Quim Gutiérrez, Marta Etura, Antonio de la Torre, Héctor Colomé, Raúl Arévalo, Eva Pallarés

First-time director and longtime screenwriter Sánchez Arévalo nods to a young Pedro Almodóvar in this honest drama of searching for identity. Jorge (Gutiérrez) is a young janitor forced into a life of servitude by his father while caring for the now-invalid patriarch on the outskirts of Madrid. His brother, Antonio (de la Torre), finds love in prison but can't impregnate his desperate girlfriend-behind-bars. Jorge's best friend, Israel (Raúl Arévalo), questions his own sexuality, but Jorge questions nothing. Layered with simple storylines echoing real-life sentiment, DarkBlueAlmostBlack follows Jorge from obligation to revelation without judgment. Sánchez Arévalo's subdued colors and candid performances magnify the lifelong search for self, whether professional, personal, or both. Jorge's search for a career doubles as escape route, and his acceptance of a family's hefty requests doubles as guilt. While this might not be a typical family, their story shines with truth. – Darcie Stevens

Saturday, Sept. 29, 7pm, Arbor 1

aGLIFF Preview

Spider Lilies (Ci qing)

D: Zero Chou; with Isabella Leong and Rainie Yang

aGLIFF wouldn't be complete without an East Asian drama about the meant-to-be yet impossible love between two attractive women. Chou's bewitching babes are a lonely webcam stripper with a proclivity toward neon-green wigs and virtual companionship and a reclusive tattoo artist whose guilt-ridden soul prevents her from accepting happiness and pleasure. Much of the film's conflict and symbolism revolve around a tattoo of spider lilies: flowers that, according to legend, grow "on both sides of the path to hell" and are permeated with poison "that makes one lose consciousness and reality." Though the film sometimes overindulges itself in misery, Chou's deft direction is evidenced by Leong's and Yang's performances and by the film's beautifully realized scenes, shot in Taiwan. – Sofia Resnick

Saturday, Sept. 29, 9:15pm, Arbor 2

aGLIFF Preview

We're All Angels

D: Robert Nunez

Jason and deMarco have dealt with conflict all their lives. Being gay, Christian, and a struggling singer-songwriter duo will do that. They first had to deal with their inner conflicts in accepting their own homosexuality, then their parents' reactions, and now the not-so-welcoming reaction of the Christian music world. We're All Angels follows Jason and deMarco as they prepare their newest CD, laying down tracks in the studio, doing photo shoots, radio promotion, and performing across the country at any church that'll have them. While they strive to achieve a successful musical career, their message of hope and acceptance to young gay Christian teenagers is nothing less than life-saving. The teenage suicide rate among this demographic is horribly high, and Jason and deMarco are positive role models for kids struggling with their conflicting sexuality/spirituality. As their producer's mother says, "It must break God's heart the things we do in the name of religion." Amen. – Mark Fagan

Sunday, Sept. 30, noon, Arbor 1

aGLIFF Preview

BORN AGAIN

D: Markie Hancock

The rift (eternal or earthbound) between the evangelical Christian movement and homosexuality is laid bare by director Hancock in this painfully personal examination of her own life growing up in just such a soon-to-be divided household in Altoona, Pa. Indoctrinated into a life that consisted of Jesus first, family second, and real life hardly at all, Hancock uses some remarkable tropes to explore the basic schism between her parents and her own emerging sexuality, including diary entries from her childhood. One of the most disturbing scenes finds Hancock begging God to remove a proto-sapphic crush on a college friend even as the young filmmaker sneaks off to smoke her first Camel under the bleachers, an act that terrifies her almost as much as the strange love she's increasingly feeling. "What will happen if I move to the dark side?" she asks. Emotionally and spiritually fraught, Born Again provides answers to its own pointed questions about Evangelicals, for the most part ones that they wouldn't want to hear. – Marc Savlov

Sunday, Sept. 30, 12:15pm, Arbor 2

aGLIFF Preview

Trantasia

D: Jeremy Stanford

Watching Trantasia is like watching a Miss America special with behind-the-scenes footage of the girls' pageant preparation – except with a lot more glitter, make-up, silicon, and gender issues. The documentary gives insight into the lives of the girls competing for the World's Most Beautiful Transsexual title. The contestants are both pre- and post-op transsexuals who have found it more comfortable to live as females: Some were caught putting on their mothers' make-up as children; others got in trouble for wearing panty hose to the park. "I would go to the wig store, buy a wig, and go hide out somewhere and be a girl," says Mimi. Trantasia is told through the eyes of the contestants: Mimi, Tiara, Erica, Cassandra, Maria, Dorae, et al. They explain their gender transformation more like taking on a role and being a different character or trying to overcome the adversity in their lives. "I wanted to be closer to fame," Tiara explains. "And this was my way out of the projects." – Kristine Tofte

Friday, Oct. 5, 2pm, Arbor 2

aGLIFF Preview

Anger Me

D: Elio Gelmini

Anger Me is a brief and intimate documentary portrait of experimental filmmaker Kenneth Anger. Before a collage of his various avant-garde, homoerotic film clips – among them black-and-white 16mm images of discreetly toned sailors with red and white fluid surging from their penises – Anger narrates his life. A self-described poetic black sheep, Anger divorced himself from the Hollywood scene in the Forties and influenced many artists and filmmakers immersed in the underground scene of the Sixties and Seventies. Anger discusses his passion for the experimental and the occult and offers some historical perspective to a cinematic period rarely discussed in modern forums other than independent film festivals and film schools birthing the era's next perverted cinematic poetic genius.

Anger Me is preceded by local filmmaker Mocha Jean Herrup's documentary short "Today I Become a Man," the story of a man who tries to convince those who matter that he's a "real" drag king. – Sofia Resnick

Friday, Oct. 5, 2:15pm, Arbor 1

aGLIFF Preview

Glue

D: Alexis Dos Santos; with Nahuel Pérez Biscayart, Inés Efron, Nahuel Viale, Verónica Llinás, Héctor Díaz, Florencia Braier

It's comforting to know that even in Patagon­ia being a teenager is a drag. Fifteen-year-old Lucas (Biscayart) has all the symptoms of pernicious adolescence: raging hormones, family dysfunction, personal insecurity, and an unhealthy obsession with the Violent Femmes. Luckily, he's also got Nacho (Viale), his best friend and wrestling companion, with whom he indulges the whims of his growing sexual ambiguity and seeks for some small way out of the empty despair of southern Argentina's flatlands – whether by bicycle, bus, or sniffable adhesives. Dos Santos' film may be short on story, but it's long on atmosphere, attitude, and sympathy for its disaffected boy-philos-opher, who, like all good teenagers, will try anything – drugs, sex, music, even metaphysics – to get a small taste of freedom. – Josh Rosenblatt

Saturday, Oct. 6, 6:15pm, Arbor 2

aGLIFF Preview

Screening Schedule

Friday, Sept. 28

7pm: Call Me Troy


Saturday, Sept. 29

Arbor 1

12:15pm: Boy I Am

2:30pm: Through Thick and Thin

4:45pm: Girl-o-Rama (Shorts)

7pm: DarkBlueAlmostBlack

9:30pm: East Side Story

Arbor 2

Noon: Lesbian Pulp-o-Rama Goes to Sweden; "Aya de Leon"

2:15pm: Trans Journeys (Shorts)

4:30pm: Boy-o-Rama (Shorts)

6:45pm: The Bubble

9:15pm: Spider Lilies


Sunday, Sept. 30

Arbor 1

Noon We're All Angels

2pm: Shelter Me

4:30pm: The Man of My Life

7pm: Eternal Summer

9:15pm: Boy's Love

Arbor 2

12:15pm: Born Again

2:15pm: Inlaws & Outlaws

5:15pm: The Way We Write

7:15pm: Brother to Brother

9:30pm: Holding Trevor


Monday, Oct. 1

Arbor 1

5:15pm: Expanamusicals! (Shorts)

7:30pm: Tell

9:45pm: The Best of Lezsploitation and This Kiss

Arbor 2

5pm: Women and Children

7:15pm: Itty Bitty Titty Committee

9:30pm: Lulu Gets a Facelift and "Luchando"


Tuesday, Oct. 2

Arbor 1

6pm: Poison

8:30pm: Saving Marriage

Arbor 2

6:15pm: "It Wasn't Love" and "Flat Is Beautiful"

8:45pm: "Anyone and Everyone" and Hineini: Coming Out in a Jewish High School


Wednesday, Oct. 3

Arbor 1

5:15pm: Gals (Shorts)

7:30pm: Nina's Heavenly Delights

Arbor 2

5pm: While You Are Here and "Last Full Show"

7:15pm: Semper Fi: One Marine's Journey, "Queerspiracy," and "Out Running: Stories From the Campaign Trail"


Thursday, Oct. 4

Arbor 1

2pm: Student OUTreach – Sadie Benning ("Flat Is Beautiful")

5pm: The Year of Paper

7:30pm: Art Night – Black White + Gray and "Smalltown Boy"

Arbor 2

2:15pm: Student OUTreach – Todd Haynes (Poison)

5:15pm: Drag: Not Just Men in Heels

7:15pm: Art Night – A Walk Into the Sea: Danny Williams and the Warhol Factory, "SCARRED," and "Dirty Love"

9:15pm: Guys (Shorts)


Friday, Oct. 5

Arbor 1

12:15pm: "Gay Pioneers" and Emile Norman: By His Own Design

2:15pm: Anger Me and "Today I Become a Man"

4:15pm: Trained in the Ways of Men

7pm: The Witnesses

9:30pm: My Super 8 Season

Arbor 2

Noon: How Do I Look

2pm: Trantasia

4:30pm: OUTside Communities (Shorts)

7:15pm: The Picture of Dorian Gray

9:15pm: Outing Riley


Saturday, Oct. 6

Arbor 1

Noon: My Gay Movie (Shorts)

2pm: Another Woman

4:15pm: Oz Shorts

6:30pm: Poltergay

8:45pm: Kate Clinton's 25th Anniversary Tour

Arbor 2

2:15pm: Divided We Stand

4:30pm: "Odd People Out"

6:15pm: Glue

8:30pm: Laughing Matters ... the Men

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