Capsule reviews

El Último Verando de la Boyita (The Last Summer of the Boyita)

D: Julia Solomonoff; with Guadalupe Alonso, Nicolás Treise, María Clara Merendino.

Silences speak volumes amidst the peals of adolescent laughter in Argentine filmmaker Solomonoff's sun-drenched reverie of a summer quite unlike any other. It's 1980 and young Jorgelina (Alonso, mixing precocity with a decidedly unsaccharine sweetness) is dealing with the onset of puberty and all that that entails. With her home life in a state of marital upheaval, Jorgelina's physician father takes her and her 12-year-old sister, Luciana, to the drowsy seaside for the summer. There, camped in a ratty caravan dubbed "la boyita," Jorgelina meets and befriends the oddly androgynous Mario (Treise), a local boy with issues of his own. Executive-produced by Pedro Almódovar, this is both a eulogy for preadolescent innocence and a singularly adult exploration of emerging sexuality in all its forms. – Marc Savlov

Wednesday, Sept. 8, 6:45pm

Gen Silent

D: Stu Maddux.

Growing old requires a certain amount of lifestyle adjustments, but for GLBT seniors, growing old carries the dreaded possibility of a return trip to the closet – just to get proper health care. In Gen Silent, Stu Maddux introduces us to half a dozen Boston residents at the crossroads of aging in a heterosexual world: Krysanne, a transgender woman in the throes of a health crisis; Lawrence, whose partner, Alexandre, is in a nursing home; Mel, a cancer survivor grieving the death of his other half, Walter; and Sheri and Lois, trailblazing activists approaching their 45th year as a couple. We also meet an innovative group of providers who are breaking the mold of an industry designed for straight people. This eye-opening film should be required viewing for health care providers at every level. Side effects may include a tear in the eye and a lump in the throat. – Amy Smith

Friday, Sept. 10, 12:45pm

Sons of Tennessee Williams

D: Tim Wolff.

Did you know about the gay Mardi Gras krewe ball busted up by the cops in New Orleans and that it preceded the infamous Stonewall Riots by a decade? Oppression, police raids, and gay bashings were the mothers of these krewes' invention. The courageous queens of this era laid the foundation on what would become the gay rights makeover ... errrr, movement. Charming interviews with men decades deep in the scene and fascinating historical footage offer a peacock-feathered peek into the evolution – from the debutramps of the first Krewe of Yuga, through AIDS and Katrina, to the steel magnolias of the 40th anniversary ball of today's Krewe of Armenius – into this once hidden history. (Wolff will be the guest of the Centerpiece party, along with a number of the film's subjects, dressed in full regalia.) – Kate X Messer

Saturday, Sept. 11, 4:30pm

The Secret Diaries of Miss Anne Lister

D: James Kent; with Maxine Peake, Anna Madeley, Gemma Jones.
<i>The Secret Diaries of Miss Anne Lister </i>
The Secret Diaries of Miss Anne Lister

The encrypted diaries of this real-life Yorkshire gentlewoman – totaling some 4 million words – were so secret they were only decoded in the 1990s, a century and a half after Lister's death, and they were an eyeful, intimately detailing Lister's preference for the fairer sex. The Secret Diaries of Miss Anne Lister skillfully evokes the era and the delicate and coded politesse required to initiate contact – "Do you like Byron?" Lister (Peake) purrs to a potential paramour. This BBC costume drama puts a heavy emphasis on the uncostuming of its characters – Lister had a fiery, years-long relationship with a married woman – and while the narrative could be stronger, it's still a nice change to see a boy-free bodice ripper. The Real Anne Lister, a 60-minute documentary, screens Saturday at noon. – Kimberley Jones

Friday, Sept. 10, 7:30pm

Contracorriente (Undertow)

D: Javier Fuentes-León; with Manolo Cardona, Cristian Mercado, Tatiana Astengo.

In the tiny seaside Peruvian town of this movie, homosexuality remains the love that dare not speak its name. Santiago (Cardono) is a painter (and outsider) who returns to this fishing community of his youth, where he falls into a loving, sexual relationship with Miguel (Mercado), a man who also loves his pregnant wife and their baby that's on the way. Though it's clear that Miguel delights in the secret hours he spends with Santiago, he will not own up to his feelings in public. Whether Miguel is truly bisexual or simply closeted is never fully explored. Then the sea intervenes to cast a spell of magical realism into the mix. When the needs of a ghost whose soul can't rest become a driving force, an odd merger of Catholicism, traditional culture, and newfound tolerance encompasses the community. – Marjorie Baumgarten

Friday, Sept. 10, 12:30pm

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aGLIFF, Austin Gay and Lesbian Film Festival, El Último Verando de la Boyita, The Last Summer of the Boyita, Julia Solomonoff, Gen Silent, Stu Maddux, Sons of Tennessee Williams, Tim Wolff, Krewe of Yuga, Krewe of Armenius, The Secret Diaries of Miss Anne Lister, James Kent, Maxine Peake, Contracorriente, Javier Fuentes-León

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