qFLIX Philadelphia 2015 MAINTAINS THE TRADITION
OFFERS EUROPEAN FLAIR TO FILM LINEUP
Admit these days not enough of us see European films though the industry continues to flourish in almost every nation on the continent. Many Americans still maintain an interest in the motherland, the United Kingdom, but, beyond that, they have a fascination for the different lifestyles of any number of countries that belong to the Common Market.
When it comes to the film industry, the model is dramatically different from the classic Hollywood studio system and there is support and money the federal government of the European Union for film making, unlike in the United States where the money is raised independently through investors who hope to realize a return on their money, then sold to a studio, rather than generated by one. Queer director (and native Philadelphian) told us that he had to raise all the money up front for Lee Daniels’ The Butler despite the prior film success of Precious and the star-studded cast that he had for the movie.
So, let’s get down to brass tacks! When was the last time that YOU saw a foreign film and had to read subtitles in English? Some generations grew up doing that. After a while, you didn’t even think about them. As a film lover, they were second nature to the film experience when viewing a European film. So don’t let the issue of subtitles deter you from actually attending some of these select LGBTQ films that we as producers (Thom Cardwell and James Duggan along with a small screening and programming committee) chose to premiere to you.
They’re definitely worth seeing and on a big screen to get the full impact and enjoy with others in the communal experience of being in a theater with an audience of strangers or maybe not, many of you festival badge holders actually know each other, some of you, even met at previous film festivals over two decades.
Go ahead, enjoy qFLIX Philadelphia 2015’s European Flair!
All Yours | 2014 | Czech Republic | 102 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance | Director: David Lambert | Czech with subtitles
Wednesday, July 8 @ 5:00 PM @ the Prince Theater USA PREMIERE
How’s this for a quirky “love triangle” between an Argentine hustler, a portly Belgian baker and his “comely” employee? It’s as odd as it is funny. With so many contrasting characters from different nations, the story has a hilarious International flavor (we are in a bakery after all). The film has been gained high praises for its unique and entertaining story line, and to an award-deserving performance by actor Pere Biscayar. Definitely memorable; uniquely entertaining. One of the most hilarious films in the festival! Side-splitting laughter!
Game Face | 2015 | Belgium/USA | 95 min | Documentary, Sport | Director: Michiel Thomas | English
Wednesday, July 8 @ 7:15 PM @ the Prince Theater EAST COAST PREMIERE
GAME FACE shows the quest to self-realization of LGBTQ athletes and the acceptance in society. This documentary tells the parallel story of Fallon Fox, MMA’s first transgender pro fighter, and Terrence Clemens, a gay college basketball player in Oklahoma. Focusing upon their coming process sheds light on the obstacles LGBTQ sports players deal with throughout their career. Former NBA star Jason Collins shines as a mentor for Terrence in this inspiring and empowering real life story. A timely documentary as the world of sports, really on all levels, opens up (or quickly closes back down) to openly LGBTQ athletes. It’s compelling! But without subtitles because it’s in English.
Dreams from Strangers | 2015 | Italy | 70 min | Crime, Drama, Romance | Director: Roberto Cuzzillo | Russian and Italian with subtitles
Sunday, July 12 @ 3:30 PM @ the Prince Theater EAST COAST PREMIERE
What could possibly go wrong with a gay love story between an Italian competitive swimmer and a Russian translator? A lot. The two men come from very different worlds. Direct from Inside Out, the water baby, Massimo is used to a gorgeous Italian seaside resort. Translator Vladimir is working at a swimming competition in Saint Petersburg, Russia. There the two meet and it doesn’t take long for them to fall in love. The young swimmer does seem to have longings for something yet undiscovered, undefined. The translator is more anchored in his ways, especially his conservative opinions in contrast to Massimo’s more carefree world view. The contrast, conflict, tension between the two, set against Putin’s homophobic Russia, makes for a haunting yet poetic story.
Love in the Time of the Civil War | 2014 | Canada | 120 min | Drama | Director: Rodrigue Jean | French with subtitles
Sunday, July 12 @ 5:30 PM @ the Prince Theater CENTERPIECE FILM – EAST COAST PREMIERE
“Celebrated Quebec filmmaker Rodrigue Jean takes a fearless, unflinching look at the reality of addiction in this tough-minded docudrama set in the bleak milieu of hustlers and junkies in Montreal,” wrote one critic. It’s the underbelly of the city that so many tourists, including gay males, enjoy visiting or even fantasizing about residing. But the main character, Alex, is far from the beautiful and glamorous world of this French-Canadian world-class destination. His days are centered around satisfying his drug addiction, hustling for money to buy more drugs, running errands for dealers, or plotting muggings for more drug money. His home life, if you can call it that, is shared with other addicts, sex junkies, and other lowlifes. It’s difficult to endure but a powerful statement of a fallen, darker side of reality. Not European film per se, but in French with subtitles.
MALA MALA | 2015 | USA | 87 Minutes | Documentary | Directors: Antonio Santini, Daniel Sickles | Spanish with subtitles.
Saturday, July 11 @ 12:00 PM @ the Caplan Theater EAST COAST PREMIERE
The documentary share with viewers, what they captured over a three year period, in the portrayal of the fight for personal and community acceptance at the beginning of a new transliberation movement in Puerto Rico, as trans people came out of the shadows and into the spotlight, through self-discovery and activism. A diverse collection of subjects–LGBTQ activists, business owners, sex workers, and a boisterous group of drag performers called The Doll House–are featured. Not European per se, but in Spanish with subtitles.