The second instalment of the 19th Out In Africa Gay and Lesbian Film Festival runs from 27 July to 5 August in Cape Town and Joburg. It offers an impressive line-up of queer films to keep you warm this winter.
(For the second year in a row, Out In Africa is running three mini-festivals in 2012, with the third edition scheduled for 17-28 October 2012.)
Keep The Lights On, the 2012 Berlin Teddy Award winner for Best Feature, leads the winter programme. Directed by former Sundance Grand Jury Prize winner Ira Sachs (Forty Shades of Blue), Keep The Lights On is a New York love story about a sex-addicted filmmaker and a cokehead literary lawyer.
Salon’s Andrew O’Hehir called Keep The Lights On “an instant landmark in gay cinema and easily the finest dramatic film I saw at Sundance this year.”
In the multi-award-winning Cloudburst, Oscar-winners Olympia Dukakis (Moonstruck, Tales of the City) and Brenda Fricker (My Left Foot) star as an aging lesbian couple who take to the road when one is committed to a nursing home. Wickedly funny, these older Thelma-and-Louises are for everyone.
Three (Drei), directed by Tom Twyker, is another highlight. Twyker is one of the world’s most acclaimed directors, responsible for cult films like Run Lola Run, Perfume and The International. He’s already won seven international awards for Three, the deceptively simple story of a couple falling in love with the same man.
Simon and his lover Hanna meet and have an affair with Adam separately, neither initially aware of the others infidelity. Unashamedly intellectual, Three is for the thinking queer, tired of the coming out stories and the Hollywood pink of mainstream gay cinema.
Kaboom, directed by Gregg Araki (Mysterious Skin), won the first ever Queer Palme at Cannes International Film Festival for its contribution to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex issues. It’s a quirky, entirely bizarre dark comedy that’s part David Lynch, part Glee, and all about sex.
Director Rikkie Beadle-Blair will attend the festival for the screening of Bashment, which explores the aftermath of a brutal gay bash attack at a reggae dance hall competition in London. He’s conducting filmmaking seminars at The Big Fish School of Digital Filmmaking in both Cape Town and Johannesburg.
Other must-see films include Ausente (Absent), an Argentinean suspense thriller about an older straight man being pursued by one of his students. It won the 2011 Berlinale Teddy Award.
The Skinny, about the loves and losses of a group of black men, and a lesbian, who reunite in the Big Apple, is from the director of the ever-popular Noah’s Arc TV series; and there’s Stud Life, a new Brit film that intertwines the love stories of two best friends, a cool black butch and a sharp white twink boy.
Out In Africa screens at Nu Metro V&A Waterfront in Cape Town and Nu Metro Hyde Park in Johannesburg.
For screening schedules and more information visit www.oia.co.za. View trailers for some of the films in the festival below