The Happy Sad
Overcoming serious funding issues, Out in Africa is back! The 20th OIA Gay & Lesbian Film Festival’s final edition for 2013 takes place in Jozi, at Nu Metro Hyde Park, and in Cape Town, at both Nu Metro and Cinema Nouveau V&AC Waterfront, from 18 to 27 October.
OIA will be opened in Johannesburg on Wednesday 16 October by Justice Edwin Cameron. The opening night speaker in Cape Town, on Thursday 17 October, is still to be confirmed.
The sure-fire hit of the festival is expected to be the mega-controversial French film Blue is the Warmest Colour, Abdellatif Kechiche’s three-hour epic, awarded the Cannes Palme d’Or by a jury headed by Steven Spielberg.
Variety said that the film features “the most explosively graphic lesbian sex scenes in recent memory”. Courtesy of Ster Kinekor Cinema Nouveau, OIA’s screenings of Blue is the Warmest Colour will be its South African première.
Blue is the Warmest Colour
German director Patrick Schuckmann will present his film Lose Your Head, a tense and sexy psychological thriller based on a true story. Luis, a young Spaniard, comes to summery Berlin to party and meets the sexy, intriguing Viktor. It all becomes scary and sinister when a Greek woman mistakes Luis for her brother who has disappeared. Schuckmann will run script writing workshops in Jozi and Cape Town.
Another German offering is the award winning Free Fall (Freier Fall) directed by Stephan Lacant. Set far from the gay world, it is a gritty, intense study of a riot squad policeman whose life comes apart when he falls for a colleague. Beautifully shot, exquisitely acted, Free Fall is part Brokeback Mountain, part Undertow.
Director Rodney Evans, a guest of the 2005 Festival with Brother to Brother, has delivered a well-scripted, often pin-sharp delving into the new rules of engagement as permanence makes way for pleasure in The Happy Sad.
Hot Guys with Guns
Here two couples, one (nearly) straight, one gay, find themselves exploring alternatives to the usual ’til-death-do-us-part monogamy roundabout, with intriguing consequences and more twists than a 5th Avenue pretzel.
Doug Spearman’s Hot Guys with Guns is a modern take on the old-fashioned detective story. It’s Chinatown meets Boystown. A series of raids on exclusive parties leaves a raft of LA’s most influential gay men high and dry. Will our amateur PIs catch the bastards, or just the clap? By turns tense and dramatic,
it’s also titillating, funny, cruisey, filled with Hollywood insider-humour and some pretty decent acting. Lots of fun.
Out in the Dark, directed by Michael Mayer, is a multi-award winning Israeli film that delivers a gripping tale of love that both comments on, and uses the backdrop of, Israeli-Palestinian politics to great effect.
Palestinian Nimr sneaks across the border at night to the gay bars of Tel Aviv where he meets the sexy Israeli lawyer, Roy. The cinematography, music and editing all contribute to an edgy, urgent drama of star-crossed lovers.
Another French film is the documentary Louis(e) de Ville, Portrait of a Bad Girl. This is not to be missed by anyone. Louis(e), a guest of the Festival courtesy of the French Embassy / IFAS will attend all screenings, and perform her inimitable style of live burlesque in both cities. Intelligent, articulate and political, she performs in burlesque shows throughout Europe.
Details of her performances and workshops are on the OIA website. Portrait screens as a double bill with In their Room: London directed by Travis Mathews, who often collaborates with James Franco.
In their Room offers a surprising cross-section of gay men who share what’s on their minds and… Intelligent and insightful, compulsive and compelling, voyeuristic and sometimes just plain crazy, the film is also surprisingly tender.
Out in the Dark
And for a truly South African experience the Festival includes a programme of three local shorts: Benedicte Roumega’s White Lies, set in a Cape Town hair salon, starring Alan Committee; Oko Macanda’s Somagwaza about two boys undergoing their initiation into the world of men; and Duan Myburgh’s Durban International Film festival award winning tale of love and revenge, The Brave Unseen.
For screening dates and times and more information, visit www.oia.co.za.
Nu Metro (Jozi and CT): R53 all concessions apply. Go to www.numetro.co.za to book or contact the call centre (8am to 8pm) 0861 246 362.
In Cape Town, Blue is the Warmest Colour screens at Cinema Nouveau: R63 all concessions apply. For bookings and info visit www.cinemanouveau.co.za or call Ticketline on 082 16789.
HELP THE FESTIVAL!
Assist the Film Festival by applying for a MySchool MyVillage MyPlanet card and swipe every time you shop. Click here to find out more!