2017 South Africa 88mins
Director: John Trengove
Starring: Nakhane Touré, Niza Jay Ncoyini, Bongile Mantsai
Xolani, a lonely factory worker, joins the men of his community in the mountains of the Eastern Cape to initiate a group of teenage boys into manhood. When a defiant initiate from the city discovers his best kept secret, Xolani’s entire existence begins to unravel. The Wound is a compelling and taboo-breaking South African feature taking the international festival circuit by storm. Leading a new wave of African cinema, it is equal parts coming-of-age story, love drama, and intense psychological thriller told from a uniquely African perspective. A bold and unflinching new voice on the international stage. The Wound is the recipient of some 14 festival awards.
Rising even higher than the greatest expectations engendered by the International Press when it became a favorite of the film festivals, BEAUTIFUL BOXER is one of the more poetic, sensitive, luxuriously vivid and colorful films to come out of Thailand - and that is saying a lot, given the extravagant epics that yearly grow in popularity. This work of art is simply stunning in content, in direction, in acting, and in heartfelt simplicity of message. This is a great one!
• Torino International Gay & Lesbian Film Festival – Best Feature Film
• Thailand National Film Association Awards – Best Actor
• San Sebastián International Film Festival – Sebastian Award
• Milan International Lesbian and Gay Film Festival – Best Film
• Outfest – Achievement Award – Outstanding Emerging Talent
2015 South Africa 76mins
Director: Catherine Stewart
Starring: Thishiwe Ziqubu, Petronella Tshuma, Camilla Lily Waldman, Sandi Schultz
A striking departure from anything we have seen in South African cinema, Catherine Stewart’s film explores the discrepancy between the country’s enlightened new constitution towards gender and sexuality, and deeply ingrained societal and class attitudes.
Terri and Dez are an affluent longtime mixed-race lesbian couple who have raised Asanda, a black daughter, since childhood. The couple is approaching their twentieth anniversary, but Terri comes to believe her partner, businesswoman Dez, is having an affair with another woman. Meanwhile, free-spirited, 18-year-old Asanda is experimenting with her own sexuality and finds herself drawn to Shado, a charismatic cross-dressing lesbian from the slums, despite the disapproval of her hipster boyfriend and the misgivings of her concerned mothers. Ignoring them, Asanda goes to spend the night with Shado in the shantytown of Khayelitsha, a fateful decision for all concerned.
Tightly drawn, very provocative and brimming with unbridled raw storytelling energy, While You Weren’t Looking opens doors of perception into a world we haven’t explored before.
Palm Springs International Festival 2016
Beautifully shot and with powerful performances from all the cast, this is compulsory watching.
Grethe Koen, City Press *****
• Best Film - Audience Award, 2015 Pink Apple Zurich, Switzerland
• Best Feature Director - Jury Award 2015 QFilms, California
• Best Narrative Feature Film - Jury Award 2015 Tampa Bay Int. G&LFF, Florida
• Best Film - Audience Award, 2015 queerfilm festival, Bremen, Germany
• In Competition – 2015 Torino Gay & Lesbian Film Festival, Turin, Italy
• Nominated for 6 South African Film & Television Awards: Winner of Best Supporting Actress and Make-up & Hairstyling Awards.
The Satyr of Springbok Heights is a bizarre mockumentary filmed in one of Cape Town’s sexy and iconic buildings, Holyrood, in Queen Victoria Street. This offbeat hour-long movie stars people such as journalist Lin Sampson, who plays herself, and eccentrics including a well-known Cape Town bergie.
Billed as a “gay architectural mockumentary”, The Satyr of Springbok Heights is Cape Town architect Robert Silke’s first foray into film. Centred around an art deco building near Cape Town’s Company Gardens, the short film takes a spoof-documentary approach to showcasing a handful of the fictional residents of the building. Expert commentary from Lin Sampson (Sunday Times), and professors Fabio Todeschini and John Caviggia (University of Cape Town), contrast the characters’ outrageous exploits, which recall early John Waters.
Screened in Un Certain Regard Cannes 2002.
In the 1930s slums of Rio de Janeiro, João Francisco dos Santos (Lázaro Ramos) is many things -- the son of black slaves, an ex-con who spent more than two decades in prison, a gangster, a homosexual, and patriarch to a surrogate family of social outcasts. João seeks an outlet of expression through a cabaret act, where he cultivates the transvestite stage persona Madame Satã and becomes a revolutionary icon for society's neglected during a time of upheaval in post-abolition Brazil.
First feature director Karim Ainouz's vivid 1930s-set biopic recreates a key period in the life of a legendary gay streetfighter, criminal and killer, an uneducated black Brazilian descended from slaves who doubled as a cabaret singer and drag artiste styled after Josephine Baker.
2003 SA / Canada 100mins
Directors: John Greyson & Jack Lewis
Starring: Rouxnet Brown, Neil Sandilands
Set in 18th-century South Africa, the film dramatises the true story of Claas Blank (Rouxnet Brown) and Rijkhaart Jacobsz (Neil Sandilands), two prisoners on Robben Island who were executed for sodomy in 1735. Their relationship also had a racial component, as Jacobsz was a white Dutchman, while Blank was a black Khoi. The film also stars Shaun Smyth as Virgil Niven, a Scottish botanist who befriends Blank for his knowledge of South African flora, but may in fact have his own sexual interest in Blank.
Greyson's latest is a period piece involving forbidden same-sex, interracial love in early South Africa. Co-directed with activist filmmaker Lewis, film has enough erotic and exotic content to win arthouse viewers.
This film will confuse the average filmgoer but a close viewing will reveal a rich tapestry of themes for those who are willing to make the leap beyond conventional storytelling.
2013 USA 96mins
Director: Stacie Passon
Starring: Robin Weigert
Concussion premiered at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival. The story is old and familiar: Married couple, busy with work and raising children, lose the passion and start taking each other for granted.
Smart, nuanced, and sexy, Concussion transcends its more awkward moments thanks to Robin Weigert's remarkable starring performance.
Concussion, a new film written and directed by Stacie Passon, takes this well-worn storyline and makes something unique out of it, something fresh and bizarre.
Intelligent drama about sexuality and self-deception
2013 Berlin International Film Festival - Teddy Award Jury Prize - outstanding film about LGBT themes.