The San Francisco 43rd International LGBTQ+ Film Festival kicks off today with a slate of more than a hundred films depicting queer realities around the world that will be shown until the end of June.
A worldwide reference for queer cinema, the festival that began its journey in 1977, eight years after the Stonewall riots in New York City, will host filmmakers coming from all corners of the United States and beyond for the next ten days.
Like every year, Latino cinema will have an important presence in the festival, with a showcase of 19 films of recent production being presented and filmmakers coming from Latin America to introduce their films.
Highlights include Tremors (Guatemala), the second film by Jayro Bustamante, director of the acclaimed Ixcanul, an eerie drama about the efforts of an evangelical family in Guatemala City in trying to convert Pablo, who leaves his wife and children behind to live with the man he loves; the second film by Alex Rivera, director of the cult film Sleep Dealer (2008), The Infiltrators (United States), a dramatized documentary co-directed with Cristina Ibarra about an activist group of undocumented youth who risk their lives wanting to free inmates from a Florida detention center; History Lessons (Mexico) by Marcelino Islas Hernández, about a high school teacher who is weighed down by chains of habit until she has an electrical encounter with a rebellious student; and Carmen y Lola (Spain) by Arantxa Echevarría, a subtle and beautiful love story between two girls set within the gypsy community in Madrid’s barrios.
Also worth mentioning are the films from Argentina Brief Story from the Green Planet by Santiago Loza, a poetic fable about a trans artist and her two childhood friends during a trip, and Lucio Castro’s debut feature End of the Century, a torrid romance between two men that crosses borders and extends in time after they first meet in Barcelona; the Brazilian Socrates by Alexandre Moratto, about a teenager who, after the death of her mother, falls in love with a boy older than him in the streets of São Paulo; We Are the Radical Monarchs (USA) by Linda Goldstein, about Oakland activists Anayvette Martinez and Marilyn Hollinquest, and their leadership program for girls of color; and the Mexican This Is Not Berlin by Hari Sama, about two punk boys in Mexico City during the 1986 World Cup.
Other Latino films of the festival are Second Star on the Right (Ruth Caudeli, Colombia), about a woman of disorderly life who faces the middle age; Family Members (Mateo Bendesky, Argentina), about the life of a gay teenager and his older sister in a sleepy coastal town; Fireflies (Bani Khoshnoudi, Mexico), about an Iranian who escaped from his country to the port of Veracruz and falls in love with an ex-convict; The Daughters of Fire (Albertina Carri, Argentina), about a couple that gathers a great variety of lovers during a trip; and A Girl’s Band (Marilina Giménez, Argentina), a chronicle of the queer Argentine music scene from punk to the present.
Also Mr. Leather (Daniel Nolasco, Brazil), a funny look at the Brazil’s second Mister Leather pageant; Sister Aimee (Samantha Buck & Marie Schlingmann, United States), a comedy based on the true story of evangelist Aimee Semple McPherson who traveled to Mexico in the 1920s; One Taxi Ride (Mak CK, Mexico / Singapore), about the trauma of a young man who was raped in a taxi ten years earlier by a group of men; Clementine (Lara Jean Gallagher, United States), a minimalist melodrama about the relationship between two women set on the shores of a lake; and the US-Brazil co-production The Garden Left Behind (Flavio Alves), about an undocumented trans and her grandmother as they struggle to make ends meet in New York City.
FRAMELINE43 will screen films at the Castro, Roxie and Victoria theaters in San Francisco, as well as the Shattuck in Berkeley and the Piedmont in Oakland. Tickets and schedule: frameline.org.