OUTshine LGBTQ+ Film Festival Fort Laud
12th Edition goes Virtual: Dec 3-6
The 12th edition of the OUTshine LGBTQ+ Film Festival Fort Lauderdale, a bi-annual film festival whose mission is to unite the community through social events and LGBTQ+ media that inspire, entertain, and educate, is going virtual! Building upon the success of its Miami-based virtual film festival held online earlier this year, the Fort Lauderdale edition, presented by Gilead Sciences and Broward County, will showcase 21 world-class contemplative, comedic and creative films from 11 countries, (several making their US debuts during the streaming festival). All of the films will be made available to viewers throughout the state of Florida from December 3 – 6. The festival will also host livestreamed special events with cocktail happy hours, talent and Q & A sessions as a way to virtually tie the community together.
“This year’s Fort Lauderdale edition of the OUTshine LGBTQ+ Film Festival will follow in the footsteps of our successful Miami virtual edition which simultaneously opened-up the dialogue for equality in film throughout the state of Florida, for the first time,” said Victor Gimenez, executive director of OUTshine LGBTQ+ Film Festival. “Despite the current health pandemic climate, interest in diverse arts and film has continued to grow and we’re thrilled to share these culturally significant US debuts and internationally award-winning stories championing unity and acceptance with a much broader audience.”
In keeping with social distancing guidelines and community safety, this year’s festival will feature the OUTshine Drive-OUT film Cowboys (USA), a critically acclaimed drama, on Thursday, December 4, at 7 pm at Pier 66 Marina (2150 SE 17th Street in Fort Lauderdale). Awarded “Outstanding Performance in a U.S. Feature” at Outfest LGBT Film Festival and “Best Screenplay” at the TriBeCa Film Festival, Cowboys stars Steve Zahn (Treme’, Modern Family, Dallas Buyers Club) as Troy, a father who tries to liberate his young transgender son by taking him to Canada, but as a frustrated female detective spearheads an investigation, she discovers that the child’s family situation is more complicated than she thought. Director Anna Kerrigan has created a powerful story that propels this modern-day western forward with an uncommon emotional veracity.
Another event of note in this year’s line-up is the Saturday, December 5, 7 pm 10th anniversary screening of BearCity (USA), an outrageous, hilarious and authentic touching portrait of a group of friends trying to get by via laughing, loving and sex-ing in New York City. A virtual cast reunion and interactive Q & A will follow the film. Other highlights include the US premiere of the romantic drama Walking with Shadows (Nigeria), the award-winning international comedy-drama Goodbye Mother (Thưa mẹ con đi) (Vietnam), the award-winning international drama No Hard Feelings (Germany) and the feature thriller Through A Glass Darkly (USA). A virtual closing awards ceremony will take place on Sunday, December 6, at 8 pm via
Some of this year’s films are:
A Worm In The Heart – Documentary – is a collection of stories of tragedy, strength and resilience from the LGBT+ community across Russia. Shot in six cities along the Trans-Siberian Railway, this documentary details the current state of the Russian queer community – giving both broad societal overviews and deeply personal accounts from activists and non-activists alike. The film follows Paul Rice and Liam Jackson Montgomery, a gay couple from Ireland, as they travel on the Trans-Siberian Railway, stopping in cities thousands of kilometers apart meeting with a diverse range of LGBT+ people-from Nobel Peace prize nominees and drag queens to those who have suffered brutal homophobic and transphobic attacks
Ask Any Buddy – Documentary – Long before films like Love, Simon and Call Me By Your Name became common fare at the multiplex, the only places gay men could see their lives and lusts depicted on screen with any degree of honesty was at their local all-male adult cinema. From coming out stories to romances, melodramas to camp comedies, the hundreds of films churned out by the gay adult film industry throughout the 60s, 70s, and 80s were a driving force behind the spread of gay culture and constitute a largely forgotten cinematic document of the era — films that were often shot in actual queer spaces, starred the people who frequented them, and then played back in movie theaters that doubled as safe communal spaces for members of the community.
From casual tearoom cruising to actual police raids, Ask Any Buddy uses rare footage shot at dozens of real bathhouses, bars, movie theaters, pride parades and legendary hotspots like New York’s West Side Piers to explore both the sex film genre’s unique blend of fantasy and reality and its role in documenting a subculture that was just starting to come into visibility in the years immediately following the Stonewall Riots.
Goodbye Mother (Thưa mẹ con đi) – Comedy, Drama, Foreign, Family, Romance – Van, the heir of a Vietnamese clan, returns home from the US for the first time in 9 years to relocate his father’s tomb. His family is surprised when he brings a young Vietnamese-American named Ian along. No one knows that Ian is Van’s boyfriend, and Van is planning to come out to his widowed mother, who expects him to get married and have kids to fulfill his duty as an heir. Complicating the homecoming is Van’s grandmother, who has dementia and mistakes Ian for her grandson. While struggling to find the perfect occasion to come out, Van learns that his mother is seriously ill. Have the tissues ready for tears of laughter and heartache as you travel into the world of Trinh Dinh Le Minh’s heart-melting romantic dramedy, Goodbye Mother.
Gossamer Folds – Trans, African American – Gossamer Folds is a heartfelt tale of big dreams and unlikely friendships in 1986 suburban Missouri. Bored with his new home and looking for an escape from his parents’ constant arguments, vocabulary-obsessed 9-year old Tate Millikin sparks a strong bond with two of his neighbors: a Black trans woman named Gossamer and her retired English professor father, Edward. Tate finds in Gossamer and Edward what he desperately lacks from his parents: guidance, care, and respect…not to mention being introduced to all sorts of new words. But as threats to separate the group begin to mount, all while Gossamer entertains the idea of following her dreams to New York to become a Fashion Designer, Tate must accept the possibility of losing the first meaningful friendships he’s ever had.
Los Fuertes (The Strong Ones) – Drama – Lucas travels to visit his sister in a remote town in southern Chile. In front of the ocean and fog, he meets Antonio, a boatswain in a local fishing boat. When an intense romance grows between them, their strength, independence and adulthood become immovable in front of the tide. The Strong Ones is a beautiful, staggering and tender story of love and bravery between two men in search of their own freedom at the end of the world.
No Hard Feelings – Drama, Immigration, Gay – Parvis, the son of exiled Iranians, was caught shoplifting. He is sentenced to community service at a refugee shelter where he meets the siblings Banafshe and Amon, who have fled Iran. As a romantic attraction between Parvis and Amon grows, the fragile relationship between the three is put to the test.
No Ordinary Man – Documentary, Music, Trans – For decades, the life of American Jazz musician Billy Tipton was framed as the story of an ambitious woman passing as a man in pursuit of a music career. In No Ordinary Man, Tipton’s story is re-imagined and performed by trans artists as they collectively paint a portrait of an unlikely hero. Together, the filmmakers join Tipton’s son Billy Jr. to reckon with a complicated and contested legacy: how do you tell the story of someone who was hiding in plain sight yet desperate to be seen?
Walking With Shadows – Drama, Romance, Foreign, POC – Ebele Njoko has been running his whole life, searching for love and acceptance from his family and driven to recreate himself as Adrian, a respected father, husband and brother. But when his past starts to catch up with him, his fabricated life begins to unravel. Adapted from the critically acclaimed 2005 novel by award-winning Nigerian writer Jude Dibia, this delicate and powerful portrait of queer Nigeria tells the story of a man coming to terms with the reality he has created for himself to hide in plain sight.
A full list of films and descriptions can be found at outshinefilm.com/films/program.
Tickets for the 12th edition of the OUTshine LGBTQ+ Virtual Film Festival Fort Lauderdale are on sale, now, at outshinefilm.com/buy-tickets. Prices for individual films are $7.50 each and value packages range from $37.50 to $100. Opening night drive-in tickets are $40 per vehicle. OUTshine members and annual pass holders receive discounts on all packages.
For additional information about OUTshine LGBTQ+ Film Festival memberships and film packages, call 877-766-8156.