I have been blessed in my working life to have done a range of amazing roles and over the past 22 years of working at the WA AIDS Council have directly worked in a range of different positions. One of the main focuses, other than my direct work with people with HIV has been working on a range of fundraising initiatives, most notably STYLEAID.
One of the new areas that I am excited to be working on and developing is the Perth International Queer Film Festival. After a sell out year last year I have expanded it from 6 to 9 nights.
Once again the Festival will run at The Backlot Perth and this year we have a free satellite screening of the Mexican film “Velociraptor” with Festival principal sponsor Curtin University on 19th September on campus.
As Artistic Director I have been fortunate to have sat through many hours of both feature films and short films to put the program for this year together. With films from 15 countries this year the program explores LGBTQI experiences from a varied and diverse range of lived experiences.
It was always my aim to present a wide range of stories that are of course entertaining but also have strong narratives about what it is like to be LGBTQI in 2017.
For the second year for the Festival I linked in with film makers all over the world through the Film Festival Portal “Film Freeway” that enabled film makers to submit their feature and short films for consideration to be included in the Festival this year!
The amazing thing about this process is that I received over 1400 films for consideration. This just shows how many film makers are keenly working on expanding their vision of LGBTQI issues and stories. Many of the films submitted where short films, hence my decision to do a night that is just made up of some the best short films submitted but to also include at least 1 short film with each feature during the Festival.
Tickets are starting to sell in the lead up and opening night is almost sold out, which is really exciting!
So now to the films for this year. Opening night features the world premier of ‘Discreet’ from director Travis Matthews that tells the story of a drifter who reconnects with his abuser from when he was a child and wrestles with his sexuality whilst also plotting his revenge. This is a dark, moody film that features amazing performances from the cast.
Opening night (Wednesday September 13) will also feature the Iranian film “12 Eyes Gauging the City”. This surreal short film follows 12 gay men in Iran surrounded by loss and anger and is a powerful statement on the current Iranian landscape for gay men.
Those attending opening night will also receive a glass of Billecart Champagne on arrival and at the end of the night will receive a special gift bag filled with some amazing gifts!
Click on the link above to purchase your tickets to opening night.
The rest of the Festival features:
Retake – a taut psychological drama following a lonely, middle aged man who hires a male sex worker to recreate a road trip from his past. This film will be accompanied by the German short film “Trade Queen”.
BWOY makes its Australian Premiere and tells the story of Brad, who, after the death of his son, becomes entangled in a chaotic and passionate online love affair with Yenny, a young Jamaican man.
Screening along side this feature are “The Magic Hedge” and ‘Ruptures’.
The Saturday night during the Festival sees the romantic comedy ‘Signature Move’. Zyanab is a young Muslim Pakistani woman who moves back in with her mother following the breakup of a relationship. The film follows Zyanab as she falls in love with a female wrestler.
Mai and Alone Together screen with Signature Move.
Sunday 17 September sees our Short Film Festival as part of PIQFF.
Featuring 10 short films that explore many aspects of LGBTQI life journeys. All of the films featured are Australian Premieres.
The short films screening are:
NIQI – tracing the life of transgender ballet dancer Niqi.
Mum, I’m Back – A woman returns, after 40 years to the village where she was born to attend her mothers funeral.
Crack Open My Head – deals with trans and queer self-espression, and presents Isreal’s queer community’s conflict.
Our Skin – A late night chat takes an emotionally intimate turn in this beautifully shot black and white study of a transgender woman and an ex-Marine suffering PTSD.
A Tale with Christ and Jesus – Christ is a lonely young man who has not overcome the loss of his mother and the memories of a violent childhood. Jesus, a student who still lives with his parents, with an intolerant overprotective mother and very different to Christ’s past.
Always – this Australian film explores a young mans journey caring for his dying mother and the consequences of his life when she passes.
Elevator Love Story – a story about attraction and the inner dialogue we create with ourselves.
Breakfast – when a young man suffering from anorexia is pressured to eat breakfast by his boyfriend, the couple are thrust into an other world.
Naughty Amelia Jane -A short film that is a satire of the hilarious hypocrisy of society towards anything that goes against the conventional social order of things.
Little You – exploring what it truly takes to make a family.
Centre of My World premiered at the Melbourne Queer Film Festival in May. This German/Austrian co-production tells the story of a young man who returns to school after a summer spent trying to dodge family conflicts and begins to questions his feelings toward Nicholas, a new classmate and the evolution of his relationship with his best friend Kat.
Also screening with this is the amazing experimental visual short Iridesence, which exposes how society needs to label a person by their sexuality, through dance and interpretive movements that replace dialogue.
FLUIDO – what promises to be one of the most controversial films of this years Festival, we find ourselves transported to a science fiction film set in the 2060’s in a world in which HIV/AIDS has been full eradicated. In some people, however, the virus has mutated into a gene which can be extracted to create a new psychoactive drug.
Cruising Elsewhere films with FLUIDO.
Satyavati is a work of fiction with a primary focus is to let the audience understand that lesbianism is not a disease that needs to be cured and the film maker aims to stand a story of example of why we need to understand each other on levels of humanity more than inclining our existence on misconstrued and judgmental rules.
The short films (A)Typical Couple and The 3rd Try screen with Satyvati.
(A)Typical Couple is about a typical day in a typical life of a typical couple trying to communicate their way through their typical relationship.
The 3rd Try follows Lorie and Ryan as both women navigate their relationship.
Closing night features the Australian Premiere of Fabio Massa’s “Aefetto Domino” – a film about life and its transformation. It is a story of Lorenzo who receives sad news about his health that will change his existence and its domino effect on his life and the lives of people he loves.
The powerful UK short film Partings will screen on closing night and tells the story of an elderly couple, where time has stopped after a lifetime together as they prepare to say goodbye.
As you can see there are lots of amazing films to partake in this year and by attending you are also supporting the fundraising efforts of the WA AIDS Council.
PIQFF promises to once again present some of the best new Queer Films from around the world.
Now what to wear to walk the red carpet on opening night!
Follow the news on PIQFF on FaceBook – https://www.facebook.com/PIQFilmFestival/?ref=bookmarks