Out and About
New LGBT-Themed Movies
There seem to be more LGBT themed films hitting mainstream theatres and festivals as of late. Here are three new one’s worth checking out.
Closet Monster is by award winning director Stephen Dunn, and features Connor Jessup, Aaron Abrams, Sofia Benzhaf, Joanne Kelly and Isabella Rossellini (in one of her most bizarre roles ever). The film has won many awards including Best Canadian Feature at TIFF, Best Director and Best Screenplay at the Atlantic Film Festival and Best Canadian Feature at the Inside Out LGBT Film Festival.
Oscar Madly hovers on the brink of adulthood – destabilized by his dysfunctional parents, unsure of his sexuality, and haunted by horrific images of a tragic gay bashing he witnessed as a child. A talking hamster, imagination and the prospect of love help him confront his surreal demons and discover himself.
Watch the trailer here
ALIGARH is based on the true story of a secretly gay Indian professor at the renowned Aligarh Muslim University in Uttar Pradesh, India. His name was Ramchandra Siras and he hid he sexuality for fear of reprimand from the university and the community. In a sting operation conducted by a local television channel, Siras is caught in compromising photographs with a young rickshaw driver and loses his position at the university. But this is only the beginning of the tragic and nuanced tale of the modern Indian gay male experience.
Rajkummar Rao is the breakout star of ALIGARH, taking on the role of Deepu Sebastian, the journalist at the forefront of Siras’ exposure. Rajukummar‘s career began in 2010 with much success, already having been awarded the National Film Award For Best Actor and Filmfare Critics Award for Best Actor for his portrayal of Shahid Azmi in Shahid (2013).
Director Hansal Mehta, best known for his successful Shahid (2013) returns with ALIGARH. Mehta has won over five accolades, including the most recent 1st KA Abbas Honor for Film with Outstanding Social Sensitivity in 201 for his film, Shahid. Other notable awards include the Golden Lotus Award for Best Direction in 2014 for Shahid and New York Indo-American Arts Council Film Festival Award for Best Director in 2014 for Shahid.
Watch the trailer here.
Love Is All You Need
Based on the award winning acclaimed short film, “Love is All You Need?” is the theatrical feature length version that explores bullying, racism, and prejudice in a way never been done before on the big screen. The film is a forbidden love story that takes place in a world where gay is straight, straight is gay, and heterophobia is prevalent. The short film of the same name garnered over 40 million views online and was self-translated by fans into more than a dozen languages, touching individuals around the world. The feature film not only explores this “flipped world,” but is also based on the tragic true stories of individuals that were rejected for being different: Matthew Shepard, who was beaten, tied to a fence and left to die for being gay, and Tyler Clementi, a college student who faced severe cyberbullying and ultimately committed suicide.
A town is rocked when their local university’s picture-perfect Quarterback star (played by Briana Evigan) is outed for being a heterosexual after her peers discover her secret love affair with a male journalist (Tyler Blackburn). Their community is part of a world much like our own, but with a twist: same sex couples are the majority and mixed gender couples are the minority. The fallout of the football star’s outing puts a spotlight on how intolerance of differences affects youth, college students, parents and the town as a whole. As the unique characters interact and their lives collide, we also get a look at the effects of other instances of bullying and persecution, each pulled from real world experiences. The film features Briana Evigan as Jude (Step Up 2: The Streets), Tyler Blackburn as Ryan (Pretty Little Liars), Ana Ortiz (Devious Maids), Emily Osment (Hannah Montana), Elisabeth Rohm (American Hustle), Jenica Bergere (Frozen), Katherine LaNasa (The Campagin), and Jeremy Sisto (Suburgatory).
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About the Author
Bryen Dunn is a freelance journalist with a focus on travel, lifestyle, entertainment and hospitality. He has an extensive portfolio of celebrity interviews with musicians, actors and other public personalities. He enjoys discovering delicious eats, tasting spirited treats, and being mesmerized by musical beats.