CBC’s Pride Programming – What To Watch
CBC has put together a diverse collection of films to stream on CBC Gem during Pride Month. See the full list below.
DISOBEDIENCE (1×114, Drama, directed by Sebastián Lelio, 2017, Ireland/UK/USA) Begins streaming Friday, May 27
DISOBEDIENCE follows a woman (Rachel Weisz, The Favourite) as she returns to the community that shunned her decades earlier for an attraction to a childhood friend (Rachel McAdams, Spotlight). Once back, their passions reignite as they explore the boundaries of faith and sexuality. DISOBEDIENCE is written by Lelio and Rebecca Lenkiewicz and is based on Naomi Alderman’s book.
SARAH PREFERS TO RUN (1×95, Drama, directed by Chloé Robichaud, 2012, Canada) Begins streaming Friday, June 3
Sarah is a gifted young middle-distance runner. Her life changes when she’s offered admission to Quebec’s best university athletics program, in Montreal – far from her suburban Quebec City home. Sarah doesn’t have her mother’s financial support for the move, or any support at all: her mother worries that leaving will be bad for Sarah’s health and life. But Sarah moves to Montreal anyway, with her friend Antoine. Though barely out of their teens, they get married in order to qualify for the best scholarships and loans. Marriage turns out to be completely different from what the naïve 20-year-olds expected. Sarah loves running more than anything else, but doesn’t want to hurt anyone with the choices she makes.
SOMEONE LIKE ME (1×80, Documentary, 2021, Canada) Begins streaming Monday, June 6
Drake, a young gay man from Uganda, leaves behind everything he knows to attain the universal freedoms everyone deserves: to be who he is and love whomever he chooses without fear of discrimination, persecution, or violence. A group of queer strangers unite to resettle Drake in Vancouver, but they are tasked with a year-long commitment to someone they’ve never met, and struggle with the challenging conditions of this support. Together, Drake and his sponsors embark on an emotional journey in search of personal freedom, revealing how in a world where one must constantly fight for the right to exist, survival itself becomes a victory.
WITH WONDER (1×74, Documentary, directed by Sharon Lewis, 2020, Canada) Begins streaming Tuesday, June 7 *Canadian Premiere*
Born out of Director Sharon Lewis’ own muted struggle with not fitting into neat racial/Queer/Christian boxes, WITH WONDER takes an intimate look at the journey of members of the Queer, Christian community of colour and their attempts to answer the question: Can you be both Christian and Queer? In this feature length documentary, audiences hear and see diverse members of the LGBTQI+ community, including high profile queer activists and Queer clerics, in places like Jamaica, New York, London, and Los Angeles. They each have their own unique ways of amplifying their voices and finding their way back to spiritual health, despite the shaming tactics of some Christian institutions. With Wonder is a love letter to God from the LGBTQI+ community of colour.
1:54 (1×90, Drama, directed by Yan England, 2016, Canada) Begins streaming Wednesday, June 8
Tim (Antoine Olivier Pilon, Mommy), a shy sixteen-year-old athlete, is both brilliant and talented. But the pressure he undergoes pushes him to the edge, where human limits reach the point of no return.
NO ORDINARY MAN (1×84, Documentary, directed by Aisling Chin-Yee and Chase Joynt, 2020, Canada) Begins streaming Wednesday, June 8
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? NO ORDINARY MAN features leading voices in the trans community, including Marquise Vilsón, Scott Turner Schofield, Susan Stryker, C.Riley Snorton, and Thomas Page McBee, among others.
GABI: BETWEEN AGES 8 AND 13 (1×60, Documentary, directed by Engeli Broberg, 2021, Sweden/Norway/Denmark)
Begins streaming Friday, June 10 *Canadian Premiere*
Gabi just wants to be Gabi. A simple wish one could think, but it’s not. Gabi feels different. As an outspoken eight-year-old this never created problems. But as the family moves to a small town and puberty closes in, things start to change. Over the course of five years audiences see Gabi growing up before their eyes, challenging the preconceptions of gender, norms and the right for people to be who they are.
SMALL TOWN PRIDE (1×60, Documentary, directed by Riley Sparks and Chelle Turingan, 2021, Canada) Begins streaming Friday, June 10 *Canadian Premiere*
SMALL TOWN PRIDE offers an intimate look at the joys and challenges of being queer in a small town. Filmed in Alberta, Nova Scotia and the Northwest Territories, the film follows LGBTQ2S+ people and allies as they prepare for their local Pride celebrations. Organizing in church basements, classrooms and around kitchen tables, they take on a conservative town council that won’t fly a rainbow flag and bend some rules to create a safe space for youth to come out. But despite experiences of isolation and discrimination, they love their communities and strive to make them places where everyone, no matter who and how they love, can live and thrive.
CHECK IT (1×90, Documentary, directed by Dana Flor and Toby Oppenheimer, 2016, USA) Begins streaming Friday, June 10
At first glance, they seem unlikely gang-bangers. Some of the boys wear lipstick and mascara, some stilettos. They carry Louis Vuitton bags, but they also carry knives, brass knuckles and mace. As vulnerable gay and transgender youth, they’ve been shot, stabbed, and raped. Once victims, they’ve now turned the tables, beating people into comas and stabbing enemies with ice picks. Started in 2009 by a group of bullied 9th graders, today these 14-22 year old gang members all have rap sheets riddled with assault, armed robbery, and drug dealing charges. Led by an ex-convict named Mo, Check It members are now creating their own clothing label, putting on fashion shows and working stints as runway models. But breaking the cycle of poverty and violence they’ve grown up in is a daunting task. Life for the Check It can be brutal, but – it’s also full of hope and an indomitable resilience.
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.