5th Annual Kaleidoscope LGBTQ+ Film Festival Line up
Thursday Oct. 31st
At the time of release, The Advocate dubbed 1985’s A Nightmare on Elm Street 2: Freddy’s Revenge the gayest horror film ever made. For the film’s closeted young star, Mark Patton, such a tag was a stark reminder about the homophobia rampant in Hollywood at the time—and the painful experience he had making the high-profile film and living through the polarizing critical aftermath.
Stage manager Rachel Gurner (Hannah Pearl Utt) still lives in her childhood apartment above the theater her family owns and operates in New York City. Level-headed Rachel is the only thing standing between her family -her off-kilter actress sister Jackie (Jen Tullock), her eccentric playwright father Mel (Mandy Patinkin), and her deadpan preteen niece Dodge (Oona Yaffe) -and utter chaos. Then, in the wake of a sudden family tragedy, Rachel and Jackie learn their presumed-deceased mother (Judith Light) is not just alive but thriving as a soap-opera star. Also starring Mike Colter and Alec Baldwin.
Tania is a trans girl who performs at discos in Buenos Aires. Pedro is a young creature of the night, a voguing dancer. Daniela works as a waitress and deals with a break-up that’s left her in deep melancholia. The three of them are close friends. When Tania receives the news that her grandmother has passed away, she returns to their hometown with her two friends to take care of the house she’s left her as an inheritance. But she finds out that an Alien has accompanied her grandmother during her last years, keeping her company. The grandma asks Tania to return the creature to the place where it appeared the first time. Tania, Pedro and Daniela begin a journey looking for that unknown place. But when Tania begins to feel sick and the road gets tough, they will have to look inside of themselves to overcome their fears and prove their true friendship so they can accomplish their mission before it is too late for the Alien and maybe for Tania.
Saturday November 2nd
Bursting with the colorful street style & music of Nairobi’s vibrant youth culture, RAFIKI is a tender love story between two young women in a country that still criminalizes homosexuality. Kena and Ziki have long been told that “good Kenyan girls become good Kenyan wives” - but they yearn for something more. Despite the political rivalry between their families, the girls encourage each other to pursue their dreams in a conservative society. When love blossoms between them, Kena and Ziki must choose between happiness and safety.
MAJOR! explores the life and campaigns of Miss Major Griffin-Gracy, a formerly incarcerated Black transgender elder and activist who has been fighting for the rights of trans women of color for over 40 years.
Miss Major is a veteran of the Stonewall Rebellion and a survivor of Attica State Prison, a former sex worker, an elder, and a community leader and human rights activist. She is simply “Mama” to many in her community. Her personal story and activism for transgender civil rights intersects LGBT struggles for justice and equality from the 1960s to today. At the center of her activism is her fierce advocacy for her girls, trans women of color who have survived police brutality and incarceration in men’s jails and prisons.
1986. Mexico City. Seventeen-year-old Carlos doesn't fit in anywhere: not in his family nor with the friends he has chosen in school. But everything changes when he is invited to a mythical nightclub where he discovers the underground nightlife scene: post punk, sexual liberty, and drugs that challenges the relationship with his best friend Gera and lets him find his passion for art.
Sunday November 3rd
Winner of multiple awards, including the Queer Lion from the 75th Annual Venice Film Festival, José is a gripping, layered and beautifully honest story about one working-class young man’s struggle to find himself. Made in the neorealist filmmaking tradition, the film is a nuanced and vivid look at being gay in Central America.
José (magnetic newcomer Enrique Salanic) lives with his mother (Ana Cecilia Mota) in Guatemala City, where they survive on her selling sandwiches at bus stops and with him working at a local restaurant. It is a poor and sometimes dangerous country where, dominated by conservative Catholic and Evangelical Christian religion, living one’s life as an openly gay man is hard for José to imagine. His mother has never had a husband, and as her youngest and favorite child, though at the edge of manhood at 19-years old, she is determined to hold on to him. Reserved and private, José fills his free moments playing with his phone and random sex with other men arranged on street corners and dating apps. When he meets attractive and gentle Luis (Manolo Herrera), a migrant from the rural Caribbean coast, they pursue an unexpected relationship with more emotion than José has ever felt. He is thrust into new passion and pain, and self-reflection, that push him to rethink his life even as he is reluctant to take a leap of faith.
Michael Barnett’s dynamic documentary takes us into the lives of three high school athletes—all at different stages of their athletic seasons, personal lives, and unique paths as transgender teens. Their stories span across the U.S.—from Sarah, a skier and teen policymaker in New Hampshire, to Andraya, a track star in Connecticut openly transitioning into her authentic self. The film centers on Mack Beggs, who made headlines last year when he became the Texas State Champion in wrestling and was heralded as a hero by some while receiving hate and threats from others.
Trans athletes have to work harder than their cisgender peers in order to thrive in their field while also having the courage and resilience to face daily harassment and discrimination. The kids in this film have found sports as a way to channel the negativity around them into a positive, to gain a sense of self-worth and validation. This film is their urgent, articulate plea for acceptance
In a god-fearing small town in 1960s Oklahoma, bespectacled and reclusive teen Iris endures the booze-induced antics of her mother and daily doses of bullying from her classmates. She finds solace in Maggie, the charismatic and enigmatic new girl at school, who hones in on Iris’s untapped potential and coaxes her out of her shell. When Maggie’s mysterious past can no longer be suppressed, the tiny community is thrown into a state of panic, leaving Maggie to take potentially drastic measures and inciting Iris to stand up for her friend and herself.