Film lovers have two ways to celebrate the kick off of the 17th annual QFest tonight with the premieres of Judas Kiss (7:15 p.m.) and Codependent Lesbian Space Alien Seeks the Same (7:30 p.m.) and the official opening night party at the Loews (9:30 p.m.). Both Mayor Michael Nutter and Marilyn Russell from Ben-FM will be attending to celebrate the 30th anniversary of TLA Entertainment Group, the title sponsor of the local LGBT film festival.
As we gear up for the 12 days of events, we selected a few must-see films – many are making their Philly premieres and a few were even filmed locally.
G Philly is one of the sponsors of eCupid, a story that follows two gay men who have been in a relationship for seven years until one of the men finds himself itching for a little extracurricular romantic activity. But online hook ups aren’t always what they seem as the sometimes wild world of cyber-flirting gets a little out of hand. Bonus: Morgan Fairchild (from Dallas and Falcon Crest) plays a waitress at a greasy spoon in this romantic comedy (July 16-17, 7:30 and 12:15 p.m., respectively, Ritz East).
Jamie and Jessie Are Not Together makes its East Coast premiere at the festival. The musical comedy follows the lives of two queer girls as they navigate first love and long-distance relationships (July 16-17, 7 and 4:30 p.m., respectively, Ritz East).
Making its Philly premiere is Mangus!, a dark comedy featuring famous faces like Heather Matarazzo, Leslie Jordan and John Waters, about a high school senior who wants to be Jesus (July 15 and 17, 7:15 and 2:45 p.m., respectively, Ritz East). Here’s a preview:
John Waters is also featured in a documentary Smut Capital of America that chronicles the porn industry with no shortage of steamy archival footage. The short film is one of several being shown during The Art of Hardcore: Then and Now (July 16, 9:30 p.m., Ritz East).
Milk Stole – a favorite John Waters muse – makes an appearance in Eating Out: Drama Camp, a kind of Glee meets Porky’s for the gay world (July 9 and 12, 7 and 5:15 p.m., respectively, Ritz East).
More shorts, like Coming Out and The Queen, about first love screen during Puppy Love and Lust (July 16-17, 4:45 and 9:15 p.m., respectively, Ritz East).
Philly’s own Michelle Pollino directs Regrets, a short thriller in Short & Scary, about a one-night stand gone wrong. The short features local actor Peter Patrikios (July 8 and 11, 9:30 and 5 p.m., respectively, Ritz East).
Take a trip to London’s East End with Break My Fall, a film about a gender-bending lesbian couple on the party and music scene (July 14-15, 7:15 and 5 p.m., respectively, Ritz at the Bourse). Here’s a preview:
Also from the U.K., Buffering makes its Philly debut with a story about a gay couple who decide to broadcast their intimate escapades online in this funny sex romp (July 14 and 16, 9:30 and 2:45 p.m., respectively, Ritz East).
Girl falls for teacher in the French film The Evening Dress (July 8 and 12, 5 and 7:15 p.m., Ritz East and Ritz at the Bourse, respectively).
Also set in Paris is Gigola, a narrative about the seedy underbelly of gay life in the 1960s (July 13 and 17, 5 and 7 p.m., Ritz at the Bourse and Ritz East, respectively).
Tomboy is also a French film about a young girl who passes as a boy in this coming of age drama a la Truffaut (July 13 and 16, 7:15 and 2:30, respectively, Ritz at the Bourse).
Go Go Crazy is a mockumentary about strippers vying to come out on top. Audiences may recognize many familiar sights in the Gayborhood – it was filmed in Philly with Hedda Lettuce, Jake Steel and others. (July 15, 9:30 p.m., Ritz East).
The One also has a little Philly flavor. The romantic comedy is about a man who discovers he’s gay after getting engaged to a woman (July 10-11, 12:15 and 9:30 p.m., Ritz East).
The trans life is the focus on Gun Hill Road, a drama about a teenage boy transitioning into a woman after his father returns home from prison. Bonus: The very handsome Esai Morales plays daddy (July 14 and 15, 7:15 and 4:45 p.m., Ritz East).
Dolly fans will want to see Hollywood to Dollywood, a documentary about gay twins wooing the country legend into being in their movie and finding out a few important realizations as they drive across country (July 9 and 11, 2:30 and 5 p.m., Ritz East). Check it out:
Get your leather fix in Kink Crusaders, a documentary about the International Mr. Leather contest held each year in Chicago (July 14 and 17, 9:30 p.m., Ritz East and Ritz at the Bourse, respectively).
Chely Wright is the subject of Wish Me Away about her rise in country music and coming out (July 9-10, 2:45 and 7:15 p.m., respectively, Ritz East).
Suburbia runs amok in The Perfect Family starring Kathleen Turner and Richard Chamberlain (July 9, 7:30 p.m., Ritz East).
The gay world comes out in full force for What’s the Name of the Dame? when ABBA meets drag in New York City. Look for appearances by Frank DeCaro, Graham Norton, Joan Rivers and many more famous faces (July 16-17, 9:15 and 2:15 p.m., Ritz East).
Finally, Married in Spandex follows a Philly couple – Amanda Kole and Rachel Turanski – as they travel to Iowa to get married by rapper Leslie Hall (July 16, 5:15 p.m., Ritz at the Bourse).
For a complete list of films and times, visit QFest.