The 33rd edition of BFI Flare: London LGBTQ+ Film Festival unveiled its full programme tonight. One of the world’s most significant and long-standing LGBTQ+ film events, BFI Flare will present over 50 features, more than 80 shorts and a wide range of special events, guest appearances, club nights and much more. Running between 21st – 31st March at BFI Southbank.
As previously announced, the Festival will open with Chanya Button’s breath-taking period drama VITA & VIRGINIA, charting the passionate relationship between literary trailblazer Virginia Woolf and enigmatic aristocrat Vita Sackville-West, starring Elizabeth Debicki and Gemma Arterton as our titular characters.The European Premiere of Justin Kelly’s JT LEROY Close the festival. Starring Laura Dern and Kristen Stewart, the film is adapted from Savannah Knoop’s memoir Girl Boy Girl: How I Became JT LeRoy. It tells the captivating real life story of the most compelling literary ‘hoax’ of our generation.Diane Kruger and Jim Sturgess also star.
The UK Premiere of Tomer Heymann‘s Jonathan Agassi Saved My Life will be the festival’s Centrepiece Screening.The latest documentary from acclaimed filmmaker , in which he paints an illuminating portrait of one of the world’s most successful gay porn stars, Jonathan Agassi, capturing both his highs and his lows.
Other highlights include Marco Berger’s sweet and sexy The Blonde One. Matt Smith will play the legendary photographer Robert Mablethorpe, in Ondi Timoner‘s Mablethorpe. Will he go full frontal? Anna Paquin and Holliday Grainger play lovers in 1950’s Scotland in Annabel Jankel‘s Tell It To The Bees. Keith Behrman‘s teen drama Giant Little Ones classic high school coming-out story supporting turns from Mario Bello and Kyle MacLachlan.
Also at the Festival the films will be showcased into three thematic strands: HEARTS, BODIES and MINDS. Following are highlights from this year’s programme:
In HEARTS include films about love, romance and friendship. In heart-warming drama From Zero To I Love You (Dir. Doug Spearman), a married man must face up to his true desires.The delightful Papi Chulo (Dir. John Butler) stars Matt Bomer as a heartbroken gay TV weatherman who forms an unlikely friendship with an older straight migrant worker. The film is tonight opening Dublin Film Festival with the UK Premiere at Glasgow Film Festival tomorrow (21st February).
In BODIES include stories of sex, identity and transformation. A varied selection of films includes the fabulous 25th anniversary screening of the Oscar-winning classic The Adventures Of Priscilla, Queen Of The Desert (Dir. Stephan Elliott). Winner of the Queer Lion at the Venice Film Festival, JOSE (Dir. Li Cheng) is a rare portrait of gay life in contemporary Guatemala.
In MINDS feature reflections on art, politics and community. A beautiful 16mm portrait of a queer lucha libre wrestler is captured in Cassandro, The Exotico!(Dir. Marie Losier). Making Montgomery Clift (Dir. Robert Clift, Hillary Demmon) trawls through the Hollywood star’s archives in search of the real Monty. TRANSMILITARY (Dir. Gabriel Silverman, Fiona Dawson) follows four soldiers risking dismissal to fight for transgender rights in the US armed forces.
For full details on the BFI Flare: London LGBTQ+ Film Festival , head over to here.
Michael Blyth, BFI Flare’s Senior Programmer says: “At the heart of BFI Flare is a commitment to telling as wide a range of stories as possible, stories which speak to all members of the LGBTQ+ community. One of the many things which makes this year’s programme so exciting, and so vital, is an increased number of films addressing subjects so often overlooked in cinema – such as bisexuality, asexuality or intersex representation – making the 2019 edition one of our most diverse and inclusive yet.”
Tickets go on sale via bfi.org.uk/flare to BFI Patrons, Champions and Members from 25th February and General Public on 28th February.