- The Queer Film Festival has introduced the 20th edition's program with the theme of “Wind of Change”.
- The opening film will be director Rhys Ernst's debut, Adam.
- Other films selected for the main feature film competition include for example the Oscar-nominated Swedish-Georgian drama, And Then We Danced, and the Teddy Award-winning quirky Brazilian road movie, Brief Story from the Green Planet (Breve historia del planeta verde).
This year, Mezipatra will present ten feature films in the main competition, five documentaries, 39 short competition films, five films in the special retro section called Reunion, and also 17 short films from last year's competition that are already on Czech Television's website. The opening film of the festival's 20th edition will be Adam, a coming-of-age comedy by the American director Rhys Ernst. With authenticity and humour, this feature debut discusses the importance of friendship and mutual tolerance not only within the queer community.
”Each year, we try to explore as many trends and tendencies of contemporary queer cinema as possible,” says Mezipatra's Program Director, Sandra Hezinová. “The final program thus brings a comprehensive presentation of the most interesting things in the festival world. It is worth noting that this year's selection is refreshingly young, as the main competition introduces first feature films by nine directors.”
Latin American cinema in the competition is represented by as many as three films. Lucio Castro's The End of the Century (Fin de siglo) focuses on a pair that realizes after a passionate day that their paths may have crossed before. This sincere account of long-term relationships and the treacherous human memory won the main award at the Frameline festival in San Francisco. Greta (dir. Armando Praça) is a drama that will take us to Brazil, the home of the ageing nurse Pedro. When he decides to hide an injured man one night, his life turns upside down. The film was successfully presented in Panorama at this year's Berlinale. A Berlinale-winner is Santiago Loza's Brief Story from a Green Planet (Breve historia del planeta verde) about three friends whose perception of the world changes when they set off to fulfill the last wish of the grandmother of one of them.
An insight into the conservative world of traditional Georgian dance will be offered by And Then We Danced, where the strict rules of the dance and the rigid society influence the life of a hard-training boy whose dream is to perform abroad. Levan Akin's sincere, emotionally raw drama won the Best Film Award at Odessa IFF and Best Director Award at Sarajevo IFF.
A society based on traditional thinking is also the topic of A Dog Barking at the Moon (Zai jian nan ping wan zhong), about pregnant Xiaoyu who returns from the USA to China to introduce her husband to her parents. But the place she's come to isn't home anymore. In her original debut that won this year's Special Mention at Teddy Awards, director Lisa Zi Xiang presents a conflict between a traditional and modern family, and culture and faith.
The protagonist of the Austrian drama The Ground Beneath My Feet (Der Boden unter den Füssen) is Lola, a young woman whose career starts to crumble when her sick sister Conny starts emerging like a ghost of her perfect life. One of today's most prominent Austrian filmmakers, Marie Kreutzer, has made a captivating psychological thriller that toys with the audience just as cleverly as life toys with the main protagonist.
Viktoria from Psychosia also puts career first. She has dedicated everything to scientific research of suicides. But that changes when her work takes her to a psychiatric ward, the residence of an uncontrollable patient named Jenny. Marie Grahtø's Gothic horror premiered at Venice IFF as a part of the International Critics' Week.
Apart from Adam, American indie cinema is represented by two more films by talented young filmmakers. Martha Stephens's To the Stars is a period coming-of-age story featuring shy Iris and confident Maggie. They live in the USA in the 1960s, bound by gender-based traditions. The USA are also the setting of Daniella Lessovitz's love drama, Port Authority, about the African-American queer community that loves voguing. And lonely Paul falls head over heels with one of the dancers in this community that proudly celebrates diversity. This sensual film with excellent, authentic acting was introduced at this year's Cannes.
QFF Mezipatra 2019
Praha 7. – 14. 11.
Brno 15. – 22. 11.
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