Top Picks :: Mardi Gras Film Festival 2015

January 27th 2015

Lilting 1

Above: ‘Lilting’

Cinequeers, gather round!

Mardi Gras Film Festival is back with a great selection of queer cinema from all over the globe. The program delivers an excellent selection of colourful, bold and raw glimpses into queer life across all spectrums. Here are FBi’s top films that will turn you on, inform you, reward you and appease your gay, trans and les-longings.



Out in the Night 1

In Out In The Night (above) we hear from the women who were charged with an attack on a man who harassed and sexually threatened a group of four young lesbians. The film tackles misogyny, homophobia and racism in the American justice system.

We see the evolution of roller derby from a niche sport into a social movement with In The Turn, a film centred around a 10 year old transgender girl who was denied the right to join other sports teams due to her gender.

If porn is your thing then check out Peter De Rome: Grandfather of Gay Porn. The documentary celebrates de Rome’s achievements in fusing cinematic art and gay pornography, capturing moments of sexual pleasure and desire in a time when homosexuality was outlawed.

American Vagabond takes us into the lives of queer runaway youth and their search for community in the world’s gay Mecca, San Francisco. The film is essentially a coming of age story of a gay boy growing up in small town America.


Coming of age


Boys is another coming of age story about two teenagers who meet while training for an upcoming national relay championship. A look into a gay teen romance set in the beautiful Dutch woodlands, this film will take you back to all those queer teen feels.



This years festivals boasts some strong Australian queer cinema including the world premiere of Drown, a story of Surf Lifesaving champion, Len, who is threatened by the arrival of younger, fitter and openly gay Phil. Len’s violence and jealousy towards Phil reveals his own confusion about his own identity.



The Circle2

Opening night of the festival is The Circle (above), a Swiss docudrama that tells the story of a schoolteacher and drag entertainer who fall in love in 1940s Zurich. Their meeting occurs through the social network that revolved around the gay publication, The Circle run by a small team who risk their careers and safety to write and distribute the magazine.

Lilting is a romantic tale of a man grieving the loss of his partner, Kai. When reaching out to Kai’s mother who is of Cambodian-Chinese heritage and doesn’t speak a word of English, his relationship with Kai is revealed to his mother for the first time.

Stories of Our Lives is a beautifully shot exploration of queer experience in Kenya. Candid and confronting, the film presents Kenya as a place of sadness and struggle, but also one of hope. Unable to be screened in Kenya due to strict classification laws, it has still been well received worldwide, and a not to be missed film from the festival.



Life Partners 1

Life Partners (above) is a charming story about a co dependent friendship between two women, one gay and one not. It’s a cleverly written observation of two best friends trying to figure out who they are and what they want.

BFFs is the comedy highlight of the festival, two friends are given a weekend away to a couples retreat. The weekend includes intensive workshops with gay and straight couples possibly revealing something they have been denying for years.



Lyle is the psychological thriller of this year’s festival, starring Gaby Hoffmann (Girls) and Ingrid Jungermann (The Slope). A lesbian take on Rosemary’s Baby, the film centres around a mother who loses her first child while she is pregnant with her second and the manic behaviours that then ensues.


WHAT :: FBi Presents Mardi Gras Film Festival 2015
WHEN :: February 19th – March 5th
WHERE :: Event Cinemas, George St Sydney
HOW MUCH :: $19


Are you an FBi supporter? Win free tickets here!



Read more from FBi Radio