Thursday, October 20, 2011

image+nation 24 announces 2011 festival programming

The Montreal International LGBT Film Festival known as image+nation is the oldest of its kind in Canada and they've just unveiled their programming for their 24th edition. They will be screening over 125 films over the course of the 12-day festival.

To open the festival, Tova Magnusson-Nörling's Swedish Comedy Fyra år till (Four More Years) will play at the Cinéma Impérial. The festival closes at Theatre Hall Concordia with Canadian filmmaker Sheldon Larry's musical Leave It On The Floor.

Other films to look out for include Codependent Lesbian Space Alien Seeks Same which just picked up a Gotham Award nomination; Ausente (Absent) which won the Teddy Award at the 2011 Berlin Film Festival; and Circumstance by Maryam Kershavarz which won the Audience Award at the Sundance Film Festival.

image+nation 24 runs from October 26 to November 6

image+nation 24: Montreal International LGBT Film Festival
“Share Your Stories with the Ones You Love”
From October 26 to November 6, 2011
Unveiling of the 2011 PROGRAM

Montreal, October 20, 2011
image+nation, the oldest LGBT film festival in Canada, is proud to unveil the programming of its 24th edition, which will take place from October 26 to November 6, 2011. Over 125 shorts, documentaries and feature films have been thoughtfully selected to represent multiple voices and perspectives, to document social struggles and gains, and to share the richness and the secrets of other cultures. Bringing together the best queer titles of the past year, image+nation aims to quench the thirst of gay film buffs and wider audiences alike. This is why the Festival encourages the LGBT community to bring along their loved ones - whether they be family, friends, work colleagues or fellow cinephiles to share in the visual pleasures with them. Plenty of stories to share will be showcased within the framework of this colourful 24th edition.

On Wednesday, October 26, at 8:00 PM at the Cinema Imperial (1432 Bleury), image+nation will launch its 24th edition with Four More Years, a delightful Swedish comedy by director Tova Magnusson-Nörling. In the midst of political rivalry, David Holst (Björn Kjellman), an ambitious politician, has his life turned upside down the day he meets the freshly minted Minister of State for the opposition Socialist Party, Martin (Eric Ericsson). One day, the impossible happens: a friendly debate between the two men erupts into a first kiss. This highly entertaining romantic comedy then ventures into the complexities of an orchestrated world where personal development flies in the face of the protecting one's public image. William Berhman’s crisply baked scenario is supported by Ericsson’s and Kjellman’s easy on-screen chemistry, while Mauro Scocco’s bubbly score keeps pace with the action. A mature rom-com laced with sparkling political satire, Four More Years sweetly redefines what it means to be "bipartisan".

On Sunday, November 6 at 8:30 PM at the Theatre Hall Concordia (1455 Maisonneuve W.), image+nation will cap off 11 days of exceptional cinema with Leave It On The Floor, a musical comedy directed by Sheldon Larry. Destined to become a cult classic, Leave it on the floor had its Canadian premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival, where the film literally rocked the crowds. The story follows remarkably handsome Brad (Ephraim Sykes) who, after being kicked out on the street by his homophobic mother, stumbles into the L.A. ball scene – the exact same scene that inspired Madonna and was admirably depicted by Jennie Livingston’s classic documentary Paris is Burning, screening this year at image+nation in a special 20
th anniversary presentation. Leave it on the Floor is an unforgettable urban musical, its score weighted with the emotional honesty of Hedwig and the Angry Inch and the break-out-singing bravado of Glee. Adding some romance, a dramatic love triangle, and a nod to Justin Timberlake and Lady Gaga, director Sheldon Larry and writer Glenn Gaylord mix the musical genre with vogue culture to create a fabulous tale of empowerment.


image+nation 24
is filled with innovative films that have been praised by critics around the globe.
Awarded the Teddy prize at the last Berlinale for best LGBT film, AUSENTE (ABSENT), by Argentinean director Marco Berger (Plan B, Image+nation 2010) is a psychological drama that Hitchcock wouldn’t have denied, involving a teenager getting dangerously too close to his school swim teacher.

A grand and poetic film reminding us of the work of Terrence Malick, the enchanting historical drama and first feature film by Vardis Marinakis, BLACK FIELD, takes place in 1654, where a young androgynous girl reveals her terrible secret to the wounded soldier she treats.

After an impressive debut at Sundance, CODEPENDENT LESBIAN SPACE ALIEN SEEKS SAME, an engaging comedy shot in black and white by Madeleine Olnek, offers a fascinating tribute to sci-fi B movies filled with incredibly smart dialogue and a surprisingly piercing message.

Those who enjoy twisted plots and atypical characters will also not want to miss JOE & BELLE, a dark, sophisticated comedy by Veronica Kedar, an Israeli Thelma & Louise following the journey of two outcasts on the run to Tel-Aviv.

Winner of the Audience Award at Sundance in 2011,
CIRCUMSTANCE, by Maryam Kershavarz depicts Iran as it has rarely been seen on North American screens through the love story of two teenage girls in a society that disapproves of homosexuality, using the story to speak of a contemporary culture at odds with its past and its present. 

Also acclaimed at Sundance (where it was hailed as one of the best independent film of the year), WEEKEND – written, edited and directed by Andrew Haigh – portrays the lives of gay men with a sense of authenticity and an eye for details that reminds us of the works of Cassavetes and Mike Leigh.

Considered by many as the sexiest film presented at Frameline this year, AUGUST, the first feature film by Edlar Rapaport, works half way between Rashomon and Memento to explore the complexity of a love triangle from the points of view of its three main characters.

The ninth feature film by Gaël Morel, NOTRE PARADIS is a fascinating synthesis of Avant que j’oublie and Bonnie & Clyde, telling the misadventures of two male prostitutes on their tumultuous road towards a lost paradise.

A lesbian couple steals the show in WALKING TOWARDS (CAMMINANDO VERSO), by Roberto Cuzzilo, an intimate and haunting portrait of how global conflicts affect personal relationships. 

A film that everyone will be pleased to discover is MI ÚLTIMO ROUND (MY LAST ROUND), the fourth feature film from Chilean director Julio Jorquera, posing a sensitive look at the notion of masculinity and the difficulties of living in secrecy.

, by Dutch director Simon Sliphorst, is a hybrid between Babette’s Feast and Death in Venice, describing an intergenerational love and the power to change life even in older age. 

Nominated for the Grand Jury Prize at Sundance, Gun Hill Road, by filmmaker Rashaad Ernesto Green explores the tensions between a father recently
released from prison and his transgendered child, struggling herself to live an authentic life as her chosen identity.

Finally, as film history has repeatedly shown, it happens that some films benefit from a lower budget to increase their inventiveness. This is particularly true for BREAK MY FALL, by Kanchi Wichmann, HARVEST, by German filmmaker Benjamin Cantu, BUMBLEFUCK, USA, by Aaron Douglas Johnson, and LES FRAISES DES BOIS, by Dominique Choisy. 

image+nation 24
offers a wide range of films that are distinguished by the strength of their story and of their portrayal of LGBT experiences and themes.

From the UK, three cinematographic adaptations of gay literature classics offer festival-goers a chance to travel back in time: THE NIGHT WATCH, directed by Richard Laxton and from the novel by same name by Sarah Waters, CHRISTOPHER & HIS KIND, by Geoffrey Sax (based on the writings of Christopher Isherwood), and DAPHNE by Clare Beavan, based on the life of novelist, Daphne du Maurier. With intelligence and sensitivity, two films revisit the theme of coming out: THE GUIDE (O XENAGOS), by Greek director Zacharias Mavroeidis, and KAWA, Katie Wood’s adaptation of a novel by Witi Ihimaera ("Whale Rider"). The singular life of certain gay groups is depicted in SHAHADA, by Burhan Qurbani, BUFFERING by Darren Flaxstone, KINK CRUSADERS, by Michael Skiff and RENT BOYS, by Rosa von Praunheim (QUEENS DON’T CRY).

The U.S. offers up some stunning feature films this year: LONGHORNS, by Davis Lewis, AU PAIR, KANSAS, by JT O’Neal’s, MAN 2 MAN: A GAY MAN’S GUIDE TO FINDING LOVE, by Christopher Hines, EATING OUT: THE OPEN WEEKEND, by Q. Allan Brocka, GOING DOWN IN LA-LA LAND by Casper Andreas and JUDAS KISS, by J.T. Tepnapa. And last but certainly not least, from Canada, EVERYTHING AND EVERYONE, by Canadian filmmaker, Tracy D. Smith.

For the ladies, image+nation’s offerings are again impressive this year: TOMBOY, by Céline Sciamma, LA ROBE DU SOIR, by Myriam Aziza, LIP SERVICE (The British version of the L Word), SO HARD TO FORGET (COMO ESQUECER), by Brazilian filmmaker Malu de Martino, LA FILLE DE MONTRÉAL, by Montréal's own, Jeanne Crépeau, and CLOUDBURST by Thom Fitzgerald (The Hanging Garden), featuring amazing performances by Olympia Dukakis and Brenda Fricker.

The Festival would of course be incomplete without breathtaking musicals: MARY LOU, by Eytan Fox (YOSSI & JAGGER, The Bubble), JAMIE AND JESSIE ARE NOT TOGETHER, by Wendy Jo Carlton (HANNAH FREE), and WHAT’S THE NAME OF THE DAME? by Allan Neuwirth.

Paying homage to maverick artists and activists that have helped mould and define our contemporary queer culture, image+nation 24's Vanguard Series gives festival goers the chance to discover the impressive life and career of Bruce LaBruce in The Avocate for Fagdom by Angeline Bosio; of Vito Russo in Vito by Jeffrey Schwarz; of Robert Opel in Uncle Bob; and of Yves Saint Laurent in L’AMOUR FOU by Pierre Thoretton.

’s documentaries this year look at the "new" Old World - offering up keen observations on the status of homosexuality in traditionally non-accepting cultures around the world with I Am by Sonali Gulati, East Bloc Love by Logan Mucha, and Not Quite the Taliban by Fadi Hindash, and closer to home, from the U.S., Wish Me Away by Bobbie Birleffi and Beverly Kopf.

The challenges facing an aging and elderly LGBT population are also explored in this year's documentaries Gen Silent by Stu Maddux, Margaret & Evergon by Donald Winkler and There’s no Hole In My Head by Alison Seger.

Finally, the Festival also showcases a series of documentaries that explore the gray areas of sexual orientation and identity through: Orchids: My Intersex Adventure by Phoebe Hart, (A)Sexual by Angela Tucker and BISEXUALITÉ: Territoires secrets by Suzanne Guy.

Again this year, the Festival presents some wonderful collections of short films from around the globe including the programs: Lesbomundo, Homomundo, Queerement Quebec, A Girl’s Life, A Boy’s Life, Manhunt and Generation Q.

Recognizing the 30 th anniversary of HIV/AIDS, film critic, author and lecturer Matthew Hays will deliver a talk chronicling the onscreen history of the epidemic. Adding to this focus, image+nation presents WE WERE HERE, a clear-eyed, concise chronicle of the AIDS crisis, in San Francisco specifically. Presented at Sundance in 2011, this documentary by David Weissman relies on detailed and intimate testimonies to render in human terms, a near-unimaginable tragedy.

In addition to a full roster of contemporary titles, image + nation this year pays tribute to a gay icon who passed away in 2011. CAT ON A HOT TIN ROOF (1958) and REFLECTIONS IN A GOLDEN EYE (1967) will be projected on the big screen in honor of the prolific Hollywood star, Elizabeth Taylor.

image+nation 24 offers a chance to dip back into queer cinema history with a retrospective screening of the seminal documentary, Paris is Burning. Between 1987 and 1989, director Jennie Livingston documented the lives of gay and trans performers - mostly black or Latino - who compete in New York City’s balls and dream of achieving celebrity status. Before Madonna, before Glee, there was Paris is Burning.

With a rich and varied roster of films for every taste and every cinematic inclination, image+nation 24 invites all to share these stories with the ones you love.


TICKET PRESALES: Café Java U Village
(1259, St. Catherine E.  / metro Beaudry)
October 21 & 24 _5 – 8 p.m.
October 22 & 23 _3 – 8 p.m.

During the Festival, the main box office for all tickets is at Theatre Hall Concordia and opens 45 minutes before the first screening of the day. Tickets can also be purchased online at: 

TICKETS:  Single tickets: $11.50; movie buff pass 10@$95; students and seniors (65+): $8

The 24th edition of image+nation will take place at the following venues: Cinéma Impérial  (1432 Bleury), Theatre Hall Concordia (1455 Maisonneuve W.), JA de Sève Theatre (1400 Maisonneuve W.), and Goethe-Institut (418 Sherbrooke E).

For a complete schedule and to purchase tickets, please visit:
For the online catalogue: 

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