VQFF Opens August 15

The 31st Vancouver Queer Film Festival (VQFF) opens this Thursday, August 15th at the Vancouver Playhouse with the Canadian Premiere of Leon Le’s Song Lang (Vietnam/U.S.A.), Le’s first feature is set in the richly imagined and dilapidated streets of 1990’s Saigon. Song Lang is a tribute to the golden age of c?i l??ng (a form of modern Vietnamese folk opera), a queer romance and gangster film that stars Vietnamese popstar, Isaac.

VQFF’s Closing Gala Film is the Canadian Premiere of a positive, feel-good LGBTQ comedy from Italy, An Almost Ordinary Summer (Italy) by Simone Godano. The film pays homage to the entertaining romantic comedies of Nancy Meyers, about two aging patriarchs who bring their two very different families together on vacation to announce their engagement. 

An Almost Ordinary Summer

In between, VQFF welcomes more than 100 films from 27 countries, plus a series of Festival Spotlights including Coming Into Our Own: Youth Spotlight, Queer Kinship, A Higher Power, and projecting brilliance: a two-spirit showcase. 

Curated by Artistic Director, Anoushka Ratnarajah, VQFF is Vancouver’s second largest film festival and the largest queer arts event in Western Canada.  Presented by Out On Screen, the Festival runs August 15-25, 2019 at various venues throughout the city, for more information and tickets visit queerfilmfestival.ca

Picks of the Week – August 15, 2018

Mid-August and the annual smokey overlay above the city is upon us, there’s lots of entertainment to keep you indoors and out of the poor air.

Jericho:  It’s the final weekend of Ensemble Theatre Company Summer Repertory Festival  the trio of plays at Jericho Arts Centre: Dark Road by Ian Rankin, A Few Good Men by Aaron Sorkin & The Beauty Queen of Leenane wraps up August 17th.

Synth: Show a little respect as Erasure takes the stage at The Orpheum Theatre tonight, August 15th.

VQFF Closing Film: The Miseducation of Cameron Post

Festies: The Vancouver Queer Film Festival also wraps up this weekend but not before many more days of world class films.

Laugh:  Visit one of the best patios in Vancouver, the Neil McRae Bar at the Improv Centre on Granville Island and while you’re there get a good laugh a at Vancouver Theatresports League zany improv antics when you check out the fun at Avocado Toast or stay for the late night show WTF – What The Fun!

WhitecapsKicks: Whitecaps FC hope to continue the forward momentum into the playoffs as they host NY Red Bulls on Saturday

Tyrant: Enjoy the August line-up of comedy and jazz at Tyrant Studios Summer Lounge Series: Friday Jazz & The Comic Strip Saturdays

Cabaret: Fabulist Theatre presents Our Time: An Empowerment Cabaret, a celebration of women in stories and songs from the suffragette to the #MeToo movement

Rock: It’s the weekend to Rock Ambleside Park, as it welcomes a bevy of classic rock acts, including Loverboy, Lee Aaron, Trooper, Chilliwack, Nazareth and more on Aug 17, 18, & 19.

PNE: The 2018 Fair at the PNE opens this weekend, this year the Fair celebrates the40th Anniversary of SuperDogs, the Pacific Coliseum’s 50th Anniversary and the 60th Anniversary of the famed Wooden Roller Coaster.

PNE Summer Nights Concerts

Nights: The opening of the PNE also kicks off the Summer Nights Concert Series fan picks between free concerts from Boyz II Men and Air Supply this Saturday and Sunday

Music: The CBC Musical Nooners are back for another year, bringing lunch time music to the outdoor CBC Plaza on Hamilton Street

Dine:  Provence Marinaside’s Tomato Festival picks the best of the summer’s crop and brings it to your plate through the month of August

Resist: Until October 8th at MOA, Arts of Resistance: Politics and the Past in Latin America, invites visitors to take a closer look at the political and social significance of Latin American artistic traditions to express political realities.

Exhibit:  Experience a visit to the cabin and stay indoors, at the Vancouver Art Gallery as Cabin Fever  an exhibit tracing the history of the North American cabin as an architectural form and a cultural construct, on view until September 30, 2018.
As well, David Milne: Modern Painting  on until September 9th, offers highlights of Milne’s half-century career, which took him from New York City, to the battlefields of Northern  France and Belgium, and back to the wilderness of Canada and the US.

Wild: The Museum of Vancouver latest exhibit Wild Things: The Power of Nature in Our Lives, brings the great outdoors, indoors to take a look at the relationship between local plants and animals and the people and places in the city, showing until 2019

TUTS CInderella: Tré Cotten(Topher) & Mallory James(Ella)
photo: Lindsay Elliott

Stars:  Theatre Under The Stars has extended the 2018 season of Rogers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella, and 42ND Street on alternating nights at Malkin Bowl, now closing August 25th.

Bard: Make your picks between a brilliant Beatles themed version of As You Like It,  now extended until September 28, or the dramatic Macbeth on the Mainstage, and find Timon of Athens or Lysistrata on the Howard Family Stage at Bard on the Beach 2018

 

VQFF Opening Gala coming August 9th

The 2018 Vancouver Queer Film Festival (VQFF) kicks off on Thursday August 9th with a 7:00pm screening of Yen Tan’s critically-observed period piece, 1985, at the Vancouver Playhouse.

1985
photo: dutch rall

Director Tan’s fifth feature black & white film, 1985 follows Adrian, a closeted young man returning to his Texas hometown for Christmas during the first wave of the AIDS crisis. Burdened with an unspeakable tragedy in New York, Adrian reconnects with his brother and estranged childhood friend, as he struggles to divulge his dire circumstances to his religious parents. Under Tan’s emotional and poignant direction, 1985’s characters bring tension and a strained tenderness into every scene, creating a haunting elegy for a generation of gay men. 1985 stars Cory Michael Smith (Gotham), Michael Chiklis (The Commish), Virginia Madsen (Designated Survivor), Jamie Chung (The Gifted). Director Yen Tan will be in attendance, at the VQFF Opening Gala to introduce his film, as well as at the repeat screening August 10.

Following the opening screening the Festival really gets going with the Opening Gala Party, taking place under the stars at the šx???ex?n Xwtl’a7shn Plaza (QET Plaza). Attendees are encouraged to dress in black and white finery as an homage to Yen Tan’s stylistic choice for 1985, and will be treated to performances by contortionist Vixen Von Flex and dance troupe Coven, with beats from East Van DJs Body Party.

VQFF, Vancouver’s second largest film festival and the largest queer arts event in Western Canada runs August 9-19 at various venues throughout the city.  More than 70 films from 15 countries are featured at this year’s 30th anniversary Festival, along with 11 visiting filmmakers including guests from India, Philippines, United States, as well as numerous local directors and performing artists, in addition to parties and talkback sessions. The Vancouver Queer Film Festival is presented by Out On Screen, for more information and tickets visit queerfilmfestival.ca

CONTEST: Vancouver Queer Film Fest 2018

The Vancouver Queer Film Festival has released its lineup for the 30th Anniversary edition of the festival, taking place August 9-19.  Over the 11-day festival, more than 70 films from 15 countries will be featured, along with 11 visiting filmmakers, 27 local directors and numerous local performing artists, in addition to parties and talkback sessions & seminars. Festival passes and tickets are now on sale online.

“Our 30th year is the perfect time to reflect on how queer cinema has evolved,” says Co-Artistic Director Amber Dawn. “We now see queer, trans, and two-spirit themed films routinely winning awards and gaining wide viewership. Even with this recognition, there are still so many stories to be told and so many innovative possibilities for media-based storytelling. You’ll only get a chance to see groundbreaking stories like these at festivals like Vancouver Queer Film Festival.”

Curated by Co-Artistic Directors Anoushka Ratnarajah and Amber Dawn, Vancouver Queer Film Festival (VQFF) 2018 opens at the Vancouver Playhouse with Malaysian-born writer and director Yen Tan’s 1985, featuring an acclaimed cast including Cory Michael Smith, Michael Chiklis, Virginia Madsen, and Jamie Chung.

Alaska Is A Drag

This year’s VQFF Centrepiece Gala Film is from LA-based comedian, writer and actress Vivian Bang, who co-wrote and stars in, White Rabbit. In this comedy that premiered at Sundance Film Festival, Vivian Bang plays a Korean-American performance artist who tries to remain dedicated to her art and struggles to pay the bills by doing odd jobs on “TaskRabbit”.  The 2018 Youth Gala Film is Shaz Bennett’s debut feature film, Alaska Is A Drag, a

fish out of water story about life in a small Alaska cannery town.

Festival favourites The Coast is Queer and Troublemakers return, and new this year is The Coast is Genderqueer – VQFF’s first short film program that showcases local transgender, genderfluid, and non-binary stories. As well, Festival Programmer Justin Ducharme curates Indigiqueer Shorts from Turtle Island and Aotearoa, a collection of two-spirit films that subvert colonial constructs of Indigiqueer bodies and sexual agency.

The Miseducation of Cameron Post

VQFF 2018 wraps up August 19th, with the Closing Gala Film The Miseducation of Cameron Post, the sophomore feature from Desiree Akhavan and 2018 Grand Jury Prize for U.S. Drama at Sundance Film Festival.  Based on the novel of the same name and set in the early ‘90s, the film follows high school senior Cameron Post, who is caught in a small-town scandal when she’s discovered having a secret relationship with her best friend. Deemed a sinner, Cameron is sent by her conservative aunt and guardian to a Christian conversion therapy camp called ‘Promises’.

Festival program guides are now available at Festival venues as well as Little Sister’s Book & Art Emporium and Black Dog Video. The complete Festival lineup can also be viewed online at www.queerfilmfestival.ca.

Full ticketing details, including pricing, can be found at www.queerfilmfestival.ca/tickets.

CONTEST:
Vancouver Queer Film Festival has graciously offered a lucky reader, a 6 pack of tickets for your oppertunity to attend Vancouver’s second largest film festival

To enter:

Leave a comment below telling us the person who you would take along with you to be your VQFF #Festie  (1 entry)

Tweet the Following & Tag your #Festie (1 entry) :

RT to #Win : Me & my #festie want to win tickets to @QueerFilmFest via @jminter http://ow.ly/hMOk30kPedM #VQFF2018 #contest

Contest entries will be accepted until Noon on Monday July 30, 2018. One winner will be chosen at random.

Out On Screen Celebrates VQFF’s 30th Birthday

This summer, Out On Screen presents the 30th annual Vancouver Queer Film Festival (VQFF), Thursday, August 9th to Sunday, August 19th. This year’s Festival, presented by RBC, will take place at various theatres around Vancouver.  The 2018 Festival theme is “To the moon and back, 30 years of uplifting queer stories

To kick off the 30th Anniversary celebrations Out on Screen is hosting a community birthday party, sponsored by Vancity, on Saturday, June 2nd at The Imperial on Main Street at 8:00pm. The party for the LGBT2Q+ community and allies will pay tribute to the last three decades of uplifting queer stories at the Vancouver Queer Film Festival. The Festival gets nostalgic and will be turning back time to dance the night away to hits from the 80’s, 90’s and 2000’s, and enjoy performances inspired by each decade from talented local artists Maiden China, Shay Dior, and Indigenous burlesque troupe Virago Nation.

“The value of queer film as a transformational art medium is just as critical today as it was 30 years ago,” says Executive Director Stephanie Goodwin. “The Festival is a place for the LGBT2Q+ community to call home as well as an important platform for films that queer the narrative, that illuminate and celebrate LGBT2Q+ lives in all their dimensions and complexity.”

“2018 has proven to be an incredible year for queer cinema, breaking out of familiar stories and into mainstream box office success,” adds Co-Artistic Director Anoushka Ratnarajah. “We are seeing queer filmmakers taking aesthetic and narrative risks, creating art that pushes boundaries, and takes audiences into new queer territories. I feel very fortunate to be witnessing the artistry, intelligence, and courage of queer film today.”

Celebrating the best in independent queer cinema, the Vancouver Queer Film Festival is Vancouver’s second largest film festival and the largest queer arts event in Western Canada. For the full line-up of the VQFF films, classes, lectures, panels and more visit queerfilmfestival.ca

Vancouver Queer Film Fest wraps for 2017

Sunday night, the 2017 Vancouver Queer Film Festival came to a close with a Gala party at The Junction following the closing film screening of Handsome Devil at Vancouver Playhouse.

“Our Vancouver Queer Film Festival not only showcased cutting edge queer film, it also gave our audiences all the best feels,” said Executive Director, Stephanie Goodwin. “We laughed. We cried. We got angry. And we loved. We forefronted stories that are underrepresented, yet have the power to transform lives.”

With thousands attending the 70+ films, talks and events spread around the city’s venues over the 11 day festival, there was plenty for the jury and audience to choose from in selecting the 2017 Vancouver Queer Film Festival Awards.

The trio of awards were presented at the Closing Gala to the following films and directors:

Gerry Brunet Memorial Award for Best BC Short ($2500 prize)

Supported by Su Craik and Lisa Heddema and Directors Guild of Canada-BC, the annual juried prize for the Vancouver Queer Film Festival’s best BC short film was established in 1997 in recognition of Gerry Brunet, a lifelong contributor to the arts and an early board member of Out On Screen.

 

 

Winner: Violet & June directed by Linnea Ritland
Honourable Mention: Stay Gold, Man Up directed by Ray McEachern

OUTTVGO People’s Choice Award for Best Feature ($750 prize)

Voted on by patrons of the Vancouver Queer Film Festival

Winner: Maybe Tomorrow (Baba Bukas) directed by Samantha Lee

 

OUTTVGO People’s Choice Award for Best Short ($500 prize)

Voted on by patrons of the Vancouver Queer Film Festival

Winner: Do I Have Boobs Now? directed by Joella Cabalu & Milena Salazar

If you missed the 2017 Vancouver Queer Film Festival work is starting now for the 2018 edition so keep your eyes on the screens for information about next year’s Festival.

 

Vancouver Queer Film Festival starts August 10, 2017

Vancouver Queer Film Festival (VQFF), the city’s second largest film fest gets under way in one week.  Running August 10 to 20, 2017, VQFF brings 11 days of award winning films, talkbacks, performances and parties.

I Dream In Another Language

The Festival opens at the Vancouver Playhouse with the 2017 Sundance Award-winning film, I Dream in Another Language (Sueño en Otro Idioma). Following the screening the Festival’s Opening Gala Party, a celebration under the stars at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre Plaza.

The VQFF Artist in Residence for 2017 is the prolific and multi-talented Vivek Shraya. The filmmaker, visual artist, musician, and author will spend the Festival’s opening weekend with audiences at events featuring a breadth of work from her diverse portfolio.

VQFF Artistic Directors Amber Dawn & Anoushka Ratnarajah

“We’re thrilled to be bringing audiences and artists together for once in a lifetime connections at our Festival,” said Artistic Directors Anoushka Ratnarajah and Amber Dawn. “The caliber of talent and diverse perspectives of our visiting and local filmmakers are sure to challenge and delight our highly intelligent and invested audiences. We look forward to the time we will share together.”

 


Some of the artists in attendance at VQFF include;

Taxi Stories

– Doris Yeung, writer, director and executive producer of Taxi Stories, the most ambitious film of the Festival, filmed in three countries and featuring a mostly non-actor cast.
– Philippines filmmaker Samantha Lee, whose film, Maybe Tomorrow (Baka Bukas), won the Audience Choice Award at the Cinema One Originals Festival in Manila.
– New York City poet and author, t’ai freedom ford, whose work is featured in The Revival: Women and the Word.
– Pakistani-Canadian film and television actress, writer and producer, Fawzia Mirza, for the screening of Signature Move.
– Emerging filmmaker Francis Luta, will speak with audiences after his film Project Gelb.
– Award-winning writer, playwright, performer and filmmaker, Steen Starr, whose short documentary Older than What? tells the story of twelve queer and trans elders responding to ten questions about aging, visibility, and social change.

One of the festival’s fan favourite events, The Coast is Queer, an evening dedicated to local talent, will screen on Friday, August 18 at the York Theatre. Featuring nine stellar short films from some of BC’s most standout emerging and established filmmakers, our annual local programming covers documentaries, romance, fantasy, and drama.

Handsome Devil

The Festival closes August 20th at the Vancouver Playhouse with the Closing Gala screening of 2016 Dublin Film Critics Circle Award winner Handsome Devil by Irish director John Butler.  Following the  screening the annual Closing Party at The Junction wraps another VQFF.

For full Vancouver Queer Film Festival line-up and tickets visit queerfilmfestival.com