Wednesday, 15 October 2014 16:43

Daily Highlights: Day Six of the Fest! Featured

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We're just past the halfway mark of the 12th annual Southwest Gay and Lesbian Film Festival, but some of the best films are yet to come! Starting at 6:30, we've got two films that focus on the 'B' and 'T' in LGBT!


DATE: Oct 15, 2014
RUN TIME: 86 minutes

Shirin (Desiree Akhavan) would like to think of herself as an unrepentant bisexual with bold creative ambitions. Except — she won't share anything about her love life with her traditional Persian-American family. This reticence ended up dissolving Shirin's relationship with her first love and long-time girlfriend, Maxine (Rebecca Henderson). While together, they were the 'It Couple' of Park Slope. Now, Shirin's slid from the heights of a Park Slope Life to a cramped flat in Bushwick and a dead-end job teaching film school to 6-year olds. After her brother announces his engagement to a parentally-approved Iranian girl, Shirin embarks on a passive-aggressive course of retaliatory pan-sexual conquests!

This debut feature is a tart-tongued, borough-set twist on Woody Allen's "Annie Hall," shuttling back-and-forth between Shirin's memories of her life with Maxine and her hilariously raw and misguided rebound attempts. Rolling Stone deemed the film's writer-director-star an "unholy cross between Fran Lebowitz, Junot Diaz, Tina Fey and Hanif Kureishi." But Akhavan is her own talent. This film presents very personal and heartfelt moments facing a woman whose ethnic identity and sexuality straddle the borderlines. Shirin's attempts to evolve beyond her broken heart make for a drolly unique romantic comedy. This is a great opportunity to catch the start of Desiree Akhavan's sure-to-be brilliant career.

Sponsored by: filmcollaborative


DATE: Oct 15, 2014
RUN TIME: 95 minutes

Ricky, a 21-year old trans girl, wants to leave Kentucky for the NYC fashion life -- until she befriends Francesca, a married woman whose military husband (stationed overseas) knew Ricky pre-transition; he makes his dislike very clear. Ricky's best friend, Robby (Michael Welch), also grows jealous over the new arrival. The unlikely relationship that develops between Ricky and Francesca presents pressing questions that each must answer about identity and determination. Heat and heartache abound in this winning rom-com about complicated desires. Michelle Hendley is a trans actress selected to play Ricky after a nation-wide casting call. She worked with the director to ensure an honest portrayal of trans issues, and she has a wonderful way of delivering moments that combine humor, heartache, and hopefulness with great candor.

Writer/director Eric Schaeffer's forward-thinking story is meant for anyone who's felt misunderstood or trapped – whether by a small town, another person's expectations, or by the tales we tell ourselves. The Kentucky setting is a welcome change; it depicts a place both cozy and claustrophobic, where everyone knows your name — and your past, and more than likely, all of your sexual partners. The film focuses on a fluid representation of love and gender, and it stays refreshingly sex-positive — something rarely seen in the movies. As Ricky explains when asked about what these desires make someone: "It makes you human."

Sponsored by: prideguide


See the full film schedule at All screenings will be at the Guild Cinema located at 3405 Central Ave SW. Tickets, punch cards and full festival passes can be purchased online from our website, our advance ticket outlet at Self-Serve located at 3904B Central SE, and our venue box office, The Guild Cinema on the day-of show.

The 12th Annual Southwest Gay and Lesbian Film Festival is sponsored in part by New Mexico Arts, a division of the Department of Cultural Affairs, and the National Endowment for the Arts, Bernalillo County, UNM Truman Health Services, ABQ Film Office and Comcast Xfinity.

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