Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Fun in Girls' Shorts (2008)

Saturday, June 21, 1:30 pm, Castro Theatre
Sunday, June 29, 11:30 am, Castro Theatre

Once again this year, the Girls have hands-down the better "Fun in Shorts" program at Frameline. All you gay boys who are thinking, "Ooh! Ick! Cooties!!" are really missing out.

Happenstance: (see my full review from Toronto last month). Ne'er-do-well son brings his new(est) girlfriend to meet his parents. Mom is strangely flustered, starting the drama rolling. Well made and thoroughly enjoyable, hoping for a planned feature-length version. Highly recommended

Pitstop: A station wagon full of kids pulls up to an isolated gas station in the middle of the Arizona desert. The kids burst forth and bustle noisily about, queueing for the one restroom. Young Margaret (Shawnna Youngquist) finally gets her turn, taking the opportunity for a moment of quiet and also taking a few photos of her surroundings. Her family drives off without her, leaving her for a few minutes to chat with June (Andrea Helene), the proprietor of the station, who shows Margaret some of her leatherwork and gives her a memento of their conversation about art and life. Touching, a real gem. MUST SEE

Duck Soup: "I love duck soup, but I love you more." The woman hearing those words finds byzantine depth in their hidden meanings. Highly recommended

The Touch: Based on the true story of the 1904 romance between Renée Vivien and Karimé, a married Muslim woman. Sensuous and passionate, but sometimes tries a bit too hard at the affectation of being a "period piece." Recommended

Benni Has 2 Mothers: South Africa, for so long defiantly stuck in a backwards-facing world with apartheid and other human rights abuses, has moved to the vanguard, joining the handful of countries (plus Mass. and Calif.!) giving legal recognition to same-sex marriages. This short examines the ripples in the life of Benni as his mum and his "Auntie Anne" get married. On the school playground, Benni learns who his true friends are. Well done, highly recommended

The Premiere: an older woman travels from her small coastal town to the big city to attend the opening night of an opera recital by a former neighbor, and reconnects with an old friend. Beautifully filmed, highly recommended

Pages of a Girl (Páginas de Menina): The setting is a bookstore in Brazil in 1955, but the basic archetype is "librarian." Silvia, the store manager, takes an interest in her young apprentice as they bond over more than a shared love of literature. Sensual and brimming with passion boiling insistently to the surface. MUST SEE

How Do I?: "It ain't a crime, but you try to hide it — what's the use?" Silly and cute, but with a strong message of affirmation, a Valentine to young lesbians (and gay boys) working up the nerve to tell their parents. MUST SEE

Donkey Girl: Farouzi, an adolescent girl, wonders, "Where do the fish pee?" As she stands cleaning fish with her two obnoxious little brothers, a stranger passes by on a motor scooter, spreading flower petals along the way. Farouzi jumps on her donkey to give chase, catching up with the other girl at the pier. Evocative of Farouzi's dreams that seem so close and yet so far out of reach. Highly recommended

No Bikini: no screener copy, no review. Sounds promising. (Sure enough, it won "best short" in the festival.)

"Fun in Girls' Shorts"

Happenstance, dir. Joyce Draganosky, 2007 USA 8 min.
Pitstop, dir Melanie McGraw, 2007 USA 15 min.
Duck Soup, dir. Kathryn Goldie, 2007 Australia 4 min.
The Touch, dir. Jane Clark, 2007 USA 8 min.
Benni Has 2 Mothers, dir. Vivid Tjipura, 2007 South Africa 10 min.
The Premiere, dir. Margret Bergheim, 2006 Norway 9 min.
Pages of a Girl (Páginas de Menina), dir. Monica Palazzo, 2008 Brazil 20 min., in Portuguese with English subtitles
How Do I Say This? I'm Gay! dir. Michael Bodie and Silas Howard, 2007 USA 5 min.
Donkey Girl, dir. Ties Schenu, 2006 Netherlands 14 min., in Dutch, Arabic, and French with English subtitles
No Bikini, dir. Claudia Morgado Escanilla, 2007 Canada 9 min.

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1 comment:

  1. Thanks for this! I missed this program, but am going to see it this weekend!