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Melbourne Queer Film Festival

Film, Film festivals Around Melbourne , Melbourne Thursday March 14 2019 - Monday March 25 2019
Daddy Issues MQFF
Photograph: Supplied Daddy Issues

Australia's longest running LGBTQIA film festival returns with a strong lineup of queer stories

For its 29th edition the Melbourne Queer Film Festival will present more than 140 features, documentaries and shorts, including 9 Australian premieres, 28 Melbourne premieres and one restored classic feature.

Opening night film Papi Chulo from Irish director John Butler (Handsome Devil) is a romantic comedy in which an LA weatherman forced to take extended leave forms an unlikely alliance with a Mexican migrant worker. Closing night is the highly anticipated Jeremiah Terminator LeRoy starring Kristin Stewart as the androgynous Savannah Knoop, who spent six years pretending to be the celebrated male author JT LeRoy, the made-up literary persona of her sister-in-law Laura Albert (Laura Dern).

Sure to be the talk of the festival is Knife+Heart, a lurid story of murder and pornography starring Vanessa Paradis in an acclaimed performance as a lesbian producer of gay porn.

Gay icon Rupert Everett stunned critics with his triple-threat effort writing, directing and starring as Oscar Wilde in The Happy Prince, his account of the last days of the Irish playwright's tumultuous life. 

Fans of the podcast You Must Remember This will love Scotty and Secret History of Hollywood, the memoirs of Hollywood gigolo and pimp Scotty Bowers, 95, who serviced both men and women during the 1950s and beyond. In that vein, a new doco on famously closeted Hollywood star, Making Montgomery Clift, will screen.

There’s also a fiery lesbian romance Eva and Candela from Colombia; a feminist retelling of the life of poet Emily Dickinson in Wild Nights with Emily; and a colourful love triangle between a queer artist, a fashion designer and her sugar daddy in Daddy Issues.

Rafiki is from Kenya – a tender lesbian love story that has sadly been banned in its own country. Former Doctor Who and star of The Crown, Matt Smith, takes on the role of the great photographer Robert Mapplethorpe, whose beautiful and frequently erotic photographic portraits stunned the art world before his untimely death and beyond, in the biopic Mapplethorpe.

The 1985 movie Buddies was the first full-length film to deal with the AIDS crisis and will screen in digital restoration. It concerns a volunteer ‘buddy’ assigned to an AIDS patient abandoned by his friends and lovers. French film Sauvage portrays the world of male sex workers and stars the poster child of French queer cinema, Flix Maritaud. 

As always the festival has a strong program of short films. This year sees the introduction of Queer First Nations Shorts – a session of three short films celebrating queer Indigenous people by shining a spotlight on individuals who are changing the landscape of contemporary music and comedy.

Screenings take place at Village Cinemas Jam Factory, ACMI and Cinema Nova.

Venue name: Around Melbourne
Address: Around Melbourne
Event phone: 03 9662 4147
Event website:
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