Right as the curtains are falling on another São Paulo International Film Festival (the ‘Mostra’), movie buffs and champions of the arts alike are about to turn their attention to the Festival Mix Brasil de Cultura da Diversidade (Mix Brasil Festival of Cultural Diversity), which will feature 36 LGBT-themed attractions – including theatre, performance, dance and karaoke – and over 140 LGBT-themed films in this, its 21st and largest edition to date.
This year’s edition of Latin America’s largest LGBT festival will opens its film programme with the controversial Interior. Leather Bar. – a graphic re-creation of the mythological 40 minutes of gay S&M footage which was allegedly cut from the borderline pornographic film, Cruising (1980), starring Al Pacino. The film was co-directed by the actor and gay rights activist, James Franco, and the director, Travis Matthews, whose work – which includes I Want Your Love (2012) and the In The Room series – will be featured throughout the event.
Other highlights include 2013’s Queer Palm winner, the French film, L’inconnu du Lac (A Stranger by the Lake), and the festival’s own version of the Gong Show, ‘O Show do Gongo’ (12 November), where films of up to 5 minutes’ length are shown to an audience that, gladiator style, has the power to decide whether the film should be shown in its entirety.
The festival takes place at several venues across the city, including CCSP, CineSESC and Espaço Itaú de Cinema. As an added bonus, when you go to buy your tickets for one of the paid films, just tell the seller, ‘sou gay’ (‘I’m gay’) or ‘sou simpatizante’ (‘I’m gay-friendly’), and you’ll pay half-price admission.