I had the opportunity to volunteer at the QWOCMAP’s 7th Film festival this past weekend. A festival that welcomes filmmakers to talk about queer love, life, romance, sex, relationships, and several other things that affects us for being just us. And, this year’s Film Festival featured 35+ short films categorized into distinct themes with one panel discussion.
One of the reasons I find myself returning to volunteer for QWOCMAP is the wonderful space these folks have created and the honor of working with such a dedicated and passionate team. One finds a sense of community the moment you walk in. Looking at such a diverse culture and racial mix of folks sharing their queer perspectives, makes me cherish my own Indian heritage a lot better. And though the focus of the movies is about Women of color, the festival by itself is an inclusive event and we invite anyone and everyone to come, watch films by people like you and me that offers the daily narrative of our individual lives. While this year’s movies were predominantly on sexuality there were some that did touch upon gender identity. And, before my ever aging memory gets the better of me, here is a snapshot of the ones I could remember:
Rania’s kitchen – A queer woman’s perspective on multicultural influences since childhood, travel and the importance of food in all that.
Cooking Curiosities – A humorous take on bi and homosexuality based on a conversation between a Latina and her accepting mom.
Bus Pass – 2 women in San Francisco Muni exchange glances and the tension that ensues before the train reaches the next station. A really hilarious narrative and so well made. This was one of my favorite ones of this year!
Toothbrush – a humorous film about the sense of self for a genderqueer when every new girlfriend’s toothbrush gets added into her bath closet.
In the key of D – an under-appreciated, creative black woman jazz trumpeter makes an astounding decision to be noticed in a white and male dominated americas of the early to mid 20th century.
With conviction – a humorous big femme lesbian’s perspective on sex and being there.
36 A - about a transman’s dad’s death triggering the transitional journey. Very poignant. He talks in a subtle way about the clutches that non-trans folks and the health establishment have on trans people’s lives and in a poignant way touches how they have the grip on someone’s transition, not themselves.
Out on love - an awkward lesbian’s night out on a blind date and the tragic-comedy that ensues.
Figure drawing – a really cute movie about 2 women holding secret crushes on each other and the drama that takes place.
3 girls & 9 lives – a humorous intermingling of roommates, boyfriend, girlfriends, soccer teams, cousins and family.
The very last film for this year’s FF was “legally Challenged” by Priti Narayanan from Trikone Bay Area, highlighting the immigration woes of multi-national couples in the United States, one of whom is an American citizen. A very well made, poignant movie and it also won the API filmmakers award presented by QWOCMAP.