AFI FEST 2021: LGBTQ Films – American Film Institute

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AFI FEST 2021: LGBTQ Films

Pride comes in many forms. And we have a lot to be proud of with our films exploring people along the queer spectrum! The AFI FEST 2021 lineup has no shortage of incredible films that are sure to pique your interests. These films touch on history and activism, uncovering fascinating and inspiring stories alongside personal and emotional ones, celebrating unsung personalities and shedding light on beautiful subcultures. Join us in the concert hall, in the Puerto Rican jungle, a German prison, a small Italian apartment, and the many other places explored within this section. This diverse collection of features and shorts is a veritable rainbow of offerings that you will not want to miss.

BERNSTEIN’S WALL

For the better part of the 20th century, composer and conductor Leonard Bernstein was a household name due to his music in WEST SIDE STORY (for which he won an Academy Award®), his role as Musical Director of the New York Philharmonic and his work on television making classical music accessible to the general public. This documentary follows the life of this extraordinary first-generation son of Ukrainian-Jewish parents, from his early life in New England, to the many “firsts” he claimed during his early orchestral career and his constant advocacy of worthy causes. The narration uses Bernstein’s own words, harvested from his many recorded appearances on the radio, television and in-person interviews, which offers a strikingly intimate perspective. Learn more about the film.

Screening in-person |  November 12, 3:15 p.m. | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

 

CODED

The coded advertisements of legendary early-20th century gay illustrator J.C. Leyendecker quietly, but directly, acknowledged a community that was forced to live in the closet. Screens as part of Meet The Press Shorts 1. Learn more about the film.

Screening in-person |  November 11, 8:30 p.m.  | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

Virtual screening available beginning November 11, 12:00 p.m. PST | Buy Virtual Ticket(s)

 

COMPARTMENT NO. 6 

Finland Official International Feature Film Oscar® Submission

A young Finnish woman escapes an enigmatic love affair in Moscow by boarding a train to the arctic port of Murmansk. Forced to share the long ride and a tiny sleeping car with a larger-than-life Russian miner, the unexpected encounter leads the occupants of Compartment No. 6 to face major truths about human connection. COMPARTMENT NO. 6 shared the Grand Prix award at Cannes in 2021 and has been selected as Finland’s official entry for the 94th Academy Awards®. Learn more about the film.

Screening in-person | November 11, 10:00 p.m. | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

ENVIAR Y RECIBIR

A warehouse worker at a fast fashion company forms an attachment to a piece of damaged inventory.  Screens as part of SHORTS PROGRAM 2. Learn more about the film.

Screening in-person |  November 12, 6:00 p.m.  | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

Virtual screening available beginning November 11, 12:00 p.m. PST | Buy Virtual Ticket(s)

 

GREAT FREEDOM 

Austria Official International Feature Film Oscar® Submission

Winner of the Un Certain Regard Jury Prize at the 2021 Cannes Film Festival and nominated for the Queer Palm, Franz Rogowski [who starred in the AFI FEST films HAPPY END (2017) and I WAS AT HOME, BUT…(2019)] captivates as the lovesick Hans in Sebastian Meise’s second narrative feature 10 years following his debut (STILL LIFE). Incessantly imprisoned for breaking Germany’s “Paragraph 175” – a law that makes homosexuality a crime – Hans’ life unfolds in postwar Germany over three periods of time and with three distinct relationships. He has a brief but passionate connection with Leo, a soft-spoken schoolteacher, and a longer, more serious romance with Oskar. But Hans’ most complex and profound relationship is with Viktor, his homophobic cellmate, who after 20 years grows to be his closest confidante. Learn more about the film.

Screening in-person | November 14, 4:00 p.m.  | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

 

HER DANCE

After not being invited to her sister’s wedding, Aya, a transwoman, shows up by surprise on a Shabbat night at the Orthodox Jewish community where her family lives. Screens as part of  Shorts Program 2. Learn more about the film.

Screening in-person |  November 12, 6:00 p.m.  | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

Virtual screening available beginning November 11, 12:00 p.m. PST | Buy Virtual Ticket(s)

 

MANO SANTO

A grandfather harbors his runaway grandson after fleeing the constraints of home. Screens as part of Shorts Program 4. Learn more about the film.

Screening in-person |  November 13, 2:15 p.m.  | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

Virtual screening available beginning November 11, 12:00 p.m. PST | Buy Virtual Ticket(s)

 

PARIS, 13TH DISTRICT

Adapted from Adrian Tomine’s acclaimed graphic novel, PARIS, 13TH DISTRICT weaves a breezy tapestry of modern love stories. Beautifully realized in crisp black-and-white cinematography, the electrifying, multicultural 13th arrondissement sets the stage for a panoramic tale of four young lovers. Lucie Zhang delivers a breakout performance as free-spirited Émilie, who begins a casual relationship with new roommate Camille (Makita Samba). Noémie Merlant (PORTRAIT OF A LADY ON FIRE) plays wide-eyed student Nora, whose new life in Paris is complicated when she is accidentally mistaken for cam girl Amber Sweet (Jehnny Beth). Stepping away from his usual genre fare, Jacques Audiard, along with script collaborators Céline Sciamma and Léa Mysius, brings to life the sprawling dreams of desire and human connection in the city of love. Learn more about the film.

Screening in-person |  November 11, 8:15 p.m.  | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

Virtual screening available beginning November 11, 12:00 p.m. PST | Buy Virtual Ticket(s)

 

PLAYTIME

North American Premiere

A mother wants to play with her son. A boy wants to find out what his friend is giving a girl. A cat has disappeared. But these are only games.  Screens as part of Shorts Program 5. Learn more about the film.

Screening in-person |  November 13, 4:45 p.m.  | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

Virtual screening available beginning November 11, 12:00 p.m. PST | Buy Virtual Ticket(s)

 

PRIDE

An aspiring writer finalizes stories for “Pride,” a student-run newspaper. Over a hectic two days in the early 1990s, she puts the finishing touches on the upcoming issue. Screens as part of Shorts Program 4. Learn more about the film.

Screening in-person |  November 13, 2:15 p.m.  | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

Virtual screening available beginning November 11, 12:00 p.m. PST | Buy Virtual Ticket(s)

 

A SUMMER PLACE

On the day of Tina’s birthday, she is ready to give up on everything until an extraordinary encounter changes her life. Screens as part of Shorts Program 1. Learn more about the film.

Screening in-person | November 12, 3:00 p.m.  | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

Virtual screening available beginning November 11, 12:00 p.m. PST | Buy Virtual Ticket(s)

 

tick, tick…BOOM!

Opening Night / World Premiere 

Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award® winner Lin-Manuel Miranda makes his feature directorial debut with tick, tick…BOOM!, an adaptation of the autobiographical musical by Jonathan Larson, who revolutionized theater as the creator of “Rent.”

Jon is a young theater composer who’s waiting tables at a New York City diner in 1990 while writing what he hopes will be the next great American musical. Days before he’s due to showcase his work in a make-or-break performance, Jon is feeling the pressure from everywhere: from his girlfriend Susan, who dreams of an artistic life beyond New York City; from his friend Michael, who has moved on from his dream to a life of financial security; amidst an artistic community ravaged by the AIDS epidemic. With the clock ticking, Jon is at a crossroads and faces the question everyone must reckon with: What are we meant to do with the time we have? Learn more about the film.

Screening in-person |  November 10, 7:30 p.m.  | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

 

 

WILDHOOD

US Premiere

The road of life can be difficult as Link, an indigenous Mi’kmaw teen, certainly knows. Fortunately, he has his younger half-brother, Travis, by his side. When their abusive father is discovered to be hiding an unimaginable secret about Link’s long-lost mother, the brothers begin a challenging and revelatory. Following the breadcrumbs of information along the way, the brothers begin a journey in search of her. During their quest, they are joined by Pasmay, also two-spirit and Mi’kmaw, known in the community for his dancing. Link soon discovers that Pasmay’s kindness and generosity are infectious. What starts as a bleak story of despair for Link, turns into a charming trek of self-discovery and young love. Writer/director Bretten Hannam’s second feature is overflowing with visual and emotional beauty. Learn more about the film. 

Screening in-person |  November 13, 4:00 p.m.  | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

 

 

With health and safety being top priority, AFI FEST 2021 will require all festival-goers who attend in-person events and/or screenings to be fully vaccinated.  Learn more about AFI’s annual film festival celebrating the best in global cinema at FEST.AFI.com.

Individual tickets and passes to AFI FEST 2021 are currently available on FEST.AFI.com. AFI Members receive exclusive discounts and benefits to the festival. To become an AFI member, visit AFI.com/join/.

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