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Melbourne Queer Film Festival unveils 2017 program

Celebrating its 27th year, the inimitable festival has revealed 135 films encompassing 30 countries.

Fifteen documentaries, 47 features, 73 shorts, 6 Australian premieres and ten special event screenings and forums make up a bill which will see a special satellite event take over Testing Grounds in Southbank.

 

According to Melbourne Queer Film Festival (MQFF) Program Director, Spiro Economopoulos, this year’s event is about showcasing the very best LGBTIQ film talent from around the world.

 

“With this year’s Festival we wanted to showcase the films that have won top honours for the biggest queer film awards around the world, including Tomcat, the Berlin Teddy Award winner, the Iris Prize-winning short, Balcony and the Cannes Queer Palm winner, The Lives of Thérèse.”

 

Opening with the Australian premiere of I Am Michael, starring James Franco and Zachary Quinto, MQFF will also screen Justin Kelly’s provocative foray King Cobra – dubbed the Boogie Nights of gay porn.

 

Marking the festival’s halfway point is this year’s Centrepiece film – the bold independently funded Australian fantasy Pulse – mixing sexuality and teen angst with an undercurrent of sci-fi.

 

Sundance Special Jury Prize winner As You Are leads the International Features – featuring Charlie Heaton (Jonathan from Stranger Things). Other highlights include Californian drama Take Me To The River, introspective exploration of intersexuality Arianna as well as The Pass and Suicide Kale.

 

Highlighting MQFF’s Documentary schedule is one of award-winning filmmaker Eddie Rosenstein’s finest works Freedom To Marry alongside Check It – an intimate drama exploring the journey of a group of American gay and trans teens fighting discrimination in Washington D.C.

 

Capping off the festival on Sunday March 26 is MQFF Australian Shorts and Awards Night, which sees eligible films competing for a cash prize pool of $4,500.

With 94 of its events sprawling ACMI, Kino Cinemas and Cinema Nova, MQFF 2017 comes to Melbourne from Thursday March 16 until Monday March 27.