Out­flix on its way, On Lo­ca­tion is im­mi­nent and Baobab is here

The Commercial Appeal - Go Memphis - - GO SEE - By John Bei­fuss

The Out­flix Film Fes­ti­val — Mem­phis’ an­nual event de­voted to new LGBT cin­ema — has set its 2016 screen­ing lineup.

Sched­uled to take place Sept. 7-11 at its usual home base, the Malco Ridge­way Cin­ema Grill, the 19th an­nual Out­flix fes­ti­val will host 12 nar­ra­tive fea­ture films, six doc­u­men­tary fea­tures and 14 short films from such coun­tries as Aus­tralia, Ar­gentina, In­dia, Thai­land, France, the Nether­lands, the United King­dom, Canada and, of course, the United States.

Out­flix typ­i­cally is a very smartly pro­grammed fes­ti­val that of­fers a mix of qual­ity in­die drama, boldly imag­i­na­tive cult-type dis­cov­er­ies and au­di­ence­friendly rom-coms. (The suc­cess of the fes­ti­val’s pro­gram­ming is ev­i­denced by the dura­bil­ity of its se­lec­tions. Net­flix, for ex­am­ple, cur­rently of­fers such for­mer Out­flix choices as In­dia’s “Mar­garita with a Straw,” Switzer­land’s “The Cir­cle,” Brazil’s “The Way He Looks” and the doc­u­men­tary “Tab Hunter Con­fi­den­tial.”)

This year’s open­ing­night film is Swe­den’s “Girls Lost,” about three bul­lied teenage girls who dis­cover a mag­i­cal plant that tem­po­rar­ily trans­forms them into boys. Some of the other promis­ing movies in­clude “Pa­tong Girl,” about a young Ger­man tourist who falls for a beau­ti­ful and mys­te­ri­ous Thai woman who may be a pros­ti­tute; “The Pas­sion­ate Pur­suits of An­gela Bowen,” a doc­u­men­tary about the black les­bian fem­i­nist pro­fes­sor and clas­si­cal dancer who for six decades has been an out­spo­ken ad­vo­cate of artis­tic in­tegrity and so­cial jus­tice; “The Girl King,” a Fin­nish same-sex ro­mance about the real-life 17th cen­tury Swedish queen, Christina (fa­mously played by Greta Garbo in a 1933 film); and “Check It,” a doc­u­men­tary about a gay and trans­gen­der street gang in in­nercity Wash­ing­ton whose mem­bers carry “knives, brass knuck­les and mace” along with “lip­stick and mas­cara” in their Louis Vuit­ton bags.

Fes­ti­val tick­ets are $10 per screen­ing (or $8 for stu­dents), while passes are $100 ($75 for stu­dents). The event is a fundraiser for the Mem­phis Gay and Les­bian Com­mu­nity Cen­ter, 826 Cooper. A full fes­ti­val sched­ule and more in­for­ma­tion can be found at out­flixfes­ti­val.org. Ad­vance tick­ets and passes also can be pur­chased (and printed out) di­rectly from the web­site.


The On Lo­ca­tion: Mem­phis In­ter­na­tional Film & Mu­sic Fest be­gins its 17th year Thurs­day with a 7 p.m. “mix and min­gle” preview party (with live mu­sic by Black Rock Re­vival) at the Hard Rock Cafe, 126 Beale.

The fest proper be­gins the next day and con­tin­ues through Aug. 14 with close to two dozen fea­ture films, a slate of live mu­sic, and a va­ri­ety of pan­els about film­mak­ing and the film in­dus­try (“Faith in Hol­ly­wood” and “Ten­nessee Women in Film and Me­dia” are among the top­ics). Screen­ings will be at the Malco Stu­dio on the Square.

A likely high­light will be a 25th an­niver­sary pre­sen­ta­tion of writer-di­rec­torstar Robert Townsend’s “The Five Heart­beats,” a drama about the up-and­down ca­reers of the mem­bers of a Mo­town-style vo­cal group in the 1960s. Townsend and fel­low ac­tor Leon, who co-stars as the most suc­cess­ful Romeo among the Heart­beats, are sched­uled to at­tend and host the 7 p.m. Aug. 13 event.

A new movie gar­ner­ing fa­vor­able buzz and fes­ti­val ac­claim (in­clud­ing a Spe­cial Jury Award at SXSW) is di­rec­tor Matthew Orn­stein’s “Ac­ci­den­tal Courtesy: Daryl Davis, Race & Amer­ica” (9:30 p.m., Aug. 12), a doc­u­men­tary — partly filmed in Mem­phis — about a black musician whose “hobby” is be­friend­ing and re­form­ing mem­bers of the Ku Klux Klan.

Also screen­ing dur­ing the fest will be the ten fi­nal­ists in the in­au­gu­ral “Mem­phis Film Prize” com­pe­ti­tion, which might be de­scribed as a fran­chise of the suc­cess­ful “Louisiana Film Prize,” es­tab­lished sarah gadon and ma­lin Buska star in “the girl King,” which screens in septem­ber dur­ing the out­flix film fes­ti­val.

in 2012. As de­ter­mined by the votes of fes­ti­val­go­ers, the win­ning short film — which earns a $10,000 cash prize — will be an­nounced dur­ing an Aug. 14 awards lun­cheon in The Atrium at Over­ton Square.

Another On Lo­ca­tion in­no­va­tion is the com­mis­sion­ing of an orig­i­nal work of art to rep­re­sent the fes­ti­val. This year’s “Reel Art” paint­ing, by Sir Walt and Marino

Joyner-wil­son, will hang at Art Vil­lage Gallery, 410 S. Main. Mean­while, the win­ning films from this sum­mer’s On Lo­ca­tion: Mem­phis Shorts Fes­ti­val — Mem­phian Tracy Fa­celli’s “How I Got Made” (live ac­tion), Ger­man artist Marc Zim­mer­mann’s “Nat­u­ral At­trac­tion” (an­i­ma­tion), and Dutch film­maker Gideon Elings’ “Floatin’ Down South” (doc­u­men­tary) — will screen on a loop in the gallery.

Fes­ti­val passes are $30 each, while ad­mis­sion to most in­di­vid­ual screen­ings is $8. To pur­chase tick­ets and passes or for more in­for­ma­tion, visit www.on­lo­ca­tion.mem­phis.org.


A bold ex­per­i­ment in lo­cal film ex­hi­bi­tion, the Baobab Film­house opens to­day at 652 Mar­shall (just down the street from Sun Stu­dio), in the so-called Edge district.

The brain­child of Hat­tiloo Theatre founder Ekun­dayo Ban­dele, the Baobab — named for the “tree of life” that is a gath­er­ing place and source of food and shel­ter in the African sa­vanna — has been de­signed as a cin­e­matic com­ple­ment to the live the­ater of Hat­tiloo. Both venues fo­cus on what the Baobab web­site de­fines as “the true re­al­ity of Black peo­ple around the world.”

A sort of “shoe box” the­ater, the Baobab will be open week­ends only. Even­tu­ally, two movies will al­ter­nate screen­ings on its 42-seat au­di­to­rium, but this open­ing week­end is de­voted to one film: “Cru,” a Los An­ge­les drama about old high school friends re­united 18 years af­ter a fate­ful ac­ci­dent. The cast in­cludes Jer­maine Craw­ford, Ali­son East­wood (daugh­ter of Clint), Melissa De Sousa and Harry Len­nix (“Gen­eral Swan­wick” in the new DC Comics movies).

“Cru” screens at 7 p.m. Fri­day, 1 and 7 p.m. Satur­day and 4 p.m. Sun­day. Ad­mis­sion is $12.50 at the door ($10 for mati­nees), or $10 in ad­vance ($8 for mati­nees), via the web­site baob­a­b­film­house.com. Tick­ets for stu­dents and se­niors are $8 each.

An in-depth story about the Baobab Film­house ran this past Sun­day in The Com­mer­cial Ap­peal. Find it at com­mer­cialap­peal.com/en­ter­tain­ment/movies.

Courtesy of Barn­steiner-film

“Pa­tong girl,” star­ring Ai­sawanya Areyawat­tana, is among the fea­tures sched­uled for the up­com­ing out­flix film fes­ti­val.

Courtesy of Wolfe re­leas­ing

the swedish film “girls lost” will be shown on open­ing night at the out­flix film fes­ti­val.

Courtesy of mar­i­anna films

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