One of the God-knows-how-many reasons why Buenos Aires is such an awesome city is that it’s a cinephile’s dream. Besides the annual dependable offerings such as BAFICI and genre darling Buenos Aires Rojo Sangre, the city seems to dish out film festival after film festival at an absurd rate, enough for any cinematic taste.
Just last week, we were gushing about the Venezuelan Film Festival and today we’re getting ready for the upcoming Espacio Queer, also known as the Festival de Cine sobre Diversidad Sexual y Género that will be taking place in La Plata beginning tomorrow, June 25th. This is the 6th edition of the event, which will be featuring an international feature-length competition for the first time, besides its usual array of activities, talks, and workshops.
Espacio Queer first began in 2009 as a series of screenings aimed at generating discussions and debate around the issues of sexual diversity and gender. Before long, the original group was traveling the country with the initiative and by 2014 the idea of a full-blown festival was born in La Plata. A lot has happened since in matters of the LGBTQ+ community in Argentina but, fortunately, the festival has not only withstood the crisis, but even managed to grow a bit every year.
As the site explains, in the face of a rise in the popularity of conservative ideas and the pushback against gay rights, the festival has become, perhaps, more relevant than ever: “As repulsion and violence grow bigger, so too do these spaces grow, in which we support each other collectively. In that sense, we invade public space as a means to communicate, we encourage critical reflexions about diversity in sexual, cultural and social identities in different contexts and realities.”
As mentioned before, the festival will showcase its first international full-length competition, headlined by BAFICI winner Fin de Siglo from Lucio Castro. Other notable picks in this section include Venice Queer Lion winner José (Guatemala) directed by Li Cheng and Retablo (Peru) which premiered at the Berlin festival. Rounding up this section are Cassandro, el Exótico, by Marie Losier; Enigma, by Ignacio Juricic and Fabiana, by Brunna Laboissière.
There are also two short film competitions (national and international) and three parallel sections: The Big City, Our Rights, and In First Person, featuring an assorted selection of both long and short features from around the world. Besides the screenings, there will be a talk on collective creations by and about femininity, and three workshops: graphic experimentation, the body in film, and feminist self-defense.
Opening night will feature a special screening of Una banda de chicas, directed by Marilina Giménez and a concert by La Plata natives JOYAZ. All festivities come to an end on Friday with a huge bash featuring music by Ibiza Pareo and DJ Max Cortéz. Entrance to all events except the party are free.