WUSSY Picks: Queens, Queers, and Gay Porn Stars at the 2019 Atlanta Film Festival

The Farewell

The Farewell

Part of having a voice is being an audience. Showing up. Taking your seat. Filling the room with your presence, your vision, your laughter and your applause. If it's warranted, of course.

The 2019 Atlanta Film Festival once again features films that will delight queer folk of all stripes and colors. The Pink Peach Series is back, including films  made by and telling the stories of LGBTQ people. Other films at the festival are sure to be a treat for any audience member with a queer eye.

Scream queens. Shower scenes. Fade to black. Taste the rainbow.

Over 11 days (April 4th to 14th), the AFF will showcase over 100 films and documentaries. Below are a few must see recommendations for your viewing pleasure.Below we break down WUSSY’s picks of best bets at the 43rd annual Atlanta Film Festival.


THE FAREWELL

Fri, Apr 5th, 7:00 PM @ The Plaza Theatre

Any chance we get to see Awkwafina (star of YouTube, Crazy Rich Asians and Oceans 8) shine like the sparkle she is, well, that's a definite win. Playing kind of like The Wedding Banquet with a generational twist, this story of a family poignantly and awkwardly trying to keep a secret that really needs not be kept secret will resonate with queer audiences. Did I mention it features Awkwafina? This one is a must-see.

Director Lulu Wang is also scheduled to attend!

PAGEANT MATERIAL

Tue, Apr 9th, 9:15 PM @ Dad's Garage Theatre (SOLD OUT)
Saturday, April 13th, 10 PM @ Plaza Theatre

Deep down in our Pink Peach little hearts, we all know that we are queens of the universe, and that Atlanta, GA, is the center of that universe. The buzz around Pageant Material is as electric as that superfluous lighting at the top of the Bank of America building.

The story is of 17-year-old Rodney, dealing with the death of his mother while also dreaming of escaping his small southern hometown to follow in her footsteps as an award-winning pageant queen. Despite an onslaught of bullying and abuse from his family and peers, Rodney calls upon a unique cast of idiosyncratic and oh so very southern characters to help him take the crown in a teen drag pageant in Atlanta.

This film also features appearances by drag kid Desmon Naples and  local celeb Evah Destruction.



LITTLE WOODS

Wed, Apr 10th, 8:00 PM @ The Plaza Theatre

Can you do this without getting caught? Yes.

Are you sure? Of course not!

Tessa Thompson OMG. The acting and the action in this film is tense, high-quality, and thrill a minute.

Little Woods, North Dakota, is a fracking boomtown well beyond its prime. Ollie (Thompson) is trying to survive the last few days of her probation after getting caught illegally running prescription pills over the Canadian border. But when her mother dies, she is thrust back into the life of her estranged sister Deb (Lily James), who is facing her own crisis with an unplanned pregnancy and a deadbeat ex. The two find they have one week to settle the mortgage on their mother's house or face foreclosure.

Woe unto ye. Be very afraid, y'all. The biggest fears this movie stirs up are those lurking in the ever-present near future. Sociopolitically, existentially, and spiritually, this film is sure to be chilling. And thrilling. Don your bonnets. Grab your seats. Snag a ticket.



JONATHAN AGASSI SAVED MY LIFE

Thu, Apr 11th, 7:00 PM @ The Plaza Theatre

Who knew that one of the world's most beloved gay pornstars had an artistic acumen and pathos rivaling that of Kevin Aucoin and Gianni Versace?

Critically acclaimed Israeli documentary filmmaker Tomer Heymann does, that's who. An intimate and revealing portrait of a gay Israeli man and porn star, his family, his fame, and, of course, the industry, this film shows you the person behind your dreamiest orgasm. The freedom of sex, the allure of drugs, and the confines of family ultimately force Jonathan to confront the harsh realities of his extreme lifestyle.

So basically, what I'm saying is, in this documentary, the popcorn melts itself. Poignant, moving, and periodically resplendent, it's always nice to see some porn on the big screen.

Filmmaker Tomer Heymann is scheduled to attend for a post-screening q&a.


BUT ALSO, DON'T MISS THESE SHORT SHORT FILMS:

When Pride Comes To Town / BYGDEHOMO

Thu, Apr 11th, 7:30 PM @ Hilan Theatre

After leaving his rural hometown in Norway to escape homophobia, Bjørn-Tore returns decades later to participate in its first Pride parade.

Awww.



Things That Happen In The Bathroom

Sat, Apr 13th, 12:30 PM @ The Plaza Theatre

53048090_594236784382670_6408483860132134912_o.jpg

In the intimate sanctuary of the bathroom, a lonely young queer yearns for love and learns how to survive heartbreak.

So basically, it's the story of my life. Quel dommage. C'est la vie. Ce n'est pas grave!





Scott King is an Atlanta-based writer, analyst, and political consultant. He eats a carbon-based diet and does not care if you are masc.