BFI Flare: London LGBT Film Festival
Veteran programmer Brian Robinson's selection of shorts (for the "connoisseur", he said in his intro) was largely a disappointing, deeply frustrating collation of pretentious film school bollocks. Opening was Stephen Dunn and Peter Knegt's Good Morning (Canada), a fairly slight - yet cute - rumination on gay men and age. It was downhill from there.
David Ealing's What Do We Need? (Spain) wasn't witty, clever, nor, despite some cute boys, sexy. Someone spunks on a crucifix. If you think that's clever, this might be the film for you.
Things perked up a bit with Venci Kostov's The Son (Spain, again), an eventful melodrama (props to Fanny de Castro for her touching performance as a put-upon Spanish mama) which ends up in a depressing cul-de-sac.
The afternoon took a sharp dive with Drew Lint's interminable Rough Trade (Canada, again) an exercise in pointless, self-indulgent w**k. I wanted to curl up on the floor in a ball and pretend I was somewhere better; swinging on a hook in an abattoir, for example. The rapid cut flashes gave me a headache, too. Cheers for that.
Brian had one final gift for us, Christophe Predari's Human Warmth (Belgium). Brian describes it as, "An exquisite poetic short about conflicting emotions where two young men confront unresolved desire at the end of a relationship." It wasn't exquisite.
You don't expect to like everything in a programme of shorts. You can expect to be challenged. But this selection was, simply, f**king atrocious.
Next: Cross My Heart
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