Lotus Sports Club

Filmed in Cambodia over the course of 5 years, “Lotus Sports Club”, is an inspiring coming-of-age story. In its center is Leak, a teenage trans man who plays football in the under-21s women’s team of Kampong Chhnang, and Pa Vann, the trans coach and father-figure to Leak and other LGBTQ+ players on the team. 61-year-old Pa Vann established the football team in 2009 to encourage solidarity among straight, lesbian and gender-diverse players. He also opened his home to the more vulnerable and often homeless teenagers, including Leak, thus providing these LGBTQ+ players a safe place to be themselves.
After living with Pa Vann for many years, Leak, driven by the pressure to make more money for his family and forced off the football team because of his age, takes the heart-breaking decision to move to Cambodia’s capital, Phnom Penh, leaving behind the one person he loves the most.

Soy Nino

Bastian is a young trans boy from Chile who is facing a very difficult time – adolescence. It all becomes much harder when he has to devote most of his efforts into expressing his own individualism. His cousin, film director Lorena Zilleruelo, followed and filmed Bastian from the age of 12 until he was 18 years old, and witnessed his most intimate, moving and hard moments. This is also the journey of Bastian’s parents, who decide to support their son despite their own difficulties and eventually become activists for trans rights.
Despite the support he receives at home, Bastian has to face social and economical difficulties that might jeopardise his ambitions.
Bastian’s journey introduces us to a more trans tolerant Chile, thanks to a new and liberal generation.

The Oleanders

Paola, Betty and Eva are three trans women in the 60’s who’ve known each other for over 40 years. The three started as sex workers in Athens in their youth. In the film “The Oleanders” they revisit their old turf – the streets where they used to work, hang out, get harassed or arrested by the police, fight for their rights, enjoy life and find love. The three are having an unapologetic, humoristic and empowering discussion on the queer history of Athens and beyond.
The Oleanders” was directed by social activist and filmmaker Paola Revenioti, who is also one of the three protagonists. Get ready for a hysterical and historical 65 minutes that manages to entertain, move and empower.

Into My Name

Four friends – Leonardo, Raffaele, Andrea and Nicolo take a look back on their childhood and youth. They share their experiences and memories, even when they failed to live up to society’s norms. Each of their gender biographies is different and yet there are similarities. This helps them understand one another better and feel less alone.
In front of the camera they talk about love, partnership, choosing their name, hormone treatment, surgery decisions and dealing with the bureaucracy of those long and complex processes. In a very binary world, and especially in a conservative country such as Italy, the decision to determine your own gender is a subversive act.
Into My Name” provides its protagonists with a safe space to describe their personal journey to their chosen selves. This film is a sensitive description of the hardships they’ve had to overcome in their way to fulfill the social, physical and legal change they yearn for.

Q&A with the director and producer after the screenings.

In association with the Italian Cultural Institute

Before We Move

3.11 screening includes Q&A with the director and the cast.
5.11 – director in attendance

This film brings to the screen the story of queer tango dancers in St. Petersburg, who dance in the hope of making a change for the LGBTQ community.
The queer tango movement takes the popular, sensual dance and reinterprets it. Otar and Misha are a couple, both professional dancers and choreographers, and members of the movement that challenges the conventions of traditional tango. While there is a feeling of euphoria and happiness in the dance lessons and the meetings between the company members, there is always the worry and danger of living in a country where homophobia is widely spread and the LGBTQ community members get absolutely no protection. This situation leads Otar and Misha to make a dramatic decision and immigrate to Israel.
This gentle and moving film follows the couple in the months and weeks before they leave the country and their goodbyes to the people they care about the most.
Before We Move” is the new documentary film by Aleksandr M. Vinogradov. His previous film “Bare” followed the rehearsals of the bold dance piece Anima Ardens (Burning Soul) that screened at the 2021 TLVfest.
Before We Move” will screen in Tel Aviv, right after its world premiere at the Sheffield International Documentary Film Festival.

Additional screening: Jerusalem Cinematheque 2.11, 17:00

The Last Chapter

Bernard is a French man on the verge of his twilight years, he is moving into a new apartment, probably his last. Director Gianluca Matarrese documents without any filters himself and his much older lover. He is documenting them reminiscing and having sex, playing control and submission games, master and slave. A young and curious filmmaker and his older BDSM fan lover, who lost his greatest love during the AIDS pandemic of the 80’s and suddenly, years later, found himself falling for a younger man. What at first started out just as a sexual adventure, turned out to be much more.
This is a film about the generation gap, friendship, life, death, sex, love adn dealing with the fast approaching inevitable end .
The Last Chapter” is a courageous, unfiltered documentary.

Viewing is 18+ due to explicit sex scenes.

In association with the French Institute

Alis

28.10 screening – Opening speeches

In a youth shelter in Colombia, ten young women sit down in front of the camera and close
their eyes. They are instructed to picture Alis, an imaginary friend that came to the shelter, and to tell her life story. Like the other girls, Alis used to live in the streets of Bogota. This imaginary companion is the beginning of a very unique and extraordinary documentary project. Alis is used as a gentle and reflective entry point to the personal stories of the participants. Alis becomes a chilling mirror of the life stories of ten young women who talk to the camera about past traumas, surprising love stories and their ambitions for the future. “Alis” might be an imaginary friend, but she will take you on a moving journey into the world of young women who have been through so much at a too young age and now deserve to enjoy some of the freedom the shelter provides before embarking on a new journey as adults.
Directors Claire Weisskopff and Nicholas Van Hemlrick’s work is sensitive, gentle and compassionate, and gives a unique and direct glimpse into the stories of young women whom society doesn’t notice. For the first time they look straight into the camera and tell their story, as they try to break the vicious cycle they were born into.

Additional screening: Rosh Pina Cinematheque 29.10, 20:30

In association with the the Romanian Cultural Institute

Nelly & Nadine

The voice of Nelly, an opera singer, is ringing out in the middle of Ravensbruck concentration camp. Nelly and Nadine first met on Christmas 1944 in the hell of the concentration camp and there started a relationship that would change their world. Nelly Mousset-Vos, was an opera singer in Paris, who used to frequent Natalie Clifford Barney’s literary salon in the 30’s. Nadine Hwang was the rebellious daughter of the Chinese ambassador to Spain. Sylvie, Nelly’s granddaughter, discovers a diary, 8mm film clips and audio tapes in a locked box belonging to her grandmother. She pieces together the unbelievable, bigger-than-life love story of Nelly and Nadine. For a whole year, Swedish acclaimed director Magnus Gertten (“Only the Devil Lives without Hope”) accompanies Sylvie in her search for the untold stories of her grandmother Nelly and her lover Nadine. The result is a moving documentary about a deep, loving relationship. This is an unforgettable memoir of two women who were determined to be truly free, as well as a reminder of the need for individual and collective remembrance.

In association with the Embassy of Sweden