Founded by Chris Walters in 2004, The Bendigo Queer Film Festival (BQFF) aims to screen a high quality film and arts calendar event to the queer and broader community. Late this month, BQFF will continue its ongoing celebration of the diverse local queer population over the course of one jam-packed weekend. Known for its accessibility and exceptional creative standard, the festival is a dynamic environment that thrives on attendance from unique individuals across all walks of life.
One of the few regional centres in the nation that hosts its own queer film festival, the event is undoubtedly a representation of the authentic community spirit that’s immersed within the town. Commemorating 15 years of inclusiveness, the films are scheduled for screening at the La Trobe Art Institute, the cornerstone of Bendigo’s picturesque arts quarter.
We’ve created a shortlist of the films we think you should make your way on over to.
‘THE GOSPEL ACCORDING TO ANDRE’ (2017)
Saturday, 28 April @ 1.30pm – Running time 94 minutes
Icon of the fashion world, Andre Leon Tally is an industry heavyweight with a style that pushes the boundaries. Known as one of the most significant voices in fashion, Andre’s influence on couture is widely recognised in his craft. In her film, The Gospel According to Andre, Kate Novack takes viewers on an emotional journey, delving into Andre’s upbringing in Jim Crow South to making it as a significant figure in fashion. An exploration of Andre’s personal relationships, the Black Church of his childhood and his ground-breaking work at successful publications like Women’s Wear Daily, W and Vogue, the film has been described as “a cinematic monument to one of the most unique figures of 20th Century American culture.”
‘SIGNATURE MOVE’ (2017)
Saturday, 28 April @ 5.00pm – Running time 80 minutes
Two unalike women from different worlds meet in Chicago and charm themselves into a forbidden love. Zaynab, a Pakistani Muslim whose mother is obsessed with finding her a husband, is unbeknown to her, gay. To let out her frustrations, she decides to take up Lucha-style wrestling, where she meets Alma, a Latina bookstore owner, and her life begins to change. A blend of cultural indifferences, heartache and uncertainty, the film regenerates the stereotypical lesbian rom-com.
‘BPM (BEATS PER MINUTE)’ (2017)
Sunday, 29 April @ 12.30pm – Running time 144 minutes
Winner of the Grand Prix and Queer Palm at the Cannes Film Festival, BPM is a passionate film from Robin Campillo. Set in the early 1990s, the story is centred around the AIDS pandemic and its impact on the community. Act Up-Paris activists resort to public actions to fight against general indifference. Nathan, a new arrival to the movement, faces problems when he meets Sean, a radical militant.
When & Where: The BQFF runs from Friday April 27 to April 29. Further information available through bendigoqueerfilmfestival.com.au.
Written by Hannah Kenny