April 24-May 3, 2015
The Miami Gay and Lesbian Film Festival (MGLFF) has grown exponentially over the past 17 years. When it began, it was a three-day event and 25 films were screened during the festival. This year, over 65 movies will be screened across a period of ten days. It’s an exciting time to be a movie buff in South Florida! The film festival’s mission, in part, is to “inspire, entertain and educate the public,” and through the years they have done just that. As the first major LGBT film festival to occur in the United States in 2015, the selections that are given rave reviews at this festival will no doubt become critical darlings for the entire year.
There are many films that will be making their world premieres here at MGLFF, as well as a few that will be screened for the very first time in the state of Florida. World premieres at MGLFF include Not Safe to Be Me, a documentary which showcases the issues LGBT people have faced throughout the 20th century and into the present; Game Face, two real-life stories of athletes who have proudly come out and how their choice to live openly impacts them and the world around them; Proxy, a film made in Miami about eight people with different stories whose lives fatefully intertwine; Beautiful Something, a story of four gay men of varying ages enjoying a night of fun, sex and love in Philadelphia, and Seeking Dolly Parton, a story about two women who want to conceive a child and end up asking an ex-boyfriend for the sperm.
Movies that will be premiering in Florida for the first time include I Am Michael, a movie about the former LGBT activist turned ex-gay pastor Michael Glatze, starring James Franco and Zachary Quinto; and Jayson Bend: Queen and Country, a film about a gay secret agent who must save the world from a ruthless hair salon tycoon and his evil plot to destroy mankind.
There are many fun events that are going on during the film festival. The hotly-anticipated opening night film this year is Boulevard, featuring Robin Williams in one of his final performances. Robin Williams plays a character trapped in an unhappy existence and a loveless marriage. His life and the lives of the people he loves are impacted forever by the actions of a hustler, with whom he has become sexually involved. The film will be screened at the Colony Theater (1040 Lincoln Rd., Miami Beach) on Friday, April 24 at 10 p.m., followed by a party at SKYDECK Miami (605 Lincoln Rd.).
The Centerpiece Party is also a very popular draw and it will be held this year at Kaskades Suites at Gale (300 17th St.), starting at 10 p.m. on Wednesday, April 29. The Centerpiece film that will be screened that night at 8 p.m. at Regal Cinemas South Beach (1100 Lincoln Rd.) is Nasty Baby, a story about a man who is so obsessed with having a child that it ends up ruining his life, his boyfriend’s life and the life of their best friend who has helped them in their endeavor.
Kick up your heels and enjoy the new High Heel Party, which will be held on Friday, May 1 at 10 p.m. at The Gleason Room Backstage at The Fillmore (1700 Washington Ave.). The closing night party, featuring lots of recognizable faces from the festival, is sure to be a smash, as it is every year. It will be held this year at Siena Tavern (404 Washington Ave.) on Saturday, May 2 starting at 10 p.m. The men’s closing night film, which you can see starting at 8:30 at the Colony Theater, is Death in Buenos Aires, a gay erotic thriller set in Argentina back in the 1980s. Finally, there will be an annual awards brunch, a final time for the films and filmmakers to be honored in style. It will be held at the Biltmore (1210 Anastasia Ave., Coral Gables) on Sunday, May 3, from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
To buy tickets to any of the films or parties, please note that many of these films sell out well in advance of the screening dates. Tickets can be bought by the general public starting April 18, online, by telephone by calling (305) 751-6305, or at the box office. Tickets for matinees are priced at $9 per person, or $10 at the box office. Regular screenings are priced at $11 per person and $12 at the box office. (There are discounts for MGLFF members; visit mglff.com for members pricing.) To attend the opening, centerpiece, special spotlights, and closing screenings and their parties, the ticket for all of these costs $30 per person. If you want to attend the film screenings only, the price is $15. There is also a special ticket ($20 per person) that would allow you to attend the opening, spotlight and closing parties only. For more information on ticketing, visit mglff.com/pages/tickets.
Hotspots Media Group is proud to be a sponsor of the Miami Gay and Lesbian Film Festival. For more in-depth coverage of the Festival, be sure to read our film reviews which will be in Hotspots Magazine next week. For more information about MGLFF, including a full list of films, visit mglff.org. Follow them on social media as well, on facebook and twitter @mglff and on Instagram at miamiglfilmfest.