The Full Programme for this year’s Queer Wave: the Cyprus LGBTQIA+ Film Festival
Queer Wave 2022 kicks off on Friday 25 November and carries on through to Sunday 4 December in the old city of Nicosia.
During the third edition of the Festival, a total of 70 films will be screened, among which 15 feature films, five Cypriot entries and more than 60 Cypriot premieres. This year’s program combines retrospectives, documentaries, animated films, and family-friendly segments. As a sign of solidarity with countries which today lack basic human rights, three short films from Iran, Ukraine and Palestine will also be screened.
After a special screening of Flee at the Rialto Theatre, this year’s Queer Wave officially kicks off at Theatro Polis (opposite the Old Powerhouse) on 25.11 with Maryam Touzani’s The Blue Caftan from Morocco, a subversive film that had its world premiere at this year’s Cannes Film Festival, winning the International Jury (FIPRESCI) in the “Un Certain Regard” section. On the opening night, the Deputy Minister of Culture Yiannis Toumazis will address a greeting.
Other festival hits in this year’s lineup include Swedish filmmaker Magnus Gertten’s moving documentary Nelly & Nadine (29.11), about a tender story of lesbian love buried in time; as well as a sensual queer musical with pop Egyptian music and a narrative structure similar to One Thousand and One Nights: Shall I Compare You to A Summer’s Day? by Mohammad Shawky Hassan (30.11), which traces out multple stories of polyamory.
On the occasion of the European Year of Youth, this year’s Queer Wave will give special visibility to young characters, with the aim of raising public awareness of the care that is still not systematically offered to LGBT+ youth in Cyprus. From Argentina and Finland respectively we have Mariano Biasin’s Sublime (11/26) and Alli Haapasalo’s Girl Picture (26.11), which shed light on the romantic and erotic exploration of bisexual and asexual characters among other themes. The transgender protagonist of Laurent Micheli’s Lola and the Sea from Belgium (26.11) will surely captivate hearts, with the film’s tender approach to family ties. Metamorphosis by J.E. Tiglao (27.11) is the first film from the Philippines to screen at Queer Wave, as well as the festival’s first feature film with an intersex protagonist – a truly rare kind in cinema. Finally, Canadian director Bretten Hannam’s Wildhood (27.11) also offers a glimpse into a world rarely seen on screen, in a film that follows queer indigenous characters with lightness and humour.
For documentary lovers, the programme is complemented by Tilos Weddings from Greek director Panagiotis Evagelidis (26.11), who will attend Queer Wave in person to present his film – a tribute to the LGBT+ activists in Greece, who defied the state’s objections by taking part in the country’s first two same-sex marriages. With his observant yet impartial gaze, Adrián Silvestre brings this year’s Queer Wave a highly sensitive and beautifully multilayered portrait of the trans experience with the fun yet moving Sediments from Spain (28.11). One of the six women featured in the documentary will attend the festival to introduce the film.
Films with a queer subject matter from Cypriot directors have a marked presence again this year, with four short films and one feature film in the selection, among them two local premieres. These films are: The Man with the Answers by Stelios Kammitsis (27.11); Erma by Angelos Charalambous (28.11); Walls by Semeli Vogazianou (29.11); A Summer Place by Alexandra Matheou (30.11); and Que Será, Será by Alexandros Pissourios (01.12). The five directors will be with us after the screening of their films for a discussion with the audience: three Q&As delivered in person and two online.
Celebrating the filmmakers of a different time, who paved a way forward for queer cinema, the festival once again pays tribute to multiple gems in its retrospective: Theorem (01.12) to celebrate 100 years from the birth of Italian director Pier Paolo Pasolini; The Bitter Tears of Petra von Kant (02.12) by German director Rainer Werner Fassbinder on the occasion of the film’s 50th anniversary; and Victim (03.12) by British director Basil Dearden – a film of historical significance in the context of the gay rights movement and the decriminalisation of homosexuality in 1960s UK.
This year a special platform will be given to filmmakers of short works from the international queer scene, with a total of eight different short film programmes: among them, four which include a Cypriot film; a programme focusing on family matters; and a selection of nine Super-8 gems by Michael Brynntrup, an important part of the German underground scene of the ’80s and ’90s, who will be attending the festival in person to present his work. For the first time, Queer Wave will also include a short film programme with pornographic content. Among the short films selected are also this year’s Queer Palm (Cannes) and Teddy Award (Berlin) winners.
Full programme on website: queerwave.com
During Queer Wave 2022, there will be events held every night, after the screenings, with local artists – LGBT+ and friends – presenting works at Sessions (6 Sapfous Street). Sessions is a newly-established and promising queer space in Nicosia, which will be hosting 10 days of parallel events in collaboration with Queer Wave. In addition to performances, live music with DJs, exhibitions and discussions, Sessions will provide a social space for Queer Wave audiences to gather throughout the Festival, providing drinks and vegan snack options. More information on Instagram: @sesssssions
Queer Wave 2022 Screening Venues
Theatro Polis – opposite the Old Powerhouse (25.11-01.12)
Goethe-Institut Cyprus – Ledra Palace check-point (02.12)
Shakespeare House – northern Nicosia (03.12)
Sessions – 6 Sapfous Street (04.12)