From April 20–22, Reel Q brings back the Pittsburgh Underground Film Festival (PUFF) for a weekend of thought-provoking works about the LGBTQIA+ experience. The event includes a diverse array of feature-length and short documentaries addressing various aspects of LGBTQIA+ history and culture, including the HIV/AIDS crisis and the LGBTQIA+ influence on punk music. See schedule and details below:
Idol Worship: An Evening with Mink Stole and Peaches Christ
PUFF opens with a special presentation of Idol Worship: An Evening with Mink Stole and Peaches Christ at the Regent Square Theater. The show is an intimate, revelatory, and heartfelt happening that takes the form of a chat/variety show starring living legend and cult film icon Mink Stole, and is hosted by drag impresario and filmmaker Peaches Christ. The dynamic duo have been close friends for almost two decades and would like to invite you to join them for this special happening. With interviews, stories, film clips, anecdotes and live song this is a wildly entertaining, and uncensored exposé that aspires to be as hilarious as it is revealing.
Tickets cost $15 in advance, $20 a the door. VIP tickets are available for $40 in advance, $45 at the door. VIP tickets include a meet-and-greet with Mink Stole and Peaches Christ, an exclusive Q&A, early venue access, and reserved seats.
In Full Bloom (2015)
1 p.m. (Doors 12:30 p.m.)
The feature-length documentary by Michael D. Brewer chronicles the lives of 15 actors (13 transgender and 2 gay) whose paths cross during the production of Lovely Bouquet of Flowers, the unprecedented stage play created and written by Jazzmun Nichcala and director David Hays Gaddas. Fiction becomes reality, when behind-the-scenes footage of the rehearsal process and vignettes from the climactic performance are interwoven with expert testimonies and compelling personal interviews from the cast, that deal with family, inner conflicts, coming out, surgery, hormones, and the complexities of sexual identity and orientation. By sharing their own journeys and speaking to issues, such as relationships, spirituality, and careers, the film challenges the viewer to move past stereotypes and to see the commonalities we all share as human beings.
Nothing Without Us: The Women Who Will End AIDS (2017)
4 p.m. (Doors 3:30 p.m.)
Directed by Harriet Hirshorn, Nothing Without Us tells the story of the inspiring women at the forefront of the global AIDS movement. Combining archival footage and interviews with female activists, scientists and scholars in the US and Africa, the film reveals how women not only shaped grassroots groups like ACT-UP in the U.S. but have also played essential roles in HIV prevention and the treatment access movement throughout sub-Saharan Africa. The film explores the unaddressed dynamics that keep women around the world at risk of HIV while introducing the remarkable women who have the answers to ending this 30-year old pandemic.
Nothing Without Us screens at the Melwood Screening Room. Tickets cost $10.
Queercore: How to Punk a Revolution (2017)
7 p.m. (Doors 6:30 p.m.)
Director Yony Leyser presents the story of Queercore, the cultural and social movement that began in the mid-1980s as an offshoot of punk and was distinguished by its discontent with society’s disapproval of the gay, bisexual, lesbian and transgender communities. Underscoring interviews from figures such as Bruce LaBruce, G.B. Jones, Genesis Breyer P-Orridge, John Waters, Kim Gordon, and many more are clips from movies, zines, concerts, and actions iconic to the movement. As steeped in the radical queer, anti-capitalist, DIY, and give-no-fucks approach as queercore itself, the movie reveals the perspectives and experiences of bands, moviemakers, writers, and other outsiders, taking audiences inside the creation of the community—and art—so desperately needed by the same queers it encompassed.
Expanding Gender: Youth Out Front
1 p.m. (Lunch 12:30 p.m.)
This short film program includes four documentaries that explore the varied identities of trans and gender-expansive youth and young adults. Selected works include Tomgirl, A Place in the Middle, Monica’s Story, and Passing.
Expanding Gender: Youth Out Front screens at the Melwood Screening Room. Admission is pay-what-you-can.
Tongues Untied (1989)
3 p.m. (Doors 2:30 p.m.)
Directed by Marlon Riggs, Tongues Untied blends documentary footage with personal account and fiction in an attempt to depict the specificity of Black gay identity. Besides detailing North American black gay culture, Riggs recounts his own experiences as a gay man, including the realization of his sexual identity and of coping with the deaths of many of his friends to AIDS. Other elements include footage of the Civil Rights Movement and clips of Eddie Murphy performing a homophobic stand-up routine. The film is a part of a body of recently released films and videos that examine central issues in the lives of lesbian and gay Black people. Riggs’ work challenged television’s generic boundaries of conformity during the late 80s and early 90s. The television documentary during this time was the conventional talking head, expert interviews, and personal testimonials commonly on public affair issues.
Tongues Untied screens at the Melwood Screening Room. Admission is pay-what-you-can.
Django – Regent Square Theater
Django Reinhardt, as portrayed by Reda Kateb (A Prophet, Zero Dark Thirty), is the toast of 1943 Paris, thrilling audiences with his distinctive brand of “hot jazz” and charming his admirers and his muse (Cécile de France). But even as the rise of Nazism forces Reinhardt — whose music is considered degenerate under the Third Reich — to make a daring escape from Paris, he refuses to be silenced as his music becomes a form of protest. Django opens on April 6 at the Regent Square Theater.
Have a Nice Day – Harris Theater
A hard rain is about to fall on a small town in Southern China. In a desperate attempt to find money to save his fiancée’s failed plastic surgery, Xiao Zhang, a mere driver, steals a bag containing $1 million from his boss. News of the robbery spreads fast within the town and, over the course of one night, everyone starts looking for Xiao Zhang and his money. Liu Jian delivers a whirlwind neo-noir, cementing his place as a pioneering force in independent Chinese animation. Have a Nice Day open on April 6 at the Harris Theater.
Foxtrot – Manor Theatre
Michael and Dafna experience gut-wrenching grief when army officials show up at their home to announce the death of their son Jonathan. Michael becomes increasingly frustrated by overzealous mourning relatives and well-meaning army bureaucrats. While his sedated wife rests, Michael spirals into a whirlwind of anger only to experience one of life’s unfathomable twists – a twist that can only be rivaled by the surreal military experiences of his son. Foxtrot opens on April 20 at the Manor Theatre.
A Fantastic Woman – Regent Square Theater
Marina (Daniela Vega in a standout performance), a young aspiring singer and trans woman, and her older lover Orlando are planning for the future. When Orlando suddenly passes away, his family treats Marina with suspicion and threaten to throw her out of the flat she shared with Orlando. To them, her sexual identity is an aberration, a perversion. So Marina struggles for the right to be herself. She battles the very same forces that she has spent a lifetime fighting just to be the woman she is now. A Fantastic Woman opens on March 9 at the Regent Square Theater.
The Cured – Harris Theater
What happens when the undead return to life? In a world ravaged for years by a virus that turns the infected into zombie-like cannibals, a cure is at last found and the wrenching process of reintegrating the survivors back into society begins. Among the formerly afflicted is Senan (Sam Keeley), a young man haunted by the horrific acts he committed while infected. Welcomed back into the family of his widowed sister-in-law (Ellen Page), Senan attempts to restart his life—but is society ready to forgive him and those like him? Or will fear and prejudice once again tear the world apart? The Cured opens on March 9 at the Harris Theater.
Loveless – Manor Theatre
Zhenya and Boris are going through a vicious divorce marked by resentment, frustration, and recriminations. Already embarking on new lives, each with a new partner, they are impatient to start again, to turn the page – even if it means threatening to abandon their 12-year-old son Alexey. Until, after witnessing one of their fights, Alexey disappears. Loveless opens on March 30 at the Manor Theatre.
Faces Places – Row House Cinema
89-year old Agnes Varda, one of the leading figures of the French New Wave, and acclaimed 33-year-old French photographer and muralist JR teamed up to co-direct this enchanting documentary/road movie. Kindred spirits, Varda and JR share a lifelong passion for images and how they are created, displayed and shared. Together they travel around the villages of France in JR’s photo truck meeting locals, learning their stories and producing epic-size portraits of them. The photos are prominently displayed on houses, barns, storefronts and trains revealing the humanity in their subjects, and themselves. Faces Places documents these heart-warming encounters as well as the unlikely, tender friendship they formed along the way. Faces Places opens on January 5 at the Row House Cinema and will screen as part of the theater’s New Documentary Showcase.
Call Me By Your Name – Manor Theatre
In the summer of 1983, in the north of Italy, Elio Perlman, (Timothée Chalamet) a 17-year-old American spends his days in his family’s 17th-century villa lazily transcribing music and flirting with his friend Marzia (Esther Garrel). One day Oliver (Armie Hammer), a 24-year-old graduate student working on his doctorate arrives as the annual summer intern tasked with helping Elio’s father (Michael Stuhlbarg), an eminent professor specializing in Greco-Roman culture. Soon, Elio and Oliver discover a summer that will alter their lives forever. Directed by Luca Guadagnino and written by James Ivory, is based on the novel by André Aciman. Call Me By Your Name opens on January 19 at the Manor Theatre.
Mary and the Witch’s Flower – Row House Cinema
From Academy Award-nominated animator Hiromasa Yonebayashi comes a dazzling new adventure about a young girl named Mary, who discovers a flower that grants magical powers, but only for one night. Mary is an ordinary young girl stuck in the country with her Great-Aunt Charlotte and seemingly no adventures or friends in sight. She follows a mysterious cat into the nearby forest, where she discovers an old broomstick and the strange Fly-by-Night flower, a rare plant that blossoms only once every seven years and only in that forest. Together the flower and the broomstick whisk Mary above the clouds, and far away to Endor College – a school of magic run by headmistress Madam Mumblechook and the brilliant Doctor Dee. But there are terrible things happening at the school, and when Mary tells a lie, she must risk her life to try to set things right. Mary and the Witch’s Flower opens on January 19 at the Row House Cinema.
Lover for a Day – Regent Square Theater
After a devastating breakup, the only place 23-year-old Jeanne has to stay in Paris is the small flat of her father, Giles. But when Jeanne arrives, she finds that her father’s new girlfriend has moved in too: Arianne, a young woman her own age. Each is looking for their own kind of love in a city filled with possibilities. Directed by Philippe Garrel, Lover for a Day premiered in the Directors’ Fortnight at Cannes, where it was awarded the SACD prize from the French Writers and Directors Guild, and is an Official Selection of the 2017 New York Film Festival. Lover for a Day opens on January 19 at Regent Square Theater.
Churchill – Hollywood Theater & Manor Theatre
In June 1944, Allied Forces stand on the brink: a million soldiers are secretly assembled on the south coast of Britain, poised to invade Nazi-occupied Europe. One man stands in their way: Winston Churchill (Brian Cox). Fearful of repeating, on his disastrous command, the mass slaughter of 1915, when over 500,000 soldiers were killed on the beaches of Gallipoli. Exhausted by years of war and plagued by depression, Churchill is a shadow of the hero who has resisted Hitler’s Blitzkrieg. Should the D-Day landings fail, he is terrified he’ll be remembered as the architect of carnage. Only the unflinching support of Churchill’s brilliant, unflappable wife Clementine (Miranda Richardson) can halt the Prime Minister’s physical and mental collapse. Churchill opens on June 2 at the Hollywood Theater and on June 5 at the Manor Theatre.
My Cousin Rachel – Manor Theatre
Rachel Weisz stars in the dark romantic story of a young Englishman who plots revenge against his mysterious, beautiful cousin, believing that she murdered his guardian. But his feelings become complicated as he finds himself falling under the beguiling spell of her charms. My Cousin Rachel opens on June 9 at the Manor Theatre.
I, Daniel Blake – Regent Square Theater
The new film by British filmmaker Ken Loach won the Palme d’Or at the 2016 Cannes Film Festival. In it, 59-year-old Daniel Blake has worked as a joiner most of his life in Newcastle. Now, for the first time ever, he needs help from the State. He crosses paths with single mother Katie and her two young children, Daisy and Dylan. Katie’s only chance to escape a one-roomed homeless hostel in London has been to accept a flat in a city she doesn’t know, some 300 miles away. Daniel and Katie find themselves in no-man’s land, caught on the barbed wire of welfare bureaucracy as played out against the rhetoric of ‘striver and skiver’ in modern-day Britain. I, Daniel Blake opens on June 16 at the Regent Square Theater.
The Transfiguration – Hollywood Theater
Writer/director Michael O’Shea’s chilling, atmospheric debut feature follows troubled teen Milo who hides behind his fascination with vampire lore. When he meets the equally alienated Sophie, the two form a bond that begins to challenge Milo’s dark obsession, blurring his fantasy into reality. The Transfiguration opens on June 16 at the Hollywood Theater.
The Red Turtle – Regent Square Theater
Through the story of a man shipwrecked on a tropical island inhabited by turtles, crabs, and birds, The Red Turtle recounts the milestones in the life of a human being. The Red Turtle opens on March 3 at the Regent Square Theater.
XX – Hollywood Theater
The all-female helmed horror anthology features four dark tales written and directed by fiercely talented women. Annie Clark, also known as the musician St. Vincent, rocks her directorial debut with The Birthday Party. Karyn Kusama (The Invitation, Girlfight) exorcises Her Only Living Son. Roxanne Benjamin (Southbound) screams Don’t Fall. Jovanka Vuckovic (The Captured Bird) dares to open The Box. Award-winning animator Sofia Carrillo (La Casa Triste) wraps together four suspenseful stories of terror featuring a cast including Natalie Brown, Melanie Lynskey, Breeda Wool and Christina Kirk. XX opens on March 4 at the Hollywood Theater.
Kedi – Manor Theatre
Hundreds of thousands of Turkish cats roam the metropolis of Istanbul freely. For thousands of years, they’ve wandered in and out of people’s lives, becoming an essential part of the communities that make the city so rich. Claiming no owners, the cats of Istanbul live between two worlds, neither wild nor tame — and they bring joy and purpose to those people they choose to adopt. In Istanbul, cats are the mirrors to the people, allowing them to reflect on their lives in ways nothing else could. Kedi opens on March 24 at the Manor Theatre.
Raw – Hollywood Theater
Everyone in Justine’s family is a vet. And a vegetarian. At 16, she’s a brilliant and promising student. When she starts at veterinary school, she enters a decadent, merciless and dangerously seductive world. During the first week of hazing rituals, desperate to fit in whatever the cost, she strays from her family principals when she eats raw meat for the first time. Justine will soon face the terrible and unexpected consequences of her actions as her true self begins to emerge. Raw opens on March 24 at the Hollywood Theater.
Neruda – Harris Theater
It’s 1948 and the Cold War has reached Chile. In congress, Senator Pablo Neruda accuses the government of betrayal and is swiftly impeached by President Videla. Police Prefect Óscar Peluchonneau is assigned to arrest the poet. Neruda tries to flee the country with his wife Delia del Carril, but they are forced into hiding. In the struggle with his nemesis Peluchonneau, Neruda sees an opportunity to reinvent himself. He plays with the Prefect, leaving clues designed to make their game of cat-and-mouse more dangerous, more intimate. In this story of persecution, Neruda recognizes his own heroic possibilities: a chance to become both a symbol for liberty and a literary legend. Neruda opens on February 3 at the Harris Theater.
Things to Come – Regent Square Theater
Director Mia Hansen-Løve’s fifth feature follows Nathalie (Isabelle Huppert), a philosophy teacher at a Parisian high school. She is deeply passionate about her job and enjoys passing on the pleasure of thinking to others. Married with two children, she divides her time between her family, former students and her eccentric mother, leading a life of personal and intellectual fulfillment. Unexpectedly, Nathalie’s husband announces he is leaving her for another woman. With a newfound freedom suddenly thrust upon her, Nathalie must reinvent herself and establish a new way of living. Things to Come opens on February 3 at Regent Square Theater.
Julieta – Manor Theatre
In the latest feature from filmmaker Pedro Almodóvar, Julieta lives in Madrid with her daughter Antía. They both suffer in silence over the loss of Xoan, Antía’s father and Julieta’s husband. But at times grief doesn’t bring people closer, it drives them apart. When Antía turns 18 she abandons her mother, without a word of explanation. Julieta looks for her in every possible way, but all she discovers is how little she knows of her daughter. Julieta opens on February 10 at the Manor Theatre.
I Am Not Your Negro – Harris Theater
In 1979, James Baldwin wrote a letter to his literary agent describing his next project, Remember This House. The book was to be a revolutionary, personal account of the lives and successive assassinations of three of his close friends—Medgar Evers, Malcolm X and Martin Luther King, Jr. At the time of Baldwin’s death in 1987, he left behind only 30 completed pages of his manuscript. Now, in his incendiary new documentary, filmmaker Raoul Peck envisions the book Baldwin never finished. The result is a radical, up-to-the-minute examination of race in America, using Baldwin’s original words and flood of archival material. I Am Not Your Negro is a journey into black history that connects the Civil Rights movement to #BlackLivesMatter and questions black representation in Hollywood and beyond. I Am Not Your Negro opens on February 17 at the Harris Theater.
Toni Erdmann – Manor Theatre
Winfried doesn’t see much of his working daughter Ines. The suddenly student-less music teacher decides to surprise her with a visit after the death of his old dog. It’s an awkward move because serious career woman Ines is working on an important project as a corporate strategist in Bucharest. Enter flashy “Toni Erdmann” – Winfried’s smooth-talking alter ego. Disguised in a tacky suit, wig and fake teeth, Toni barges into Ines’ professional life, claiming to be her CEO’s life coach. As Toni, Winfried is bolder and doesn’t hold back, but Ines meets the challenge. The harder they push, the closer they become. In all the madness, Ines begins to understand that her eccentric father might deserve some place in her life after all. Toni Erdmann opens on February 24 at the Manor Theatre.
Goodnight Brooklyn - The Story of Death By Audio – Hollywood Theater
The feature-length film brings viewers inside the last underground venue for music and art in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, a neighborhood once defined by its cultural contributions to the city of New York. It chronicles the origins, community-building, influence, and ultimate closure of one of Brooklyn’s best DIY venues, ironically at the hands of a former champion of their efforts. Goodnight Brooklyn - The Story of Death By Audio opens on January 6 at the Hollywood Theater.
Silence – Regent Square Theater
The latest feature from Martin Scorsese tells the story of two Christian missionaries (Andrew Garfield and Adam Driver) who face the ultimate test of faith when they travel to Japan in search of their missing mentor (Liam Neeson) — at a time when Christianity was outlawed and their presence forbidden. The celebrated director’s 28-year journey to bring Shusaku Endo’s 1966 acclaimed novel to life. Silence opens on January 13 at Harris Theater.
20th Century Women – Manor Theatre
Acclaimed filmmaker Mike Mills presents a richly multilayered celebration of the complexities of women, family, time, and the connections we search for our whole lives. Set in 1979 Santa Barbara, the film follows Dorothea Fields (Annette Bening), a determined single mother in her mid-50s who is raising her adolescent son, Jamie (newcomer Lucas Jade Zumann) at a moment brimming with cultural change and rebellion. Dorothea enlists the help of two younger women in Jamie’s upbringing — via Abbie (Greta Gerwig), a free-spirited punk artist living as a boarder in the Fields’ home, and Julie (Elle Fanning), a savvy and provocative teenage neighbor. 20th Century Women opens on January 20 at the Manor Theatre.
Elle – Harris Theater
When Michelle (Isabelle Huppert), the CEO of a gaming software company, is attacked in her home by an unknown assailant, she refuses to let it alter her precisely ordered life. She manages crises involving her 75-year-old sex kitten mother, her imprisoned mass murderer father, her spoiled and immature son, her ex-husband and her lover, all with the same icy equanimity. This is the approach she brings to the situation when it appears that her assailant is not finished with her. As the mysterious stalker hovers in the shadows of her life, taunting her, Michelle cooly stalks him back. What emerges between Michelle and her stalker is a kind of game, a game that soon spirals out of control. Elle opens on January 20 at the Regent Square Theater.
Paterson – Manor Theatre
Paterson (Adam Driver), a New Jersey bus driver, adheres to a simple routine: he drives his daily route, observing the city as it drifts across his windshield and overhearing fragments of conversation swirling around him. He writes poetry into a notebook. He walks his dog. He stops in a bar and drinks exactly one beer. He goes home to his wife, Laura (Golshifteh Farahani). By contrast, Laura’s world is ever changing. New dreams come to her almost daily, each a different and inspired project. The latest feature from Jim Jarmusch quietly observes the triumphs and defeats of daily life, along with the poetry evident in its smallest details. Paterson opens on January 27 at the Manor Theatre.
The Handmaiden – Regent Square Theater
Park Chan-wook (Oldboy, Lady Vengeance, Stoker) presents a gripping and sensual tale of two women – a young Japanese Lady living on a secluded estate, and a Korean woman who is hired to serve as her new handmaiden, but is secretly plotting with a conman to defraud her of a large inheritance. Inspired by the novel Fingersmith by British author Sarah Waters, The Handmaiden borrows the most dynamic elements of its source material and combines it with Chan-wook’s singular vision to create an unforgettable viewing experience. The Handmaiden opens on December 9 at Regent Square Theater.
Tower – Harris Theater
On August 1st, 1966, a sniper rode the elevator to the top floor of the University of Texas Tower and opened fire, holding the campus hostage for 96 minutes. When the gunshots were finally silenced, the toll included 16 dead, three dozen wounded, and a shaken nation left trying to understand. Combining archival footage with rotoscopic animation in a dynamic, never-before-seen way, Tower reveals the action-packed untold stories of the witnesses, heroes and survivors of America’s first mass school shooting, when the worst in one man brought out the best in so many others. Tower opens on December 9 at the Harris Theater.
Evolution – Harris Theater
Ten-year-old Nicolas (Max Brebant) lives in a remote seaside village populated only by boys his age and adult women. But when he makes a disturbing discovery beneath the ocean waves—a dead boy with a red starfish on his stomach—Nicolas begins to question everything about his existence. The new film from writer-director Lucile Hadzihalilovic is awash in the haunting, otherworldly images of a nightmare. Evolution opens on December 26 at the Harris Theater.
Christine – Regent Square Theater
Rebecca Hall stars in director Antonio Campos’ story of a woman who finds herself caught in the crosshairs of a spiraling personal life and career crisis. Christine, always the smartest person in the room at her local Sarasota, Florida news station, feels like she is destined for bigger things and is relentless in her pursuit of an on-air position in a larger market. As an aspiring newswoman with an eye for nuance and an interest in social justice, she finds herself constantly butting heads with her boss (Tracy Letts), who pushes for juicier stories that will drive up ratings. Plagued by self-doubt and a tumultuous home life, Christine’s diminishing hope begins to rise when an on-air co-worker (Michael C. Hall) initiates a friendship which ultimately becomes yet another unrequited love. Disillusioned as her world continues to close in on her, Christine takes a dark and surprising turn. Christine opens on November 4th at the Regent Square Theater.
Moonlight – Manor Theatre
Filmmaker Barry Jenkins delivers a groundbreaking exploration of masculinity through the tender, heartbreaking story of a young man’s struggle to find himself, told across three defining chapters in his life as he experiences the ecstasy, pain, and beauty of falling in love while grappling with his own sexuality. Moonlight opens on November 11th at the Manor Theatre.
Certain Women – Regent Square Theater
Kelly Reichardt (Wendy and Lucy, Meek’s Cutoff) directs a remarkable ensemble cast in this look at three women striving to forge their own paths amidst the wide-open plains of the American Northwest: a lawyer (Laura Dern) who finds herself contending with both office sexism and a hostage situation; a wife and mother (Michelle Williams) whose determination to build her dream home puts her at odds with the men in her life; and a young law student (Kristen Stewart) who forms an ambiguous bond with a lonely ranch hand (newcomer Lily Gladstone). As their stories intersect in subtle but powerful ways, a portrait emerges of flawed, but strong-willed individuals in the process of defining themselves. Certain Women opens on November 25th at the Regent Square Theater.
The Eagle Huntress – Harris Theater
Actress Daisy Ridley narrates the story of Aisholpan, a real-life role model on an epic journey in a far away world. Follow this 13-year-old nomadic Mongolian girl as she battles to become the first female to hunt with a Golden Eagle in 2,000 years of male-dominated history. The Eagle Huntress opens on November 25th at the Harris Theater.