The Neuchâtel International Fantastic Film Festival (NIFFF) unveils its SCREAM QUEER, retrospective dedicated to the representation of LGBTIQ+ culture in genre cinema. As part of the festival’s 21st edition (1 – 9 July), this never-seen-before programme will include about twenty titles that will shine a light on fantasy or fanciful representations of homosexuality and trans identity through imaginary worlds. From the “big bad queer” to the celebration of differences, the NIFFF has found inspiration in a rich cinematic corpus to put into perspective varied visions and fantasies from the past and the present to revisit them in the light of a contemporary idea of fantastic cinema and queer culture. Our first special guest, Oliver Sim, the singer and bass player of the British band The xx, will be exclusively introducing HIDEOUS (Yann Gonzalez, 2022) and will be given a carte blanche. The full retrospective, events, and guests list will be made public during the June 16th press conference.
FANTASY FILMS – FLUID AND TRANSFORMATIVE
As a fertile ground for fluidity and transformation, fantasy films have always freely borne witness to the fears and concerns of their time. With SCREAM QUEER, the NIFFF reviews various representations of LGBTIQ+ communities through the genre’s history. In turns concealed, violent, mysterious or celebrated, queer culture has existed in various forms throughout film history. Thanks to the ability of fantasy films to step away from the real, it has also been able to question our relationship with otherness. The twenty or so selected titles will put into perspective various queer figures in the history of genre cinema to offer a rich overview.
Developed in collaboration with Spanish journalist Javier Parra (writer of SCREAM QUEER : La representación LGTBIQ+ en el cine de terror published by Dos Bigotes), the retrospective will be an opportunity to rediscover iconic figures of the LGBTIQ+ community since the beginning of the 20th century, which sometimes became that in spite of their creators’ intent. From the cult Norman Bates in PSYCHO (Alfred Hitchcock, 1960) to the bloody and sensual Countess Bathory in DAUGHTERS OF DARKNESS (Harry Kumel, 1971), to the terrifying lovers of BOUND (Lilly & Lana Wachowski, 1996), and the eternal trans identity of ORLANDO (Sally Potter, 1992) or the main character of THELMA (Joachim Trier, 2017) who is looking for her identity, this is an opportunity to discover classics from another angle and to comprehend the positive evolution in terms of treatment. This focus will also be a good opportunity to experience the bliss of watching films that transform the genre’s tropes, like the two movies that will be shown at the « Dur à queer » slasher night, one of which being HELLBENT (Paul Etheredge, 2004).
BOUND (Lilly & Lana Wachowski, 1996) :A former prison inmate and her lover have the perfect plan: To steal millions from the mob and frame a crook for it. A dizzying first film from the directors of THE MATRIX.
HELLBENT (Paul Etheredge, 2004) :It’s Halloween in Los Angeles and a group of friends is hellbent on having fun and picking up guys. Just one problem: A killer is hiding among these new friends with benefits.
DAUGHTERS OF DARKNESS (Harry Kumel, 1971) : In a deserted hotel, a couple meets a mysterious, bloodthirsty countess. A unique take on the immortal myth starring a beautiful, sensual Delphine Seyrig.
ORLANDO (Sally Potter, 1992) : The whimsical, free-spirited Orlando lives his transidentity through the centuries with nonchalance and fluidity. The Virginia Wolfe adaptation revealed Swinton as a unique, stimulating actress.
PSYCHO (Alfred Hitchcock, 1960) : Norman Bates’ motel reopens exceptionally for a queer reading of the most famous serial killer of all time. Cutting-edge filmmaking from Hitchcock.
THELMA (Joachim Trier, 2017) :A devout young woman leaves the deep countryside of the Norwegian seaside to start her studies. An unforeseen attraction is going to awaken an unknown and dark power within her.
GET THE MONSTERS OUT: OLIVER SIM AND HIDEOUS
In addition to the SCREAM QUEER guests, the NIFFF is delighted to announce that The xx singer Oliver Sim will be in attendance. For his first solo project, the British musician will introduce an exclusive showing of HIDEOUS, a new musical directed by Yann Gonzalez that takes us to a fearsome world of 80s horror movies aesthetics. Oliver Sim will also have carte blanche to show films in relation to the retrospective.
SCREAM QUEER PARTY AT THE SWISS FILM ARCHIVE
Tuesday May 31st, Lausanne
Heralding the start of the festival’s 21st edition, the NIFFF invites audience members to attend a special event on Tuesday, May 31st, in collaboration with the Cinémathèque Suisse. A great way to (re)discover two contrasting visions of queer culture, with the dream-like tragedy HEAVENLY CREATURES (Peter Jackson, 1994), and the romantic, gothic film DER SAMURAI (Till Kleinert, 2014).
COLLABORATION WITH PINK APPLE
Wednesday, June 8th, Zürich
The NIFFF is also joining forces with the Pink Apple Festival, which 25th edition is presently taking place. Pink Apple is holding a special screening of HELLRAISER as part of Uto Goes Pink! on June 8th (Cinema Uto, Zürich). It will also have a carte blanche during the NIFFF.