HomeAsian AmericansSan Francisco LGBT Film Festival Highlights Asian Films and Filmmakers

San Francisco LGBT Film Festival Highlights Asian Films and Filmmakers

Front Cover
Front Cover

By Zara Zhi
AsAmNews Staff Writer

Frameline, the San Francisco International LGBT Film Festival, commences on June 16 and will feature a number of API artists. The festival has been around since 1977 and is the oldest and largest of its kind in the world, drawing around 75,000 attendees each year.

Frameline takes place around the same time as the San Francisco Gay Pride Festival and runs until June 26.

This year, 19 films by, for, or about Asians and Asian Americans will be shown at the festival.

FRONT COVER / DIR Ray Yeung / 2015 / USA / 88 min

Set against NYC’s cutthroat fashion world, this stylish romance is both charming and insightful as it traces the culture clash (and smoldering sparks) between a Chinese American photo stylist and the handsome Chinese movie star he is assigned to make over.

SPA NIGHT / DIR Andrew Ahn / 2016 / USA / 93 min / Showcase Film

The LA air is thick with sublimated desire and frustrated yearning in Andrew Ahn’s deeply felt feature debut, a touching study of a virginal, closeted teenager wrestling with his Korean-born parents’ expectations and the forbidden, mysterious allure of men’s bodies.

LOEV / DIR Sudhanshu Saria / 2015 / India / 90 min

Young musician Sahil drops everything, including his boyfriend, to go on a holiday trip with his old friend Jai, only to discover that bubbling tensions and secrets threaten to derail his life.

INSIDE THE CHINESE CLOSET / DIR Sophia Luvarà / 2015 / Netherlands / 72 min

Caught between a new gay consciousness in China and deeply rooted family pressures, Andy and Cherry attempt to maintain the illusion of heterosexual family life. Their efforts to resolve this conflict have a quiet but unshakable integrity.

IRRAWADDY MON AMOUR / DIRS Nicola Grignani, Valeria Testagrossa, & Andrea Zambelli / 2015 / Italy / 58 min

In this colorfully immersive documentary, trans activist and shaman Myo Nyunt dares to organize a marriage ceremony in a unique gay-friendly village in the heart of Myanmar/Burma, where the brutal military junta severely penalizes same-sex relationships.

OUT RUN / DIRS S. Leo Chiang & Johnny Symons / 2016 / USA / 75 min

Documentarians S. Leo Chiang and Johnny Symons turn an incisive international lens on the only LGBT political party in the world—the Ladlad Party of the Philippines, where beauty salons become campaign chapters and dubious party alliances are the norm.

OutRun 1min from Walking Iris Media on Vimeo.


DO NOT THINK FOR A MOMENT / DIRS Adria Siu & Vivian Wang / USA / 4 min

Challenging stereotypes of gender, sexuality, and race, three Asian American women share their experiences, frustrations, and identity amid the backdrop of San Francisco’s Castro District and other neighborhoods.

GAYSIANS / DIR Vicky Du / 2015 / USA / 13 min

Capturing diverse portraits of queer and trans Asian Americans, Gaysians is an illuminating patchwork documentary that explores relationships with family and culture.

Tickets are sold online, but discounts, priority admission to screenings and other benefits can be acquired by becoming a member of Frameline, which costs $50 a year.

Passes to the festival include all Castro Theatre showings, weekday matinee showings and entry into various parties, including the opening and closing night galas.


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