Mezipatra festival covers LGBTQ themes

The 19th edition of the festival takes place in three Prague theaters

The 19th edition of Mezipatra Queer Film Festival will take place in Prague from Nov. 8 to 15, with films at cinemas Lucerna, Světozor and Pilotů. The festival then moves to Brno from Nov. 16 to 23.

Almost all of the films are in English or have English subtitles.

The oldest festival on LGBTQ+ themes in Central and Eastern Europe has fiction and documentary films as well as a side program of discussions, exhibitions and parties with DJs.

This year's theme is Beyond Reality. “Compared to the last two editions, which focused on the wider socio-cultural context, our theme selection returns to film itself. Or, more precisely, to its ability to depict our dreams, desires, and hidden visions,” Mezipatra's program director Sandra Hezinová said.

Some 10 live-action feature films will compete in this year’s main competition. These include L'Animale, a coming-of-age drama by the Austrian director Katharina Mückstein; Hard Paint, which won Teddy Award at this year's Berlinale; and Girl, a Belgian drama that won the Queer Palm at the Cannes film festival.

Several guests are coming to present their films. Apart from Katharinak Mückstein, these include Polish director Olga Chajdas with her feature debut, Nina, about various forms of love; Steve McLean, the director of Postcards from London; and American director Jeremiah Zagar, who will introduce We the Animals together with the author of the original book and screenplay, Justin Torres.

Five films are in the documentary section. The French-German film Game Girls deals with poverty, homelessness, and drug addiction. The struggle with bodies' limitations is the subject of A Deal with the Universe. Man Made shows four participants of the only body-building competition for trans men. The Dutch documentary Genderblend depicts the lives of five young genderfluid people. An overview of American lesbian cinema can be seen in Dykes, Camera, Action!.

There is another competition with 31 short films. The festival will also show older films in a retrospective section. A non-competitive section will examine alternative forms of family and parenthood.

The accompanying program invites visitors discussions in the Patra community café as well as to parties. This year's highlight will be Fata Morgana, the Nov. 10 party in Ankali club in Vršovice. The headliners will be DJs Acado from Berlin and DJ Oda from Kosovo.

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