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  • Writer's pictureDelven Shaw

LGBT Films from The Criterion Channel

The Criterion Channel is an excellent place to catch up on both new films and classics you may have missed. Their collection is extensive, often curated into wonderful programs, like the Starring Glenda Jackson, Female Gaze: Women Directors + Women Cinematographers, Directed by Alfred Hitchcock, Italy Uncloseted, and Sundance Class of ’92: The Year Indie Exploded.

For films of LGBTQ interest, there is a bounty of contemporary classics such as Querelle. Fox And His Friends, Weekend. The Living End, The Incredible Adventures Of Two Girls In Love. Go Fish, Rope, Swoon, Sunday Bloody Sunday, Paris Is Burning, Criterion Channel also is the place to find historical classics with gay characters or themes, such as Rope, Suddenly Last Summer, and Derek Jarman’s Edward II. To complete the picture there are experimental works and new documentaries like Truman And Tennessee. You will find plenty of ways to be entertained on a snowy weekend.

Here are some of the shorts that I recommend heartily:

RELUCTANTLY QUEER is a spectacular and elegant short featuring a young black man writing a letter to the mother he longs to love in Ghana. Kwame Edwin Otu’s voiceover accompanies simple images of a man showering or lounging nude with his lover. But the beautiful text, which connects that journey of slaves from his country centuries ago to his experience as a black man today, will resonate with many who are ‘incurring physic carnage’ in this ‘daunting and haunting’ tale. The 8-minute film is directed by Akosua Adoma Owusu. 2016.


DIRTY, directed by Matthew Puccini, is a sweet, perhaps gasp-inducing romance of a young couple ditching school to navigate some personal time. The loss of innocence is surprising yet deepened by the emotionally raw work of actors Morgan Sullivan, Manny Dunn. This snapshot of young love with a big heart has a long-lasting impact. 2020.

Read more about Matthew Puccini and DIRTY here.


-SHIP is a masterpiece, packing tremendous emotional power into this 12-minute film directed by Terrance Daye. Antonio Watson is terrific as Jeremiah; a young boy who experiences many collisions of emotion on the day of his cousin’s funeral. Revelations abound, the pain is deep, but the visuals are overlayed with beautiful gospel singing, and the power of the family’s love and fortitude. • 2020


WREN BOYS, directed by Harry Lighton is a treat, taking twists and turns both unexpected and unexplained. On the day after Christmas, an old Irish priest drives his uncouth nephew to a prison, where joy and terror follow. Starring Lalor Roddy, Diarmuid Noyes, Fionn Walton, WREN BOYS is one of the best films I saw this year. 2017


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