Following the huge success of Toscana Pride 2016, our city keeps on shining with all the colours of the rainbow thanks to the Florence Queer Festival. Founded in 2002, it has since grown to become the largest film event of its kind in Italy and has been part of 50 Giorni di Cinema – Florence's annual international film festival – since 2007.
The fourteenth edition features more than 30 films focusing on LGBTQI issues. Sex and the Silver Gay traces the private lives of a group of elderly people. MAJOR! is a touching documentary about the life of Miss Major – a black transgender woman, former inmate and activist – who has fought for the rights of trans women for over 40 years.
In such a delicate period for the LGBTQI community, two films have particular emotional resonance. You'll Never Be Alone is a beautiful story of a father that learns to accept and love his gay teenage son. The Italian film Né Giulietta, Né Romeo explores similar themes: it’s a bittersweet comedy about a young teenage boy who comes out to his family and faces unexpected consequences.
Another Italian feature is the documentary Varichina, highlighting the incredible life of Lorenzo “Varichina” De Santis, who was the first openly gay man in his small town in Puglia, in the south of Italy. The film pays tribute to a brave and singular character who refused to hide his sexuality and instead lived his life unapologetically.
Italian feminism movements are also celebrated in a riveting documentary tracing Lina Mangiacapre's life. Mangiacapre was one of the key figures of the Italian feminist movement, an eclectic, visionary artist who founded the Le Nemesiache collective.
The winners of the Best Movie and Best Short Movie prizes will be revealed on November 15 with a special cerimony at La Compagnia – a beautiful cinema in the heart of the historic centre, recently restored and now hosting all the 50 Giorni di Cinema events for the first time.
Florence Queer Festival highlights not only movies, but also theatre, music, entertainment and art. Queer Clubbing is an exhibition that retraces a century of LGBT nightlife through posters, flyers, commercials and photos from Europe, USA and the rest of the world. Head to Ireos (via dei Serragli 3) to take this journey through years of parties, clubs and social life with curiosities and eye-candy. There are also book-based events, including public lectures, meet-and-greets and debates about various issues, spanning AIDS, homophobia and the culture of Grindr.
Florence Queer Festival offers an occasion to talk openly about the movement for LGBTQI rights, but it is also a chance to continue celebrating the beauty of cultural, sexual and social diversity. For full program details, see the website.