Season Three of the Dublin Film Qlub is out … and it bites!
Marvel, as filmmakers John Huston, George Cukor, Michael Curtiz direct big name actors Marlon Brando, Lauren Bacall, Frank Sinatra, Elizabeth Taylor, Kirk Douglas, Lee Remick in a season of lesser-known film classics!
The newest installment of the Dublin Film Qlub will offer film fans another exclusive selection of fantastic queer films which are either little known or completely forgotten, or which have failed to get the attention they deserve.
The Film Qlub is calling this season the “Evil Season: Mad, Bad, and Dangerous to Know” and promise that the next ten screenings will be just that: “Mad, bad, and dangerous to know”, which is how Lord Byron was described by an ex-lover, Caroline Lamb.
After their roller-coaster Season Two (“Around the World in the ’80s”) the Qlub travels back in time to the 1940s, ’50s and ’60s. (They’ll stop in 1968, the year Stonewall changed history).
With the new Season, the Dublin Film Qlub takes a look at some gloriously queer films from Hollywood, made under heavy censorship but which managed to tell amazing stories in exciting new ways. By contrast, they’ll also look at the freedom of European films of the period, addressing homosexuality with a mater-of-factness which is often surprising.
So, what can we expect?
The madness kicks off with director Jacques Tourneur’s Cat People, a thrilling tale about the power of sexuality to unsettle social norms.
Not as well known as it should be, this film stands amongst the most beautiful, exciting, original, and provocative films ever made, according to the organisers. And it’s a lesbian classic.
Val Lewton, who wrote the story and produced the movie, knew all about lesbians: he’d been raised by a famous one, his aunt Alla Nazimova, a superstar of the silent screen and the daring mastermind behind the queer film, Salomé (1923).
After 1930 in the USA, with the Hays Film Censorship Code in place, it became almost impossible to discuss sexuality (or politics) on film, so people like Val Lewton had to get really creative. Enter “Irena”, a Serbian woman from a strange race of creatures, half-human and (unknown to the world) half panther.
Does that sound daft? Well, we’re told that the film is actually very stylish, the performances are flawless, the camera work and editing are magical, and the story is so compelling that you’ll be glued to the screen from start to finish.
Irena knows it is not in her nature to marry, because she is likely to kill her husband when her “true self” returns. When she foolishly ties the knot with unsuspecting Oliver, not only she finds it impossible to have sex with him, but she can’t help herself either from ‘hunting’ women – including complete strangers in public swimming pools and desserted night streets.
Actress Simone Simon (who went on to make an openly lesbian film, Olivia), is absolutely magnetic. But Elizabeth Russell steals the show – as a fellow panther alerted by her gaydar, who enigmatically approaches Irena: “Are you my sister?”
The Dublin Film Qlub predicts that after this screening you’ll be uttering those very words to unsuspecting panthers and punters in your nearest tavern. (Perhaps in Serbian.)
What? Dublin Film Qlub’s EVIL SEASON: “MAD, BAD, AND DANGEROUS TO KNOW!
When? Launches 20th October 2012 at 3pm with a screening of Cat People
Where? New Theatre (entrance through Connolly Books), 43 East Essex street, Temple Bar, Dublin
How much? Day membership: €8.00. Free tea & coffee.
Dublin Film Qlub: