newfest 2017

7 Films We’re Excited to See at This Year’s Newfest, New York’s LGBTQ Film Festival

NewFest 2017, New York’s LGBT film festival, will be celebrating its 29th year from Oct. 19–24.

The six-day festival will feature over 100 films, panels and parties that reflect the LGBTQ experience, and Hornet is a sponsor!

Below, we pick seven films we’re excited to see at NewFest 2017:

1. Susanne Bartsch: On Top

A mesmerizingly expressive portrait of a fiercely individual New York countercultural icon, this doc candidly captures the titular “Queen of the Night” and patron saint of queer inclusion and advocacy with a commanding voice and sharp wit, much like its subject. This dynamic debut from directing duo Anthony&Alex captures the essence of Bartsch’s everyday balance and features LGBTQ nightlife luminaries RuPaul, Simon Doonan, Michael Musto and Amanda Lepore.


2. God’s Own Country

This winner of the Sundance World Cinema Directing Award finds a farmer’s son and a soulful migrant worker beginning a steamy, tumultuous relationship in the beautiful English countryside — a textured, gorgeous masterpiece.


3. Screwed

To celebrate the start of summer, 17-year-old Miku throws a wild party at his parent’s house, which quickly turns destructive. As punishment, Miku is forced to spend the rest of his summer with his provincial family at their secluded country cottage. In the rolling, pastoral Finnish countryside, Miku meets the alluring Elias. The two spend their summer inseparable, discovering themselves, their sexuality and each other.


4. 100 Men

Kiwi director Paul Oremland tracks down 100 men he’s slept with in this personal, often humorous look at changing attitudes toward homosexuality over the past 40 years. Oremland’s journey brings him closer to these men, helping him realize he’s witnessing a revolution.


5. After Louie

In this love letter to New York City, Sam (Alan Cumming) is an artist and activist from ACT UP who lived through the early years of the HIV epidemic and is struggling with survivor’s guilt. He’s bewildered by the younger generation of gay men, until he meets the seductive Braeden (Zachary Booth) at a bar late one night. Their pants quickly come down and, eventually, so does Sam’s guard. An intergenerational relationship blossoms between them — reawakening Sam’s artistic soul and reviving his wilted heart.


6. Discreet

The director of I Want Your Love and Interior. Leather Bar. returns with another provocative feature pushing buttons and envelopes. Filmmaker Alex wanders the rural countryside, listening to hate-filled talk radio and indulging in anonymous sex in video booths. After an uncomfortable visit with his mother, Alex seeks a figure from his past, slowly dying in a mysterious compound far from society. This blistering exploration of trauma reverberates from childhood to adulthood, offering neither easy answers nor simple explanations. We also reviewed the film and interviewed its director earlier this year.


7. Freak Show

Based on the novel by James St. James, this witty coming-of-age tale features a superb ensemble cast including Bette Midler, Laverne Cox and Abigail Breslin. Fearless teenager Billy Bloom (Alex Lawther) waves his freak flag high when he runs for homecoming queen at his conservative high school after being bullied.


For information on NewFest 2017, head here.