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London Gay & Lesbian Film Festival 2013: Ones To Watch

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London Gay & Lesbian Film Festival 2013: Ones To Watch film still

LWLies previews this year's LLGFF programme, which returns to BFI Southbank this March.

The London Lesbian & Gay Film Festival makes a welcome return to the BFI Southbank next month, once again bringing the best in queer cinema from around the world, both contemporary and classic, to the capital. Running 4-24 March, the festival boasts over 100 features, as well as a host of special events, workshops, musical events and special guest appearances.

As with the London Film Festival, the LLGFF programme has been divided into several new, handy sections – 'Hearts', 'Bodies' and 'Minds'. Each strand brings together films containing similar themes, enabling visitors to easily select the titles that really appeal to them. Here are our picks from this year's programme...

I Am Divine

This year’s festival opens with a truly fascinating-looking documentary about the life of Harris Glenn Milstead, more commonly known as notorious drag performer Divine. The film follows Divine’s journey from a conservative Baltimore upbringing to becoming John Waters' muse, and one of the LGBT community's all-time cult figures.

Petunia

This dark comedy by the director of Fat Girls has been described as a 'Woody Allen-esque' tale of family dysfunction and sexual identity. Set in New York, the film offers a quirky, true to life view of twenty-first-century relationships and a cast that includes American Pie’s Eddie Kaye Thomas, Thora Birch and Brittany Snow.

Interior. Leather Bar.

James Franco's latest Sundance pleaser sees him attempt to recreate 40 minutes that were controversially cut from the 1980 film Cruising to avoid an X rating, along with award-winning San Francisco filmmaker Travis Mathews. Shot in just a day and a half and blurring the line between reality and fiction, Interior. Leather Bar. promises to be a unique cinematic experience.

How To Survive A Plague

This Oscar-nominated documentary charts the early years of the AIDS epidemic and the incredible activism efforts of the groups ACT UP and TAG. The film chronicles the struggle of these groups to defy the resistant government and help turn AIDS into a largely manageable condition with new drugs. Early buzz suggests it's a moving and inspiring watch.

Mosquita Y Mari

Youthful lesbian desire is explored in this coming-of-age story and Independent Spirit Award nominee about the relationship between two Chicana high school girls. Young leads Fenessa Pineda and Venecia Troncoso have been hailed as perfectly capturing the awkwardness and intensity of that first love experience.

Unfit: Ward Vs. Ward

This film documents the unbelievable true case of Mary Ward, a lesbian mother who lost custody of her child to her ex-husband and convicted murderer, John, in 1995. The court’s primary reason for this decision? Believing the child deserved 'a chance to grow up in a non-lesbian world'. A tale of great injustice that looks hugely powerful and thought-provoking.

For the full LLGFF programme head to bfi.org.uk 

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