Out This Week: Queerama

Queerama is a brand-new film created from a treasure trove of archives at the British Film Institute. The story traverses a century of gay experiences, encompassing persecution and prosecution, injustice, love and desire, identity, secrets, forbidden encounters, sexual liberation and pride. The soundtrack weaves the lyrics and music of John Grant and Hercules & Love Affair with iconic images and guides us intimately into the relationships, desires, fears and expressions of gay men and women in the 20th century – a century of incredible change.

Starting with Different From the Others, which, released in 1919, features the first gay relationship depicted on film, Queerama offers a wealth of unknown newsreel and amateur footage from the 1920s and 30s; the subtextual references in 1940s cinema; the arrests and prosecutions of gay men for ‘gross indecency’ in the 50s; the early gay rights marches and decriminalisation of the 1960s and 70s; the Pride movement and AIDS crisis in the 80s and 90s; the sexual liberation of the 2000s; the British queer and transgender scene and the chemsex, gay parenting and marriage campaign of recent years.

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