By Lucas Pontes Almeida
The Diego Rivera Theater was full of energy and excitement on Thursday, April 26 when the Queer Resource Center hosted its Sixth Annual Film Festival displaying a series of diverse and glamorous films from local independent filmmakers, City College students and from award-winning filmmaker Marc Huestis.
Huestis was a City College student in the mid 1970s, and was invited back to participate in this year’s film festival. He showcased three films that highlighted phases of his career and personal life.
The films displayed by Huestis had a wide variety of topics including “Unity” a film about the prosecution of lesbians and gays in Nazi Germany, an award-winning documentary on Chuck Solomon and the AIDS epidemic in the ‘80s, and a documentary titled “Whatever Happened to Susan Jane” where Huestis describes the PunkRock, New Wave, New Age scene of the ‘80s.
“I wanted to show it (“Unity”) as sort of an inspiration for students,” Huestis said. “I’m a firm believer of the Nike motto which is “Just Do It” — in every sense, just do it, just make films, if you want to be a filmmaker just make them, no matter the criticism no matter how hard it is, no matter the amount of money that you have, no matter whatever … if you love it, you do it.”
The third and last part of the festival unveiled the work of independent filmmakers and City College students who had the opportunity to show their work and share their inspiration with the audience present.
City College student and filmmaker Traci Wrycza wrote and produced “Waking Hour” a short film portraying an emotional relationship between two lesbian women. Wrycza describes the end of the film as a “goofy punch” where a family visiting a cemetery sees two women making out on the ground near a grave.
Britannic Zane, another City College student presented a six-minute documentary about what the Queer Resource Center is all about.
“I enjoyed it,” Darren Girard said. “Britannic is a great guy, I enjoyed being part of the documentary and the QRC is a great place, so I was happy to put my face to it.”
Girard, a member of the QRC, said he was glad he could share his thoughts and tell others that everyone is welcome and that the QRC is a safe place where everyone’s invited.
English professor and QRC faculty advisor Jennifer Worley was thrilled with the variety of outstanding films displayed at this year’s festival.
“It was great, I’ve just been so happy with the quality of the films the past few years and Brit (Zane) has just done an amazing job,” Worley said.
“I’m really happy to have a whole bunch of different kinds of student films — like this program tonight. The variety was amazing to me and also Marc Huestis’ films earlier were really fantastic. It was really an honor to have him.”
By Lucas Pontes Almeida