18 LGBTQ Films to Check Out at L.A.'s Asian Pacific Film Festival
Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival
The Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival returns this week for their 35th edition. The popular festival will showcase 200 films including narrative features, documentaries, and shorts. Twenty-four of those films are made by female directors, marking a milestone of inclusion for the festival. There are 18 films featuring LGBTQIA characters in the festival, as well. These films, ranging from a drama about a transgender woman in Pakistan to a bisexual threesome gone wrong, will be playing on the big screen between May 3-May 12. Take a peek at the films in our gallery and then go enjoy the festival.
I Think She Likes You
Justine and Julia bring home a random guy at the bar for a sexy night together. Instead of the escape fantasy that was promised at the bar, Jake ends up entering into the relationship drama of the two women. Directed by Bridey Elliot Playing May 7 at 9 p.m.
On the eve of her wedding anniversary, empty-nester Sujata Chopra attempts to find some joy in her broken marriage, until she learns about the passing of her childhood companion's spouse on Facebook. Having been disconnected from this woman for over 30 years over a misunderstanding, Sujata finds the courage to reach out to send her condolences. They reconnect, sparking friction when Sujata's controlling husband, Dr. Chopra, finds out. Directed by Gayatri Bajpai, Nirav Bhakta Playing May 3 at 7 p.m.
Speak Easy, B
During a therapy session, B struggles to vocalize the source of her depression. She embarks on a tender journey inside her mind, with the desert serving as the stage for poetic confrontation. Through dreamy vignettes, the film weaves together her struggle to balance gender, sexuality, and identity. Directed by Becca Park, Jun Shimizu Playing May 9 at 8:45 p.m.
An American-born Chinese teenager tries to handle her possible coming out when her baby half-sister seems to have stolen the attention of the entire family. Directed by Anna Chi Playing May 8 at 6:30 p.m.
The Night Before
On the night before her wedding, Shae, a deaf Indian-American bride, pays a visit to her ex, Nikki,whom she ghosted. Upon seeing each other for the first time after years, they confront bottled up emotions and unanswered questions. Directed by Mragendra Singh Playing May 8 at 9:15 p.m.
Jim's visiting home for the first time in years and has nothing to show for his time overseas. Old tensions come to a head when he confronts his homophobic sister over a deeply dysfunctional family dinner. Jim learns that the first step to finding your path is admitting you are lost. Directed by Nick Neon Playing May 7 at 9 p.m.
Rani is a socially outcast transgender woman who sets out to take care of an abandoned child. Set on the streets of Pakistan, she is determined to do the right thing amid waves of challenges. Directed by Hammad Rizvi Playing May 7 at 9 p.m.
Heavily inspired by the Orlando nightclub shooting, the writer/director, who is also a mass shooting survivor and a lesbian, made her MFA thesis film about a closeted medical student named Saba, who risks being outed to her family when she is targeted in a mass shooting at a gay nightclub. Directed by Mahaliyah Ayla O Playing May 7 at 9 p.m.
Hao, a chubby gay man, works as a janitor at a gay spa. For him, romantic relationships are an unreachable dream. One day, an attractive customer, Kai, walks into the place, and Hao has the opportunity to massage him. However, things do not go as smoothly as Hao expected. Directed by Yu Jhi-han Playing May 7 at 9 p.m.
Engaged follows Darren, who keeps trying -- and failing -- to propose to his boyfriend, Elliot. When their relationship is put into an uncomfortable spotlight during a friend's outrageous engagement party, Darren realizes he actually might be self-sabotaging himself due to unresolved insecurities about his sexuality. Directed by David Scala Playing May 7 at 9 p.m.
Glorious Mrs. Kim
The film explores the gap between immigrants who leave their identities behind to adapt to a foreign country, versus their children, who as second generations, freely pursue what they want. Glorious Mrs. Kim raises questions on if the Internet's community-building nature can be relevant for older immigrants and LGBTQ acceptance. Directed by Monica Cho Playing May 6 at 8:30pm
Spinsterhood explores the clash between cultures, beliefs, and generations. Sara Chatterjee, a 29-year-old first generation Indian-American, is terrified of coming out to her parents. Meanwhile, her parents are horrified she's "single" at 29. Sara navigates coming-out, Indian traditions, and her parents' obsessive matchmaking. Directed by Jhanvi Motla Playing May 6 at 8:30 p.m.
Queer glimpses of a wayward woman captured in bits of emulsion lifted from stray reels of a 35mm Asian drama. Directed by Tina Takemoto Playing May 6 at 6 p.m.
My Friend Michael Jones
A high school misfit with severe OCD forms an unlikely bond with a popular classmate through a shared passion for music and dance. Directed by Ian Leaupepe, Samson Rambo Playing May 8 at 9 p.m.
Getting dumped sucks, so does being 16. But sometimes 16 doesn't seem so bad when you remember your first kiss, or that time your crush asked you on a first date, or that she turned out to be the first girl you ever fell in love with. Directed by Kristal Chan Playing May 4 at 11 a.m.
Marriage is already complicated. Mix in the birth of your first child and suddenly the small moments are completely magnified beyond control. For Aniket and Leah, the specifics of what is normal has changed. Director Mragendra Singh's effortlessly strong feature film debut, explores this evolving notion of returning to the status quo. Directed by Mragendra Singh Playing May 8 at 9:15 p.m.
Leitis In Waiting
The story of Joey Mataele and the Tonga Leitis, an intrepid group of native transgender women fighting a rising tide of religious fundamentalism in their South Pacific Kingdom. Their emotional journey reveals what it means to be different in a society ruled by tradition. Directed by Dean Hamer, Hinaleimoana Wong-Kalu, Joe Wilson Playing May 8 at 6 p.m.
Linh Phung is the star of a traveling opera troupe deep in debt. Dung is the enforcer come to collect. After an unlikely friendship forms between the two, Linh Phung learns how a lived life is necessary for art and Dung follows art back to a life worth living. Directed by Leon Le Playing May 4 at 6 p.m.