Princess Cyd, and High Fantasy
The Reel 2 Real International Film Festival for Youth takes place April 8 – 14, 2108. Two films are of special interest to the LGBTQ2+ community. Princess Cyd may be the most underrated film as it has flown under the radar of many major festivals, but has begun to pop up on many critics lists as one of the best of 2017. The film addresses a young woman who finds her sexuality, and also addresses the beauty, strength, and resilience of her middle aged aunt. A true coming of age story.
High Fantasy is an exciting and challenging film coming from South Africa. The film deals with identity politics by creating a narrative where the main character’s switch bodies. Co-written and shot by the cast of the film, High Fantasy brings a youth perspective to important topics.
Though apartheid formally ended in 1991, the weight of South Africa’s colonial roots persists today. Lexi and a groups of new friends embark on a road trip to her grandfather’s farm. On the way, it is revealed that generations ago, Lexi’s white family stole swaths of land from black South Africans. Tensions escalate as they explore the outcomes of the country’s racist past. Literally and figuratively inhabiting the discomfort of the unfamiliar, each person learns more than they expect from the others experience.
High Fantasy’s biting satire is anchored in a stark realism which hits close to home. A little known fact about apartheid is that its architects used elements of Canada’s Indian Act as a model to develop and implement segregation. Screening date, Saturday April 14, 7 PM link to festival films, dates and tickets here.
Princess Cyd (Canadian Theatrical Premiere)
Critics have noted that writer/director Stephen Cone has crafted the most underrated film of the year. Sixteen year old Cyd’s estranged aunt Miranda agrees to host her in Chicago over the summer. Miranda is low key, an unaccomplished author, and tethered to the home she grew up in.
Cyd discovers new experiences and learns she is more open than she thought. Unlike most films about young queer characters, Princess Cyd is written with all the positivity, richness and complexity that gender and sexuality deserve. The film is funny, subtle, insightful, and the vulnerability and revelatory essence proudly exclaims that we should celebrate each other. Screening dates: Friday April 13, 10 AM and 7:30 PM link to festival films, dates and tickets here.