This fine two-part series sets out to redress the Anglo- and Eurocentric bias in queer cinema, and the genuinely far-flung selections range from the first sub-Saharan gay movie (Mohamed Camara’s Dakan) to a program of pop-cult deconstructions by Mexican video artist Ximena Cuevas. Asia is amply represented, by The River (perhaps Tsai Ming-liang’s most shocking psychosexual provocation) and Lan Yu (an elliptical romance—and the only overtly gay film—from Stanley Kwan), as well as a diverse Southeast Asian contingent. Yonfan’s Bugis Street, a transvestite melodrama from Singapore, is not much more than a mere curiosity, but there’s an encore performance for Apichatpong Weerasethakul’s lovesick daydream Tropical Malady, perhaps unparalleled in its lovely, matter-of-fact depiction of a same-sex relationship; chances are the real discovery for local audiences will be Malaysian director Amir Muhammad’s short Pangyau, a dreamy reverie on sexual, racial, and religious difference. Part two of the series runs in September.
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on June 27, 2006