Pooja Savansukha ’15
The 15th EROS Film Festival took place at Trinity Colleges’ Cinestudio, last week. The event was sponsored by EROS (Encouraging Respect Of all Sexualities), Trinity’s LGBT/straight student alliance, and showcased a varied selection of LGBT feature films and documentaries that would appeal to all film lovers. These films included “The Last Match,” “Geography Club,” “Reaching for the Moon,” “Test,” “The Kids are Alright,” “Breaking the Girls,” and “Valentine Road.” In addition, the Queer Resource Center also hosted a Sunday brunch, and a candle light vigil, in honor of Transgender Day of Remembrance.
Transgender Day of Remembrance annually occurs on November 20th. It is a day to remember those who have been killed because of transphobia, the fear or hatred of transgender and gender non-conforming people, and it serves to raise awareness concerning the violence endured by the transgender community. The Transgender Day of Remembrance was founded in 1998 by Gwendolyn Ann Smith, a graphic designer, columnist, and activist, to commemorate the murder of Rita Hester in Allston, Massachusetts. Since its inception, The Transgender Day of Remembrance evolved from a web-based project started by Smith into an international day of commemoration.
Typically, a Transgender Day of Remembrance memorial consists of a reading of the names of those who lost their lives during the previous year and may additionally also include candlelight vigils, art shows, food drives, film screenings, marches, among others. This usually culminates in a Transgender Awareness Week, such as in the case of EROS’ Film Festival.
The first film that was screened, “The Last Match,” depicts the relationshp between two Cuban Youngsters, Reiner and Yosvani, and how the pressures of their famiies, girlfriends, and poveerty affected their lives in the streets of Havana, Cuba.
“Geography Club” directed by Gary Entin explored the life of a closeted highschool teenager who is looking for love. The teenagerer ends up pursuing a relationship with someone of his same gender, and must deal with the conflicts concerning coming out, as well as the pressures of being a ‘misfit.’
Reaching for Moon,” a 2013 film is adapted from the novel, ‘Rare and Commonplace Flowers” and it traces the story of the love affair between the poet Elizabeth Bishop and the architect Lote de Macedo Soares. This takes place against the backdrop of the military changes in Brazil.
“Test,” directed by Chris Johnson depicts a young dancer, Frankie enjoying life and erotic freedom in San Francisco. Frankie faces a conflict when he starts to consider whether or not he should take an HIV test.
“The Kids Are All Right” directed by Lisa Cholodenko is a comedy that captures the dilemma faced by the son of a same-sex couple who seeks out the sperm donor who made his birth possible.
“Breaking the Girls” is a thriller that traces the turmulent reationship between two attractive college students who become moe than friends when they make a deal to kill off eachother’s nemesis.
The last film to be screened was “Valentine Road,” the delves into the issues concerning homophobia, sexism, racism and class struggle, through the story of a 15 year old.
Each of the films contributed towards raising important question pertaining to issues commonly faced by trangender communities.
A candle light vigil, and the naming of the victims who were murdered on account of their sexualiy, gave Trinity students, the oppurtunity to show their support and respect towards the community. A poem written by a member of EROS was also read to those that attended the event. This was an especially moving piece.
While an important aspect of our liberal arts education is to become more open-minded, putting our education to practise is extremely important. Supporting events such as this gives us the oppurtunity to do so.