Don’t miss the award-winning, critically-acclaimed Kanarie

Johan Niemand (Schalk Bezuidenhout) is a fashion-loving gay teen in small-town South Africa in 1985, a time of apartheid, religious conservatism and war – an era when not even his idol Boy George had dared to come out publicly as gay yet. 

When Johan is called up to serve his compulsory two-year military training, he escapes the border war by joining The South African Defence Force Church Choir and Concert Group, known as Die Kanaries (The Canaries), where he discovers his true self through hardship, camaraderie, first love and the liberating freedom of music.

A winner of over 15 different international awards, Kanarie earned rave reviews from critics. It currently has a 100% Fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes. The Los Angeles Times called it “A rich, poignant and finely observed musical drama.” Michael McNeely in theBUZZ said “Every once in a while comes a film that is filled with so much joy, human connection, and emotional turmoil, you know that as long as it sticks the landing, it is a masterpiece.”

Watch the trailer for Kanarie below. The film is available now on Dekkoo.

The lost queer classic Wild Tigers I Have Known has been restored and remastered for its 15th Anniversary

A 13-year-old boy learns to cope with his newfound sexuality and his unrequited love for the coolest kid at school in this lyrical coming-of-age indie from visionary director Cam Archer.

After being work-shopped at the 2005 Sundance Screenwriter’s Lab, Wild Tigers I Have Known had its world premiere at the 2006 Sundance Film Festival where it earned stellar reviews from critics. The film went on to be screened at New Directors/New Films Festival, London International Film Festival, Locarno International Film Festival and AFI Film Festival.

Despite great word-of-mouth, the film was heavily re-edited before being released theatrically by IFC Films in 2007. This shorter edition changed the sound as well as the order of the scenes, making them chronological. The edited version also leads to a completely different interpretation of the film’s events and themes – one not in line with the director’s original intent. In Europe, where the film was released on DVD only, the film was trimmed down to an even shorter 1 hour and 13 minutes.

In honor of the film’s 15th Anniversary, the indie boutique distribution label Altered Innocence has restored and remastered the film, presenting the full uncut version as Cam Archer envisioned it.

Watch the new trailer for Wild Tigers I Have Known below. The film is available now on Dekkoo.

Two high school friends get closer than they ever expected in the coming-of-age drama Blurred Lines

Janik and Samuel (Emil von Schönfels and Mekyas Mulugeta) are extremely close best friends celebrating the end of their senior year of high school. Both come from completely different worlds. Janik’s parents are seemingly perfect, while Samuel comes from a broken home. Naturally, Samuel is looking for stability while Janik just wants to rebel.

Sex and sexuality are never far from the surface for both, which leads the pair to one impulsive moment that could threaten their friendship forever. In an attempt to rekindle their relationship, the boys set off on a trip to Istanbul, but the blurred line that has been crossed proves hard to re-establish.

Based on a young adult novel by German writer and filmmaker Finn-Ole Heinrich, Blurred Lines (also known as Stambul Garden) is a thoroughly modern take on the bonds that develop between young men.

Watch the trailer for Blurred Lines below. The film is available now on Dekkoo.

Now Available: Tucked

A tender LGBTQ drama, Tucked follows an 80-year-old drag queen who forms and unusually deep relationship with a much younger up-and-coming performer. Though the two come from different backgrounds and have wildly different day-to-day experiences both struggle with their own issues of gender identity and mortality – and find comfort, support and much to learn in one another.

Set in Brighton, Tucked is a classic British ‘slice of life’ story that pays homage to celebrated works like Kinky Boots and The Dresser. A story about love, loss and friendship with a great charm and sense of humor, the film earned rave reviews from critics all around the world and spotlights two fantastic performances from lead actors Derren Nesbitt and Jordan Stephens.

Watch the trailer for Tucked below. The film is available now on Dekkoo.

Workplace paranoia gets out of control in the short horror comedy The Office is Mine

A short dark comedy about workplace horror, writer-director Michael Varrati’s The Office is Mine tells a 13-minute story about the competitive nature in all of us.

Despite the corporate monotony of his job, Zac (Ben Baur) feels like he’s got it all figured out. As “the only gay in the office,” his penchant for hot gossip and in-the-know recommendations have assured his place as the most fabulous employee in an otherwise dull landscape… or so he thinks.

With the arrival of a new hire, the ultra-chic Tristan (Chris Salvatore), Zac suddenly feels like the very thing that makes him stand out is in jeopardy. What’s more, Zac finds himself increasingly convinced that Tristan is intentionally trying to replace him.

Though Owen (Navaris Darson), his loving boyfriend, assures him that all is fine, Zac can’t help but slip further into a world of paranoia and self-doubt. As Zac’s world begins to unravel, it sets him on a collision course with Tristan… who may or may not be all that he seems.

As the two men propel toward a violent and unpredictable confrontation, only one thing is certain: The office isn’t big enough for the both of them!

Watch a special Q&A with director Michael Varrati and actors Ben Baur and Chris Salvatore from the Frameline Film Festival below. The Office is Mine is available now on Dekkoo.

Scotty and the Secret History of Hollywood examines scandalous show-biz history

Scotty and the Secret History of Hollywood is the deliciously scandalous story of Scotty Bowers, a handsome ex-Marine who landed in Hollywood after World War II and became confidante, aide-de-camp and lover to many of Hollywood’s greatest male and female stars.

In the 1940s and ‘50s, Scotty ran a gas station in the shadow of the studio lots – where he would connect his friends with actors and actresses who had to hide their true sexual identities for fear of police raids at gay bars, societal shunning and career suicide.

An unsung Hollywood legend, Bowers would cater to the sexual appetites of celebrities—straight and gay–for decades. While the studio PR machines were promoting their stars as wholesome and monogamous, Bowers was fulfilling the true desires of many of them.

This cinéma-vérité documentary by director Matt Tyrnauer (Valentino: The Last Emperor) tells his story, as well as presents eye-opening takes on icons from the Hollywood Golden Age including Cary Grant, Katharine Hepburn, Spencer Tracy, Lana Turner, Ava Gardner and many more.

Watch the trailer for Scotty and the Secret History of Hollywood below. The film is available now on Dekkoo.

12 LGBTQ shorts come together in the astounding animation collection Colour Me Queer

Since its origins, animation has thrived as one of cinema’s most beloved formats to tell stories – and this exciting new collection from MIYU distribution is no different.

Through the eyes of award-winning directors, Colour Me Queer explores issues of sexuality, love, and acceptance in a number of thrilling, imaginative styles.

Below we have a short synopsis for each of the 12 films featured in this astounding new collection. Colour Me Queer is available now on Dekkoo.

Tom has a Plant
Tom is living in a world where he doesn’t feel that he belongs, torn between staying or searching for a better place. On his last day, Tom decides to give all of his plants away to the ones he loves, without knowing that they already have a secret plan for him.

I Wait for the Night
A discussion between two boys on the shores of an abandoned lake will force one of them to face his inner demons.

Holy Nuns
Sucked into a whirlwind of improbable events, two eccentric nuns end up sliding down the slippery slope to sin.

Shudo
Two samurais face one another on a battlefield ravaged by war. Absorbed by their pride, they clash in a duel fuelled by deep emotions.

Modern Man
Frida is an old housewife. Her anger rises when she observes her spoiled and pampered husband being indoctrinated by a sexist rap clip.

Tentatrice
During the Roaring Twenties of Chicago, Myrtille is desperately attracted to the the Cabaret’s Singer. One night, the power of a peculiar perfume gives her a chance to step out of the shadows.

Bacchus
Alex, a young woman bored with modern life, is lured by Bacchus into a colorful and mysterious world to explore her deepest desires.

Chapped Lips
In a kitchen, a mother and a child struggle to establish dialogue.

She
In her room, a little girl is unhappy. Sitting on her bed on which is placed a doll, she looks at it with annoyance then catches and throws. This model little girl’s room is not in her image.

Animals
Find out what happens when people stuck on a train stop being anti-social and impolite and start getting real.

Ama
1950: On the coast of Japan, an American woman is visiting a village with her military husband and a group of friends. Breaking away from the group, she meets with Namiko, a young ama fisherwoman.

Make a Stand
Two young women are about to receive the greatest honour : be sacrified to their gods. But the sacrifice doesn’t go as expected.

Of Aska
Two women live happily together, one starts to transform, disturbing their usual dynamic. The one left unchanged has to decide how far their love goes.

Now Available: From Afar

Winner of the Golden Lion Award (the “Best Film” award, essentially) at Venice Film Festival, Alfredo Castro (The Club, The Prince) stars in this gripping and complex drama from Venezuela.

Wealthy, middle-aged Armando (Castro) lures young men to his home with money. He doesn’t want to touch them – or to be touched. He simply wants to watch from a strict distance. Armando’s first encounter with a young street thug named Elder (played by newcomer Luis Silva) is violent, but this doesn’t discourage the lonely man’s fascination with the tough handsome teenager.

Financial interest keeps Elder visiting Armando regularly. Despite their taboo arrangement, an unexpected intimacy begins to emerge between the two mismatched men. However, Armando’s haunted past looms large, and Elder soon ends up committing the ultimate act of affection on Armando’s behalf.

From Afar is available now on Dekkoo. Watch the trailer below.

Short Film Spotlight: I Am Norman

The new 18-minute short film I Am Norman opens with a warning. “You may find the following scenes upsetting, but that doesn’t always mean you should turn away.” The film then follows a man, a conversion therapy survivor living in his car, who takes a filmmaker into the woods to share a dark and disturbing secret.

From director/star Arron Blake and co-director Darius Shu, I Am Norman was filmed over three days during lockdown. The filmmakers challenged themselves to create a visually beautiful short with provocative storytelling using only a two-man crew.

Featuring an exceptional lead performance from Blake, the film has earned rave reviews from critics. Voice Magazine called the film “silently masterful,” Film Threat called it a “refined piece of work,” and Culture Fix called it, rightfully, “unsettling.”

Watch the trailer for I Am Norman below. The film is available now on Dekkoo.

The arrival of a secret gay lover threatens to derail an already tense wedding in the new drama The Marriage

With their wedding only two weeks away, Anita and Bekim (Adriana Matoshi and Alban Ukaj) are adding the final touches to their big day. Despite some major issues involving their respective families, the couple is managing to get through all of their many preparations.

However, when Bekim’s secret gay ex-lover, Nol (Genc Salihu), returns from abroad unexpectedly, the situation becomes complicated, especially when Bekim realizes that Nol is still in love with him.

Inevitably, the wedding banquet becomes loaded with tension when this unusual love triangle starts to unravel.

A touching and compassionate drama about the impossibility of a gay love affair in Kosovo’s patriarchal society, The Marriage is a well-acted and absorbing film debut from director Blerta Zeqiri. The film was the recipient of the FIPRESCI and Special Jury prizes in Tallinn and was the official Kosovar submission to the Academy Awards.

Watch the trailer for The Marriage below. The film is available now on Dekkoo.