Now Available: My Big Gay Jewish Conversion

Is Israel really the best place in the world to be gay? And is Judaism the one mainstream religion that accepts homosexuality? Meet Simon, a gay Catholic man from the West of Ireland on a quest to find out.

Simon has never truly felt accepted by his own church, a problem that Matthew, his Jewish boyfriend from North London, has never had to face. Simon begins to wonder if the grass may be greener, and considers converting. He starts with a trip to the local Rabbi where they chat, among other things, about getting ‘snipped’, but Simon is itching to get to Judaism’s homeland: Israel. He hops on a plane and first hits the streets of Tel Aviv, ‘the gayest city on Earth’, where he meets gay people from all walks of life, including gay soldiers in the IDF. Then he heads to Jerusalem, where the story here is very different. Extreme views towards homosexuality are rife and Simon encounters this at an uncomfortably close proximity. Then, it’s crunch time. Faced with the facts, will Simon jump ship and become Jewish?

A deeply personal, cross-cultural documentary from filmmaker (and subject) Simon Atkins, My Big Gay Jewish Conversion looks at love, relationship and religion with an intelligent and introspective eye.

Watch the trailer for My Big Gay Jewish Conversion below. The film is now available on Dekkoo.

New This Week – 4/17/20

‘Twilight’ star Booboo Stewart stars as a Chinese-American teen with Asperger’s syndrome who begins investigating the secret life of his late older brother. Joan Chen, BD Wong and “Glee” star Harry Shum Jr. co-star in this moving family drama from writer-director Quentin Lee. ‘White Frog’ is available to stream now on Dekkoo.

Fourteen-year-old J goes by the pronoun ‘They’ and is exploring their gender identity while taking hormone blockers to postpone puberty. After two years of medication and therapy, J has to make a decision about whether or not to transition. Stream ‘They’ now on Dekkoo!

International Chrysis was a New York “show girl” and drag queen. Surreal herself, Chrysis was one of Salvador Dali’s inner circle, a woman from the waist up, a man from the waist down. The movie penetrates Chrysis’ hidden world of transsexual and drag queens, hormones, drugs and prostitution, a dark world she lights up with humor, wit and glamour. ‘Split: Portrait of a Drag Queen’ is available now on Dekkoo.

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Coming Next Week: Two men fall in love in a run-down town of Siberia, Russia.

New This Week – 3/27/20

When a 30-something Argentine poet on vacation in Barcelona spots a Spaniard from Berlin the attraction is subtle but persistent. After a missed connection on the beach, a third chance encounter escalates to a seemingly random hookup. But are these two merely beautiful strangers in a foreign city or are they part of each other’s histories – and maybe even their destinies? ‘End of the Century’ is now available on Dekkoo!

In Kuntergrau, coming out is part of the past while sex and love is mundane. A group of five gay friends between 17 and 24 deal with everyday problems and experience the meaning of love, sex, and friendship. Season 2 of Kuntergrau is now available to stream on Dekkoo!

Winn Morton – a visionary, 90-year-old costume designer who honed his craft on Broadway and with Ringling Brothers Circus – brings over-the-top fantasy and sparkle to a traditional debutante pageant in East Texas. Watch ‘The Queen’s New Clothes’ on Dekkoo!

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Coming next week: “…a thematically ambitious but narratively very intimate and compassionate story of human relationships.” – The Hollywood Reporter

Short Film Spotlight: Battle Cry

Kyle Reaume is an award winning Toronto-based director, writer, actor and editor. Graduating from Toronto Film School in 2015, his student short film The Lazarus Files took home Best Picture, Best Producer, Best Editor and Best Production Design awards. His collective shorts have screened in over sixty film festivals worldwide.

In 2016, Kyle won the inaugural Inside Out BravoFact Pitch Competition, receiving a $50,000 grant to produce his short, What About Shelley, which screened at festivals worldwide, including Canada, the US, Germany, China, and Iceland. His short film Vertical Lines won Best Men’s Short at 2018 Wicked Queer Boston, and Best Screenplay at the 2019 Future of Film Showcase. Currently, he is developing his first feature film.

Kyle’s latest short film, Battle Cry, is now available on Dekkoo. At the oldest-running queer theatre in the world, Toronto’s most cerebral drag queen and “tragicomedienne” Pearle Harbour prepares to take the stage for her new show “Battle Cry: Songs Of Warfare & Gaiety”.

Watch a short clip from Battle Cry below. The film is now available on Dekkoo.

 

New This Week – 3/6/20

This dark comedy from writer-director-star Mark Blane concerns a self-involved gay man who becomes a nanny for a well-to-do couple…a job for which he’s completely unqualified. As he begins to bond with his precocious new charge, he also starts having delusions involving a BDSM superhero named Leather-Man, brought on by a psychedelic cupcake. ‘Cubby’ is available to stream exclusively on Dekkoo!

Jasper, a 20 something playboy with little empathy, has a date in a rather obscure motel Petit Ami with Vincent, a mysterious older man. For Jasper just another day on the job, until he discovers Vincent’s secret. Watch ‘Petit Ami’ now on Dekkoo!

At the oldest-running queer theatre in the world, Toronto’s most cerebral drag queen and “tragicomedienne” Pearle Harbour prepares to take the stage for her new show “Battle Cry: Songs Of Warfare & Gaiety”. ‘Battle Cry’ is now available to stream on Dekkoo!

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Coming next week: The Dekkoo-original series ‘Stranger Hearts’!

New This Week – 1/24/20

Two best friends from Berlin win a trip to Greece. On their excursion, they get lost on an island. They spend the night together in a cave and dream a mystical dream. On the next day, nothing between the two will be like it was before. ‘Orpheus Song’ is a brand new gay film streaming exclusively on Dekkoo!

In this stunningly original short film a restless young man wants to leave love and the Earth behind. ‘Mankind’ is streaming now on Dekkoo!

In this merry movie of matrimony, happily engaged Antonio brings his fiancé Paulo to the exquisite old Italian village of his birth to meet his headstrong parents and reveal his sexuality, setting out on a quest to make a city founded on religious tradition understand that love is love. Stream ‘My Big Gay Italian Wedding’ now on Dekkoo!

In this three-part documentary series LGBT culture and issues are explored in modern day Japan. Watch ‘Queer Asia: Japan’ now on Dekkoo.

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Coming next week: A romantic interaction between two young footballers profoundly affects one of them throughout the rest of his life and career.

I Always Said Yes: The Many Lives of Wakefield Poole celebrates a queer filmmaking pioneer

I Always Said Yes: The Many Lives of Wakefield Poole tells the story of a sometimes-overlooked gay liberation and independent filmmaking pioneer.

In late 1971, Wakefield Poole, a respected Broadway dancer and choreographer, had the audacity to put his real name above the title of his first film, a low- budget, hardcore gay erotic feature called Boys in the Sand. And to make sure everyone knew about it, Poole advertised the film in the New York Times, creating a sensation.

In an era when anyone making, promoting, or appearing in what the US government considered “pornography” could be liable for prosecution and jail time, Poole was a remarkably open and honest gay filmmaker. He became internationally famous and his movies screened for years as examples that films could be artistic as well as sexually explicit.

Director/Producer Jim Tushinski continues the exploration of art and sexuality he began in That Man: Peter Berlin, but this time around, the main character is not a cool, untouchable icon. Poole, now in his 80s, tells his own story, that of an outspoken and articulate artist in a turbulent, passionate time. He didn’t think of himself as a pornographer. He was a filmmaker who used his dance and theater background to create beautiful, erotic art films that “challenged the mind.”

To many, though, Poole just made dirty movies. But Poole was so much more than a filmmaker and his amazing life story leads him through twists and turns, triumphs and tragedies, and a number of remarkable reinventions.

Watch the trailer for I Always Said Yes: The Many Lives of Wakefield Poole below. The film is now available on Dekkoo.