Beeston Film Festival falls between the LGBTQ+ History Month in February and Pride Month in June. With its ‘Pride’ category, our film festival takes part in the important work of uplifting queer voices and giving them a platform to present stories of love, struggle, or to simply give queer filmmakers a voice.

Ever since we were all children, the stories of love were always heteronormative - the princess is saved by the prince, the female heroine lands the handsome male lead and so on. As our society progresses and more freedom is accustomed to sexual expression, the film industry is crucial in normalizing same sex love. We have seen some positive steps, such as Barry Jenkins’ Moonlight winning Best Picture at the Oscars in 2017, Céline Sciamma’s Portrait of a Lady on Fire becoming an instant classic recently or Cate Blanchett delivering an acclaimed performance in Carol.

At Beeston Film Festival, we have a selection of six films of different genres, ranging from documentary to horror that show the audience different perspectives. From subtlety to poignant commentary, everyone can find their pick and experience a look at a queer story in under thirty minues.

Manchester Pride Parade: The Movie is also in our ‘Best in Festival’ selection. Replacing the usual Pride Parade due to the pandemic, the first half of the film offers a masterfully crafted look at the legal and cultural history of LGBTQ+ from the past century in Britain. Showing the arduous fight towards equality helps everyone understand, especially those outside of the queer community, just how hard people had to fight to simply not be arrested for loving a person of the same sex. The second half of the film features people from right now, representing the community and celebrating it at least in this symbolic way.

My Friend Artemis is a Norwegian documentary about the transition of a 22-year-old trans woman named Artemis. Directed by her friend Mads Sterri Nilsen, who also appears in the film, it tells the story of how challenging it is for Artemis to get to the healthcare she needs to be able to be fully herself. Despite the bureaucratic struggle, the documentary is uplifting and tells a heartwarming story of how Artemis works towards being her true self.

With more emotional stories like Dear Aunt Noa or a campy horror flick like Mourning Rites or a lockdown story with exceptional use of music like SILENCE, or a tragic look at how queerness is perceived in Iran with Mermaid, Beeston Film Festival’s ‘Pride’ category provides a multifaceted selection of short films that will capture your mind and you’ll leave the screening unable to forget about these stories.

Written by Sara Jakubcova