Every month at the Paradise Theatre, curator and host Peter Knegt is offering queers (and anyone who loves them) a classic queer film, special guests and performers, and some good old fashioned drinks and conversation in the Paradise’s stunning lobby bar. Each film is paired with a different local queer artist, who will design an original poster for the screening.
This April, we have a very special edition planned: it’s our one year anniversary! We are celebrating it by finally screening a film by one of (if not the) greatest queer filmmakers of all-time: Pedro Almodóvar. And while we realize that a year is way too long a wait for Pedro to be part of any queer film series, we hope to make up for it by making “Almodóvar April” an annual tradition, which we could literally do for the next 20 years because that’s how many extraordinary films he’s made (basically every single one of them except for Kika and I’m So Excited!).
Our introduction to Almodóvar at Queer Cinema Club goes back to the first decade of his feature film work with 1987’s outrageously funny tale of lust, passion and jealousy, Law of Desire. It’s the first film that came out of El Deseo, the production company Almodóvar formed with his brother Agustín that has produced every one of his films since. It’s also arguably the first film he made that was truly liberated in its queerness, and the first to center on queer characters.
"It's the key film in my life and career,” he writes in Almodóvar on Almodóvar. “It deals with my vision of desire, something that's both very hard and very human. By this I mean the absolute necessity of being desired and the fact that in the interplay of desires it's rare that two desires meet and correspond.
Following a complicated love triangle between a gay filmmaker (Euesbio Poncela), his trans sister (Carmen Maura) and a repressed, murderously obsessive stalker (Antonio Banderas), Law of Desire was a huge success, becoming the most commercially successful and most internationally distributed Spanish film of its year. In many ways, it set the stage for Almodóvar’s rise as one of the most renowned queer filmmakers of all time. We’re also so excited for it to set the stage for the second year of Queer Cinema Club, and for local drag performer Lucy Mui to take our stage before the film to perform an Almodóvar-inspired number. We’re gonna have a time!
This month’s absolute fire of a poster was designed by Paul Twa. As always, it will be available for purchase at the screening. See ya soon, queers!