Smile Politely

It’s time to celebrate Pride Month!

Well, Barack Obama said it, so who are we to argue: June is LGBT Pride Month. We started the month off right, but June’s still far from over. So let’s relax this weekend with some “amazing films” in the lovely Art Theater with our fabulous selves.

The UP Center’s Kevin Johnson recently spoke with Smile Politely about the Film Festival, where he said that this year they’ll be showing “five amazing films, three of which were donated by the producers.” This year’s film fest also had financial assistance from sponsors, such as The Cutting Ed and Orange and Blue Distributing Co., Inc.

Until recently, we had to travel to Chicago’s Reeling Film Festival if we wanted to immerse ourselves in the best that queer films have to offer. But as of last year, we now have actual choices. Bloomington/Normal will host its second LGBT Film Festival in October, and Kevin assures us that C-U’s LGBTQA Film Festival is “definitely here to stay.” Great news!

Brief descriptions and official trailers of all the films showing at the festival are below. Previews of two of the films will be published later this week.

The festival starts at 1:00 p.m. on Saturday, June 11th. Tickets are $7.00 per movie; $22.00 for a pass. Details about the festival are at the end of this article.

**If you cannot (or don’t want to) attend the festival, but would like to help out a youth who cannot afford a ticket, the UP Center will take donations and provide passes to age-appropriate films for those youth who wouldn’t otherwise be able to attend.**


Poster of You Should Meet My Son
You Should Meet My Son

Comedy. When a match-making, conservative mother discovers that her son is gay, she attempts to find him Mr. Right.


Poster of Two Spirits
Two Spirits

Documentary. Two Spirits tells the story of the hate crime committed against Fred Martinez, who was nádleehí: a two spirited young man in the Native American community.


Poster of Camp Out
Camp Out

Documentary. Camp Out highlights an open and affirming summer camp for religious gay and lesbian teens. This is a fantastic film that many of our youth, as well as adults, will enjoy. I’ll be publishing a preview of Camp Out on Friday.


Poster of The Kids Are All Right
The Kids Are All Right

Drama. The Oscar-nominated film of a lesbian couple and the complications that occur when their children decide to locate – and cultivate a relationship with – their birth father. This film will be previewed by Mark Laughlin on Thursday.


Poster of The Big Gay Musical
The Big Gay Musical

Musical. In his radio interview, Kevin told Smile Politely that the festival is “ending on a really campy note,” and he wasn’t kidding. From the trailer, I can’t really tell what this film is actually about, but it looks to be fun and perhaps a little more serious than its title implies. My favorite lines from the trailer:

Man: He’s homosexual.
Well, at least that’s a disease we can cure him of.


UP Center 2nd Annual LGBTQA Film Festival
Time: Saturday, June 11, 1:00–11:30 p.m.
Location: The Art Theater

Film Schedule:

1:00: You Should Meet My Son
3:00: Two Spirits (talk back)
5:30: Camp Out
7:30: The Kids Are All Right
9:45: The Big Gay Musical


  • $7.00/Movie at the door
  • $22.00 for a Backstage Pass ($40.00 for two Backstage Passes)
  • Two Spirits is free to the public.

Backstage Passes can be purchased in advance. Passes purchased online will be held at Will Call and distributed at The Art on Saturday, June 11.

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