Dir: Diederik Ebbinge, The Netherlands, 2013, 87 mins, Dutch with English subtitles

Widower Fred lives alone since losing his wife and son. At 54, his life is one of stultifying routine, attending church and eating his green beans, meat and potatoes at 6 o’clock on the dot every day. One day he offers a room to mentally- impaired homeless man Theo, causing quite a stir in the neighbourhood. A dry, deadpan comedy, Matterhorn soars to one hell of an emotional climax that has had audiences cheering at screenings worldwide. Come see why. 

Ich Fühl Mich Disco Dir: Axel Ranisch, Germany, 2013, 95 mins, German with English subtitles

Chubby teenager Florian is very close to his mother. The two enjoy nothing more than dressing up and lip-syncing to disco songs. His diving coach father can’t understand this obsession at all, nor why his son isn’t interested in sports or girls. One day, tragedy strikes Florian’s mother, leaving father and son to cope in each other’s company. But when Florian meets his father’s young Romanian diving student, a tentative adolescent romance begins. At times heartbreaking, at others laugh-out-loud funny, this impressive tragi-comedy is one of the highlights of the festival. 

Dir: Scott R Thompson, USA, 2012, 125 mins

Dumped by her girlfriend, gay-marriage activist Mercedes consoles herself at a bar where she meets Molly, a quirky, eccentric soul who has never slept with a woman... until now. At first she is eager to shake Molly’s desperate attentions, but when she discovers that Molly’s father is an influential senator who strongly opposes gay marriage, she hatches a plan to crash the senator’s birthday party. Posing as Molly’s lesbian fiancée she gets herself invited to the mansion. A comedy of deception which encourages us to just be who we are. 

Dir: Gary Entin, USA, 2012, 83 mins

16-year old Russell is still dating girls while having a secret relationship with football quarterback Kevin, who will do anything to prevent his teammates from finding out. Min and Terese tell everyone that they’re just really good friends. And then there’s Ike who can’t figure out who he is or who he wants to be. Together they form the Geography Club, a Gay-Straight Alliance in disguise, thinking nobody else would ever want to join. This smart and funny film, based on Brent Hartinger’s novel, will resonate with teens and adults alike.

Dir: Michelle Ehlen, USA, 2013, 80 mins

Jill joins an “ex-lesbian” therapy group, but in order to prove to herself that she is straight she tracks down her butch ex-girlfriend Jamie. Strung along by guilt and desire, Jamie agrees to the plan of “dating” Jill so that Jill can close the lesbian chapter of her life. What could possibly go wrong? Director Michelle Ehlen, who stars as Jaimie, mixes camp humour with sharp observations on sexuality and identity.

Dir: Darren Stein, USA, 2013, 94 mins

Social warfare erupts in a suburban high school when the most popular girls compete to bag the big trend in fashion accessories, the Gay Best Friend. Tanner and Brent are gay but in the closet. Brent longs for the spotlight, believing that coming out will make him instantly popular, while Tanner just hopes to graduate without ever being noticed. When Tanner is accidentally outed instead of Brent, things go crazy pretty quickly. Frothy and colourful, GBF is chock full of one-liners and enough glittering teenage homosexiness to leave you feeling gaymazing for weeks.

GBF is our feature film for Opening Night Auckland, Opening Night Wellington, and Opening Night Christchurch.