In the innovative iniciative Pequeños Woofs, SCRUFF invited the CUÓRUM Morelia Festival to make a selection of eight Spanish-speaking LGBTQ * short films, to be shown on its application for 30 days from May 15, 2021. These shorts show us the fascination -y concern- of queer filmmakers to reinvent representation and capture the multiplicity of community experiences in their fleeting passions, unrequited love and their need for freedom.
On the one hand, a curious look at gay intimacy recognizable in Latin America through cruising: from the Mexico City Metro (Line 9), to the ruins of a military fortress in Havana, Cuba (Bateria) or in the middle of the nature of some Argentine place (La Disyuntiva). On the other hand, short films that take us into the melodrama that characterizes us and that makes us feel the sexual tension that arises when we are not reciprocated by our crush (En Color, Primavera).
Stories that show cis and trans women in constant movement, through those who work with their bodies (Albina), uncover appearances (Emilia) and fight for their identity (Thara). A selection of short films that reveals an intensely diverse and constantly changing community.
THARA, portrait of a young trans woman, sex worker, in a poverty-stricken neighborhood in Honduras: it is the perfect setting for hate crimes. Accompanied by the love of her mother, who is a vital but provisional shield, Thara is an emblem of resilience and solidarity. The film represents a novel proposal, mixing documentary with animated sequences whose fluid and colorful aesthetic contrasts with the rigidity of the narrow and cruel mentality. Against the background of hatred, daily beatings, people doubly violated as migrants, as sexual dissidents, Thara walks the dilapidated streets and fills them with light and glamor.
In ALBINA another invisibility is glimpsed — what is seen is not asked, and what is asked is not seen either. A scene taken from the imaginary of film noir: the purple hours of the night, the underworld of Mexico City, illuminated by the neon that announces passing hotels. The act of seeking sexual services defies all expectations. This short is an invitation to experience uncertainty and to rediscover our pulse of desire.
In another space of deceptive appearances, of homes well that subsist on hidden secrets, EMILIA, an uncomfortable guest, resurrects ghosts from the past: a truncated desire between two women, a discarded future. The guest wanders in the memory and in the forbidden spaces of the house, discovers that secrets hide others, that prejudice lives in everyone, and that there is always a taboo that we dare not name.
The swift rhythm of succumbing to a passion is printed on LINE 9. Tavo Ruiz explores the strange geography of the underground world of the subway. In the bland space of public transport, redrawn in furtive and eager glances, flirting gestures are decoded, bodies, fantasies, concerns are undone. In this train, the passengers are diverted. Disguising the reality of fantasy opens two paths: in one, the one that plays romance to satisfy the urge, and in the other, the one that feels the future slide into the inevitable orgasm. Restored to their respective routines, one boy thinks about the next stop, the other on a new route, beyond the universe of Line 9.
Naturally erotic. A body in the middle of nature lifts the cell phone to the sky. Another body walks agitated along a path that opens through the vegetation. Who is looking for what? Who is looking for whom? LA DISJUNTIVA proposes a game of displacements in interposed images of two cis men surrounded by bushes and whose silhouettes are confused in this visual and sound dynamic. As they
walk down the road, emotions bloom. Then, the dilemma: is this okay? and the bodies dissolve into each other in a single frame, like a response that overflows with passion. And in the very body of the image the memory of intense, ephemeral, and liberating sex is imprinted.
In PRIMAVERA (SPRING) a camping adventure in a forest far enough from home, but not far enough from the yoke of society, a duet of friends becomes out of phase in the hope of “something more”. The tent is a preamble to a space for confessions. Some lips turn away, and they detonate intimate and cruel violence. The forest turns cold and bleak now inhabited by the sudden distance between best friends. Then an unexpected gesture of empathy, the exchange of emotions throws the moment of freedom.
Another platonic love, this time EN COLOR; sentimental education with wave and choreography. In just 15 minutes, the short invokes the energies of the Hollywood musical — that majestic genre that re-calibrates the sobriety of the world with atmospheres of possibility and heart-racing rhythms. The plot unfolds into two registers – that of the inexpressive reality of apathetic adolescence, drowned in
whispers, prejudices, affective clumsiness and aspirations for normality; and its b-side: a Busby Berkeley-style explosion of hearts that contaminates the house party, the basketball court, the gym restrooms, and the studio. Suddenly, “helping with homework,” promises a voluptuous encounter, malacopa night invites you to unravel and talk from heart to heart. The disguises of stagnant heterosexuality fade to bring out the camp that we all carry inside.
If the presence of bodies abounds in most of the shorts, in BATERÍA it emerges as a stealth presence, fogging up the space — walls that bear witness to brief, clandestine encounters, but commemorating the culture of resistance and the fullness of sexuality. In an old and decayed military fortress on the outskirts of Havana, passions leave traces. Cruising, love between men, the hidden avant-garde that
makes the ruins a space of eternal freedom.
Dir. Pablo Ortíz
Mexico, 6 min.
A car moves slowly and looks for a nocturnal creature in a tight dress ready to fill the other's body with
pleasure. Who drives this car? Why does he stop in front of her?
Interview with Pablo Ortíz: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mvoefgvXolQ
Dir. Damien Sainz
Cuba, 15 min.
The ruins of an old military fortress in Havana have become a clandestine place for gay cruising, as well
as a culture of resistance and socialization.
Interview with Damián Sainz: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_-TULtA8RCM
Dir. James Lucas
Mexico, 15 min.
This is a musical short that reveals the complicity of a love, the weight of secrets, and also the different
stages of falling in love, as well as the difficult learning of letting go.
Interview with James Lucas: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bIIlZI4Qr-M&t=119s
Dir. Antonio Zucherino
Argentina, 13 min.
Two men walk agitated through bushes and large trees. One follows the other: both inspect the place.
After a while, they both stop in the middle of the foliage.
Interview with Antonio Zucherino: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZRAOlY-XM_I&t=52s
Dir. Diego Lomelín
Mexico, 14 min.
Emilia arrives at her friend Ana's birthday and while she waits, she lives uncomfortably with the guests.
Her curiosity will make her discover a secret that this "perfect" family keeps.
Interview with Diego Lomelín: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NG64OH3eXfA
Dir. Tavo Ruíz
Mexico, 16 min
On line 9 of the metro, the paths of Andrés and Miguel are crossing. It seems the beginning of a new
romance, but Andrés does not know which direction to take.
Interview with Tavo Ruíz: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ES3WoKdUvpo
Dir. Rafael Ruíz Espejo
Mexico, 14 min.
Fernando is attracted to his best friend. Together they escape from school to camp in the woods.
Interview with Rafael Ruíz Espejo: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Xx-Q0lOa0Q
Dir. Paco Ramírez
Mexico-Honduras, 14 min.
Thara is a trans woman and sex worker living in Honduras. Despite prejudice and violence, she risks
everything to be herself, even in the face of dangers that lurk in the night.
Interview with Paco Ramírez: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q395MQttko0