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Tampa International Gay and Lesbian Film Festival continues through weekend

Benjamin Bratt stars as a macho Latino widower in the San Francisco Mission barrio who finds out that his only son is gay in La Mission, which closes the festival Sunday evening at Tampa Theatre.

Global Cinema Distribution

Benjamin Bratt stars as a macho Latino widower in the San Francisco Mission barrio who finds out that his only son is gay in La Mission, which closes the festival Sunday evening at Tampa Theatre.

By Steve Persall

Times Film Critic

The party rolls through the weekend at the Tampa International Gay and Lesbian Film Festival, capping its 21st edition at several Tampa Bay locations.

The 10-day showcase concludes Sunday, but not before a whole lot of shaking and cinema goes on. In addition to Saturday's dual parties in Ybor City, several films may have viewers dancing in the aisles.

Tonight

Events at BayWalk 20 in St. Petersburg conclude at 7:30 p.m. with Le Tigre on Tour, a concert documentary featuring the power punk trio from New York.

Meanwhile, Tampa Theatre continues tonight's musical theme at 7 p.m. with Rufus Wainwright: Prima Donna, a behind-the-scenes look at the genre-moshing musician reinventing an opera.

That film is followed at 9 by the French period piece Fashion Victim, billed as a cross between Dangerous Liaisons and Project Runway.

Friday

The lineup at Tampa Theatre includes the Sundance Film Festival favorite Four Faced Liar (7 p.m.), sort of like Bob&Carol&Ted&Alice with a rainbow tint. The nightcap is You Should Meet My Son, a comedy of family errors when a man comes out to his mother.

Saturday

It's an all-day affair at Tampa Theatre, starting with a free trio of shorts at 11:30 a.m. Other films scheduled are The Adonis Factor (1:30 p.m.), examining the allure of muscles among gay men; the lesbian awakening drama Elena Undone at 3:30; the ballroom dancing documentary Leading Ladies at 6; and Is It Just Me? at 8:30.

The latter film competes with the festival's annual Pure Sugar and Surge parties in Ybor City. Both shindigs begin at 9:30, with Pure Sugar for women at the Honey Pot and Surge for men at Czar Ybor. Tickets are $10, with a $20 VIP pass available for Pure Sugar.

Sunday

Festival patrons can sleep it off Sunday until Tampa Theatre unspools Out in the Silence at 1 p.m. That's followed at 3 by Mississippi Queen, a documentary by Paige Williams of returning to her hometown where her parents run an antigay ministry. Festival president John Thomas called Mississippi Queen a "really profound and quite stirring" examination of the need to communicate with people who oppose gay culture.

On a lighter note, The Topp Twins: Untouchable Girls (5 p.m.) is a rollicking documentary of Jools and Lynda Topp, twin sisters from New Zealand whose bawdy country music act is delightful.

Closing the festival at 7, La Mission stars Benjamin Bratt as an inner-city widower who disowns his gay son because of the macho tradition of Latino culture. Bratt delivers a wonderfully nuanced portrayal of a man coming to grips with his prejudice in a film deserving its spotlighted status in a festival still raising the bar after 21 years.

Steve Persall can be reached at persall@sptimes.com or (727) 893-8365.

>> If you go

Tampa International Gay and Lesbian Film Festival

It continues today through Sunday at Tampa Theatre, BayWalk 20 in St. Petersburg (tonight only) and two nightclubs Saturday in Ybor City. Movie tickets are $9.50 at the door, or multi-event passes ($125-$500) are available. Party admission is $10-$20. Visit tiglff.com for complete information.

Tampa International Gay and Lesbian Film Festival continues through weekend 10/13/10 [Last modified: Wednesday, October 13, 2010 11:19am]
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