Program 26: After Louie
Directed by Vincent Gagliostro
We’ve entered an era that many LGBTQ folks may not have expected to arrive as quickly as it did. We’re much closer to having true equality than ever before. This is the exact goal that the activists who came before us strove for, bled for, died for.
New York City artist Sam Cooper (out bisexual actor Alan Cumming, The Good Wife; Web Therapy) is one of those activists. He lived through the AIDS crisis in the ’80s. He marched. He protested. He watched dozens upon dozens of his friends and loved ones die from the disease, including his best friend Louie, and he attended so many funerals, it takes an entire wall in his studio to list each of them by name. Hopelessly stuck in the past, Sam is angry. He resents the young gay men of today, and feels they don’t appreciate what he did, what other activists like him went through. Even as he sleeps with an endless line of much younger men, he holds onto his bitterness and wraps it around him like a security blanket.
Braeden (Zachary Booth, Keep the Lights On) is one of those young men. One who seems to stick. He’s in his twenties, has an open relationship with his boyfriend, and is drawn to Sam… almost as much as Sam is to him. Their sexual encounters become more frequent, but any time they start to get close – to get real – Sam falls back into his anger at Braeden’s generation for seemingly not being thankful enough. After all, it’s because of people like Sam that Braeden and his boyfriend can hold hands on the street, right? Shouldn’t that be acknowledged in some way?
Luckily, Sam has a tight group of friends (including the familiar faces of Wilson Cruz and Patrick Breen) that love him and therefore put up with his constant anger and abrasive resentment, even as they try to enlighten him. Ultimately, though, for Sam and for many of us, it may be actually listening to a twenty-something that gets the forty-something to look in the mirror and finally understand his own world. And more importantly, how that world views him.
— Georgia Beers
AWARDS & ACCOLADES
- CLOSING NIGHT – Frameline San Francisco LGBTQ Int’l Film Festival
- OPENING NIGHT – Queer Screen Mardi Gras Film Festival (Sydney)
- CENTERPIECE FILM – Inside Out Toronto LGBT Film Festival
- SPOTLIGHT FILM – Provincetown International Film Festival
- OFFICIAL SELECTION – BFI Flare London LGBT Film Festival
- OFFICIAL SELECTION – Outfest LA LGBT Film Festival
- OFFICIAL SELECTION – Austin Gay & Lesbian Int’l Film Festival
- OFFICIAL SELECTION – Reeling Chicago LGBTQ+ Int’l Film Festival
The Rochester Jewish Film Festival
Alfonso Guevara / Special Guests / Mexico / 2017 / 16 minsRochester photographer and professor Joe Ziolkowski reflects on his life as an artist and his artworks on the eve of a retrospective solo exhibition.
Precedes: Program 26: After Louie