Features

Out gay cinematographer and filmmaker PJ Raval is coming to Philadelphia to present and discuss his 2018 documentary “Call Her Ganda.” The film recounts the 2014 murder of Filipino transwoman Jennifer Laude by Marine Lance Cpl. Joseph Scott Pemberton.

Raval examines the human-rights abuses and media frenzy that transpired, as well as the impact this case had. It ignited trans-community activism and a demand for justice in a system designed to protect Americans.

Set in 1979 Paris and in the gay-porn world, “Knife+Heart,” opening April 5 at the Landmark Ritz at the Bourse, is a cheeky queer thriller. Not only is director/co-writer Yann Gonzalez’s tongue planted firmly in cheek — his film features comic porno humor — but he also takes some real chances, most of which pay off.

The film opens with a sequence that cross-cuts between sex and death. Fouad (Khaled Alouach) is an adult-film star who meets an untimely end when a masked man ties him to a bed, strips him naked and murders him with a dildo that doubles as a knife.

 Philadelphia’s annual LGBTQ film festival is days away — and one of the highlights features a very Philly story.

In the short film “Going Forward,” screening 7 p.m. March 25 (opening night) at the Kimmel’s Perelman Theater, local filmmaker Tim Harris follows Pennsylvania State Rep. Malcolm Kenyatta on Election Day 2018 as he becomes the first openly gay person of color to be elected to state office.

Because I’ve spent a considerable amount of time in Canada, I can tell you there’s a lot of comedic talent in our neighbor to the north.

One of those comedians is Kyle Brownrigg, who is fearless and openly gay with a devastatingly funny and razor-sharp sense of deadpan delivery. And he just released his debut live comedy album “Unmedicated: The New Fragrance.”

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