For its ninth edition, the Philadelphia Latino Film Festival (PHLAFF) is going virtual. Joining the wave of recent fests who have needed to shift their programming to accommodate the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, PHLAFF is gearing up for a wholly online edition, putting intersectionality at the center of its offerings. With free online screenings of many of its films, the June fest promises to give audiences a worthwhile opportunity to see some exciting work coming from all over Latin America and the U.S. “Connecting with our audiences is more important than ever,” said Marangeli Mejia-Rabell, director of PHLAFF. “That is why we are producing a festival experience to provide communities with powerful alternatives.”
The Undocumented Filmmaker Colective Shorts Program, for example, will feature world premieres of Via Crucis, about Central American migrants on their journey through Mexico to pay homage to the Virgen de Guadalupe, and Before and After Detention, about the journey of three transgender migrant women as they seek a better life in the US as they face transphobia, racism, and discrimination. Similarly, a shorts selection focused on music not only includes films on the immersive worlds of Bomba and Plena and music videos from Calma Carmona, but also the LOLA Award Honorable Mention Mariachis con pantalones, which follows the Mariachi Flor de Toloache as they perform in New York City, California and India.
Elsewhere, and given that PHLAFF takes place during Pride, audiences can check out a number of LGBTQ films in the lineup. That includes Rainha de Lapa (Queen of Lapa), a documentary about Luana Muniz – arguably one of Brazil’s most recognizable transgender personalities, Retablo, about a young Peruvian boy learning firsthand about homophobia in his small mountainside community, and Todos cambiamos (Everybody Changes), about a trans woman struggling to live a double life.
Take a look at PHLAFF’s 2020 trailer and make sure to take advantage of its stellar lineup.
PHLAFF 2020 runs June 4-7, 2020.