Metro Weekly

October Surprise: Reel Affirmations 2016 closes with “King Cobra”

Reel Affirmations returns to its fall berth, with a just-announced closing film sure to generate buzz: King Cobra

King Cobra

King Cobra

Reel Affirmations, the city’s popular LGBT film festival, is finally back where it belongs — in October. As with last year’s August festival, the event covers three days over a weekend rather than ten days, making it a more manageable festival for patrons as well as Festival Director Kimberley Bush and the DC Center, which took it on after long time producer One-In-Ten shuttered its doors.

It kicks off Thursday, Oct. 13, with a special launch party screening of Retake, the tale of a man who hires a male prostitute to join him on a road trip, resulting in emotional catharsis for each. Tuc Watkins, who played one-half of the gay couple on Desperate Housewives, stars in the drama.

The festival, with its apparent focus on quality rather than quantity of past years, starts in earnest Friday, Oct. 14 and runs through Sunday, Oct. 16. The dozen programs include the award-winning LOEV, in which two men forge a deep bond over a road trip, the sexually provocative French entry Theo and Hugo, Carly Usdin’s lesbian drama Suicide Kale, and Strike a Pose, a documentary about Madonna’s male backup dancers who starred in the documentary Truth or Dare. Saturday afternoon sees several collections of shorts, including one specifically centered on transgender persons.

The biggest news by far, however, is the landing of the much buzzed-about King Cobra as Sunday’s festival closer. A biopic about porn-star Brent Corrigan, the drama boasts an impressive cast, including James Franco, Christian Slater, Molly Ringwald, Alicia Silverstone and Garrett Clayton as the famed porn star who helped make Cobra Video a (gay) household name. Get your tickets now, because this one’s going to be popular. —Randy Shulman

Reel Affirmations is Oct. 13 to 16, with screenings at GALA’s Tivoli Theatre (1333 14th St. NW) and the HRC Building (1640 Rhode Island Ave. NW). Festival Passes cost $30 to $325 and are available, along with a full schedule of films, at reelaffirmations.org.


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Randy Shulman is Metro Weekly's Publisher and Editor-in-Chief. He can be reached at rshulman@metroweekly.com.

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