Reelout 2022: What to Watch

By Emily Coppella

Over a thousand submissions were reviewed by the Reelout Arts Project Inc. programming committee to curate this year’s outstanding line-up of LGBTQ+ indie cinema – that’s seven times more submissions than 2019. Cozying up and celebrating LGBTQ+ films has never been easier. Kingston’s 23rd annual queer film and video festival has been re-branded as ReelOutario Virtual Queer Film Festival this year. The all-virtual festival takes place January 27 to February 7. It’s full of short and feature-length narratives and documentaries that focus on sexual orientation, gender, age, ability, health, race, culture, class, and religion around the world. Over the eight days of the festival, the films can be accessed through Reelout’s Eventive page.

We spoke with Matt Salton, the director of Reelout, who’s excited about the upcoming line-up.

“We’re all thrilled to offer Ontario audiences a chance to escape winter and the pandemic with 60-plus films from 18 different countries and diasporas.”

Wildhood by Bretten Hannam

The Three Things Consulting/Reelout Opening Gala Selection this year includes not one, but two, amazing Canadian films: Stupid for You directed by Jude Klassen, a music-infused rom-com shot in Toronto, and the emotionally charged, Two-Spirit, Mi’kmaq road trip drama Wildhood by Bretten Hannam.

Salton explains that the programming committee didn’t know which films or filmmakers were local while reviewing, so as not to sway their selections:

“So, it was an unexpected surprise to see an experimental short work called An Ode to Queer Friendship so enthusiastically embraced by our team as it was directed by Megan Ingram who is currently a master’s student at Queen’s University. What impressed us the most was Ingram’s choice to tell an original story about friendship in an exciting and unique way that also explores disability and neuro-divergent relationships.”

Another happy surprise included discovering that Caylin Turner, one of the lead actors from the first opening gala selection, Stupid for You, is from Wolfe Island.

Anyone viewing from within Ontario can purchase an all-access pass to view all 19 programs, or they can buy individual tickets for specific programs. Tickets are $15 per program, $69 for five films, and $139 for all 61 films.

Since 1999, Reelout has been promoting queer media arts and encouraging discussions about diversity in the Kingston community. This new year, grab some popcorn and enjoy a selection of unique films from near and far.

You can view the Reelout catalogue now.

Megan Ingram | An Ode to Queer Friendship