International Queer & Migrant Film Festival 2019 – our highlights

From December 4th till 8th International Queer & Migrant Film Festival (IQMF) celebrates its’ fifth anniversary. And this edition is bigger and even more divers than usual. IQMF 2019 offers program full of films, dance performances, debates, photography, literature and art. We give you our highlights of the program.

The films

The festival’s core is of course a rich selection of full feature and short films. You can choose from over 50 films focusing on LGBTQI+ an migrant stories from more than 20 countries.

The festival opens with the film Lemebel, 4th December, 7.30PM. It is a documentary about the Chilean writer, artist and activist Pedro Lemebel (1952-2015) who opposed the reign of dictator Augusto Pinochet. This documentary tells the story of an activist who fought the dictatorship and for LGBTQI+ rights with his body, fire and blood.

Midnight Frontier, a documentary about Georgian LGBT activists. The world-famous night club Bassiani is their refuge, a beacon of
freedom. It is their fortress of resistance in a homophobic environment. Midnight Fronter is part of the shorts program Focus on the Caucasus. You can see this shorts program twice Thursday December 5th at 9.45PM and Sunday December 8th at 4PM.

Ballroom / Vogue special, three films about the ball culture in the Netherlands and French Guyana. These films are Father Figure, Sex Sirens and Fabulous. This shorts program will also be shown twice: Friday December 6th at 10.10PM and Sunday December 8th at 5.30PM.

The Sworn Virgin & The Girl is a feature documentary about the dying Albanian tradition where women can go through life as men as long as they remain a virgin and never marry. This movie is shown together with Sunny Boy, a film about an Indian man from Malaysia who fled a hidden gay life in Kuala Lumpur to find freedom and himself in London. Both films are shown together twice: Friday December 6th at 6.30PM and Saturday December 7th at 4PM.


To celebrate the anniversary, IQMF organizes a retrospective of the artwork which Daniel Arzola. Daniel is a Venezuelan artist and human rights activist. He has created all the visual art for IQMF in recent years. The exhibition is in Lab 111, the central hub of this years’ festival. Free entrance during festival opening hours.

Naked Berlin is an exhibition by the photographer Abdulsalam Ajaj and performance artist Mischa Badasyan. The focus of this exhibition/performance are naked bodies and how you can reclaim public space. You can visit the exhbition at 4Bid Gallery (OT301, Overtoom 301) from December 3rd till December 8th. Opening hours: 7PM – 9.30PM.

Talk about Queer and Migrant issues and activism

International Queer & Migrant Film Festival has also a rich program of so-called Talks. This are public and interactive interviews with several speakers around queer and migrant issues. Entrance fee for all talks is €5,-, but you can get in free if you bought already a ticket for any of the movie screenings.

The main talk is called Festivals for Freedom (Saturday December 7th at 4.30PM). During this talk on International guests discuss how they organize and promote LGBTQ+ activities in countries with legislation that doesn’t ensure the protection of Human Rights. Guest are  Leyli Gafarova (InVisible Film Festival Baku), Popo Fan (Beijing Queer Film Festival), Masha Godovannaya (filmmaker), Shaky Hassan (filmmaker).

Other talks focus on Being Queer in the Caribbean Context (Friday December 6th, 7PM), Queer Activism, the Maroccan Perspective (Saturday December 7th, 8PM) and Safe Art Spaces: The Balkan Approach (Sunday 8th December, 3PM).

Practical information

This year the festival takes place in LAB111 and Cinema of the Dam’d with parties in Vrankrijk and OT301. On this page on the IQMF website you can find the address of the locations and maps.

Tickets for the events you can buy on this page. Prices vary per event en location. A great deal is the passe-partout for €49,50. This will be interesting for you if you plan to visit more than five screenings.

In this article you got a short impression of the rich program of IQMF 2019. If you want to read about all the events and films, visit the program page of IQMF.

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