Three Dollar Bill Cinema hosts its 24th annual Seattle Queer Film Festival at venues across town October 10–20. Formerly known as TWIST (and before that, the Seattle Lesbian & Gay Film Festival), the Seattle Queer Film Festival features more than 150 LGBTQ2+ films from 28 countries. According to the fest, 96 transgender filmmakers and creatives were involved with the making of these films, and 58 percent of the films are directed by women. Here are nine of our favorites. Find the full schedule at thestranger.com/SQFF.



SID & JUDY

USA, 2019, 97 min., Dir. Stephen Kijak

Judy Garland is the talk of the town this fall. At least two big films have come out on her: First, the new blockbuster biopic Judy, which zooms in on the final year of Garland's life. Second, Showtime's documentary Sid & Judy, which centers on Garland's relationship with her third husband (of five), Sid Luft. The documentary is a cavalcade of archival footage and features zero talking heads—which I love. (Thurs Oct 10, 6:30 pm, SIFF Cinema Egyptian.) CHASE BURNS



ADAM

USA, 2019, 95 min., Dir. Rhys Ernst

A film about mistaken identity, deception, and queer politics, Adam was swallowed by controversy before it was out of production. Many have prematurely labeled the film "dangerous" and "transphobic" because it centers on a horrible cisgender teenage boy who pretends to be a trans man to attract a young cisgender woman. It was created by trans filmmaker Rhys Ernst (previously a producer on Transparent) and includes a large trans cast and crew, but people continue to push to cancel the film before it even premieres. I find Adam full of contradictions: sweet and maddening, gentle but reckless, simple yet confusing. (Fri Oct 11, 7 pm, Northwest Film Forum.) CHASE BURNS




BILLIE AND EMMA

Philippines, 2018, 107 min., Dir. Samantha Lee

In this sweet, mid-1990s coming-of-age tale, teenager Billie (Zar Donato) is shunned by her family in Manila for being a lesbian and sent to live with her aunt, a religion teacher at a Catholic girls school in rural San Isidro. In doing this, they think she'll turn out less gay—as if that ever works. There she meets the popular and smart Emma (Gabby Padilla), who hopes that her studies will help her leave the small town. The two grow closer as they are assigned to work on a school project together, but a complication in Emma's life threatens to rip them apart. (Fri Oct 11, 6:45 pm, Northwest Film Forum; Thurs Oct 17, 9 pm, Gay City.) JASMYNE KEIMIG




SEAHORSE: THE DAD WHO GAVE BIRTH

United Kingdom, 2019, 92 min., Dir. Jeanie Finlay

This British documentary follows Alfred "Freddy" McConnell, a single gay trans man on a quest to get pregnant and give birth to his own child. The crew had almost completely unrestricted access to McConnell's life, beginning with him stopping his testosterone treatments, navigating the transphobic health-care system, and up to the moment the baby arrives. While not uncommon, McConnell's path to fatherhood is still a particularly difficult and misunderstood one, with a British court recently ruling that he did not have the right to be legally recognized as the father on his child's birth certificate. Incredibly tender and moving, Seahorse is a compelling portrait of parenthood, gender, and family. I wept! (Sat Oct 12, 12:15 pm, Northwest Film Forum.) JASMYNE KEIMIG




SCREAM, QUEEN! MY NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET

USA, 2019, 99 min., Dir. Roman Chimienti, Tyler Jensen

The gayest slasher film ever made is getting a documentary. Obviously that film is A Nightmare on Elm Street 2: Freddy's Revenge (1985), a critical flop that's become a cult hit. In the sequel, the original film's lead female character was replaced with a male character, a choice that embeds a queer undercurrent throughout Elm Street 2. The film's screenwriter and director refused to acknowledge its gayness for years, but they have now reversed their position. (Sun Oct 13, 9 pm, Northwest Film Forum; Sat Oct 19, 2:30 pm, Northwest Film Forum.) CHASE BURNS




ZEN IN THE ICE RIFT

Italy, 2018, 90 min., Dir. Margherita Ferri

Teenage genderqueer hockey star Zen (Eleonora Conti) is constantly on the defensive in their rural Italian Alpine town. Bullied by the boys at their school and mocked by the girls, they are a mouthy outcast. But when schoolmate Vanessa (Susanna Acchiardi) has an unsatisfying sexual experience with her boyfriend, she runs away from town, seeking refuge in Zen's family's cabin. Obstinate at first, Zen cautiously begins to warm up to Vanessa. The film is gorgeously shot, high up in the Alps. Even though the ending is a bit unsatisfying, it's worth it just for Conti's explosive and vulnerable performance. (Tues Oct 15, 5 pm, Northwest Film Forum; Sat Oct 19, 7 pm, Gay City.) JASMYNE KEIMIG




QUEER JAPAN

USA/Japan, 2019, 100 min., Dir. Graham Kolbeins

This documentary features a giant inflatable latex pig—and by "giant," I mean like the size of a warehouse—that gives birth to little baby pigs. And by "little," I mean like the size of a full-grown human. That all happens at Department H, a hentai and bondage party in Japan that includes some of the wildest costumes I've ever seen. Queer Japan tightly explores various Japanese queer identities, snagging interviews with celebrities like erotic manga artist Gengoroh Tagame. Easy, fun, and highly recommended. (Wed Oct 16, 9:15 pm, Northwest Film Forum.) CHASE BURNS




GOOD KISSER

USA, 2019, 79 min., Dir. Wendy Jo Carlton

Threesomes can be tricky. This dynamic is the subject of local director and screenwriter Wendy Jo Carlton's Good Kisser. It opens with couple Kate (Rachel Paulson) and Jenna (Kari Alison Hodge) taking a rideshare to go have some hot threesome-times with the sexy and worldly Mia (Julia Eringer). What they don't know is that the introduction of a third party into their dynamic will expose faults in their relationship. (Sat Oct 19, 7 pm, Northwest Film Forum.) JASMYNE KEIMIG



PORTRAIT OF A LADY ON FIRE

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France, 2019, 119 min., Dir. Céline Sciamma

From Céline Sciamma (Girlhood), Portrait of a Lady on Fire is set in the 18th century, where young artist Marianne (Noémie Merlant) is commissioned to paint a portrait of Héloïse (Adèle Haenel) for potential suitors to fall in love with. One thing: Héloïse does not want her portrait done, as she does not want to get married. So Marianne poses as her maid to get close to the woman, completing the painting in secret. But of course this closeness and secretiveness makes them all hot for each other. Portrait has been getting rave reviews out of Cannes, becoming the first woman- directed film to take home the Queer Palm. (Sun Oct 20, 7 pm, SIFF Cinema Egyptian.) JASMYNE KEIMIG