Roaming wild in Toronto’s streets, three queer adolescents hone their survival skills and scheme to run amok in a gay club. Julien (Matteus Lunot), a brash runaway, serves as pack leader, with timid Otis (Harlow Joy) and buoyant Tony (Zion Matheson) following in his wake. When some impetuous petty crime admits them into the promised land (and ushers in exhilarating depictions of beat-driven youthful abandon), it also imperils Dawn (Miyoko Anderson), Julien’s de facto guardian. Once Dawn fails to return home, the guilt-ridden kids form a search party that ultimately uncovers darker realities.
Joseph Amenta’s first feature is an open-hearted love letter to childhood friendships and a powerful testament to the queer community’s perseverance and adaptability. Through rhythmic cutting and sublime compositions, they capture moments of revelry and repose, and coax increasingly complex performances from their young cast. Serving up a cocktail of irreverence and melancholy, Amenta lends intoxicating atmosphere and intimate understanding to these precious kids’ quest for belonging.
Q&A Sept 30 & Oct 2
More Films in this Series
Miryam Charles’ haunting work examines the circumstances surrounding her cousin Tessa’s death, while speculating on the life that she might've had. A lyrical reminder of violence’s capacity to rupture reality and shake the foundations of family.
A Syrian doctor struggles to hold on to his identity as his family adjusts to life in Canada. Director Antoine Bourges (Fail to Appear) continues his social realist project, turning a lens this time to struggles faced by new immigrants to Canada.
Something You Said Last Night
Having already suffered the humiliation of losing her job, Ren must now endure a week of summer vacation with her overbearing parents and extroverted, overachieving younger sister. A disarmingly intimate debut feature by Luis de Filippis.
North of Normal
Having spent her early years in a wilderness commune founded by her anti-establishment grandfather, Cea must shed her alternative upbringing and acclimatize to civilization when her mother, Michelle, desires even greater freedom.
Until Branches Bend
Discovering a potentially invasive insect inside a peach, fruit packer Robin immediately reports it. When management refuses to take action, she goes public with her concerns and precipitates a widescale shutdown in her Okanagan town.
You Can Live Forever
Set in a Jehovah’s Witness congregation, the film follows queer teenager Jamie as she resists the tight community hold while falling in love with Marike, a charming young Witness tasked with welcoming Jamie into the fold.
Golden Delicious is a coming-of-age story about an Asian-Canadian teenager who is torn between his girlfriend’s dreams of their future and his father’s ambition, all the while struggling with finding himself and his feelings for the boy next door.
When Time Got Louder
Leaving home for university, Abbie (Willow Shields) thrives and experiences self-actualization. However, she’s tormented by the knowledge that her brother Kayden (Jonathan Simao), who has autism and is non-verbal, is reeling in her absence.
I Like Movies
Intent on earning his film school tuition, a teenage cinephile lands a video store job. This humane comedy traces this pretentious curmudgeon’s path from practically sociopathic self-involvement to his first fraught encounters with self-awareness
James Hyslop, Alyson Richards, Alex Jordan
Alexandra Roberts, Danny Sedore
Casey MQ & Skyshaker
Joseph Amenta is a genderqueer filmmaker based in Toronto who focuses on post-genre stories immersed in the underbelly and subcultures of the LGBTQ community. They have produced, written, and directed short films that have been screened at international festivals and broadcast across Canada, Europe, and Africa. Their short Haus (2018) was selected for the International Competition at the 2019 Clermont-Ferrand International Short Film Festival, and their next short Flood (2019) premiered at Toronto International Film Festival. They received the Toronto Screenwriting Conference Breakthrough Artist Award for their script for Soft.