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Rosa Rugosa film image

Xinema Program 6: Roleplay, Fantasy, PLEASURE!

Image: Rosa Rugosa, Xinema Program 6

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XINEMA is thrilled to present a duo of gender-defying films — a 2002 feature-length exotic pirate adventure and a 2013 short film, a tender homage to the Czech feminist filmmaker, Věra Chytilová.

Join us for a night of fantasy, strap-ons, and (pirate’s) booty.

Girl King (2002) Ileana Pietrobruno 80 min

With a fistful of fetish in every frame, Girl King delivers a sexy, drag king swashbuckler.

Pirates capture a naïve Butch and promise him that if he can find the Queen’s stolen treasure, they will be give him his heart’s desire—the seductive femme Claudia. Soon Butch is sailing on treacherous seas, swept away by dangerous desires where tops are bottomed, pirate captains are seduced by tranny sailors and cross-dressing femmes pack a wallop. With the help of the mysterious Easy and the infamous pirate Captain Candy, can Butch find the treasure in time to restore the natural attraction between butch and femme?

Decidedly tongue-in-cheek, this clever tale uses a pastiche of pillaged imagery to lead us into the uncharted oceans of dyke desire. A sweetly perverse fable for drag kings, gender-benders and those who adore them.

Advisory: this film contains graphic sexual imagery

& Rosa Rugosa (2013) Jaewoo Kang 5:44 min
Rosa Rugosa is a tender and thoughtful depiction of a gay man’s gender insecurities. Shot on 16mm film, a formal sensitivity is achieved at the core of the work. The marks and imperfections of film speaks to the self-reflexive examination of heteronormative desire through the narrator’s internal monologue.


Q&A with directors Ileana Pietrobruno and Jaewoo Kang


XINEMA is an ongoing series that showcases emerging and established experimental filmmakers within and around “Vancouver”, BC curated by Celina de Leon and Sidney Gordon. They aim to strengthen and preserve the experimental film scene by creating a space for open conversation, skill-sharing, and community.

Image: Jaewoo Kang, still from Rosa Rugosa, 2013, 16mm transferred to digital, 5:44 min.
Courtesy of the Artist.


Ileana Pietrobruno and Jaewood King

Country of Origin




90 min

Book Tickets

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