Acts of Love - 2021

Acts of Love - 2021

💌 📹 👨‍👨‍👦‍👦 💦 🛋 🍆 📞 🍻 🎱 📸 🛌 ⏰ ☕ 🎵 🚿 📺 📄 🚗 🏡 👨‍❤️‍💋‍👨 🎁 💔 🐶 🤕 🚕 🕳 📱 ❤️ 👩‍👦 ✈️ 💞.

“When his older boyfriend loses interest in him, the filmmaker relocates to Chicago and uses dating apps to cast new lovers in an amorphous project about attraction, rejection, compatibility and attachment. His mom hates the concept and offers her honest opinions throughout the process. Her amusing role as a sounding board prevents the experiment from becoming an aimless or narcissistic way of dealing with a break-up. Blending pop-up photos, scripted and unscripted scenes, this hybrid picks up on the vulnerability and protections men put up in sexual scenarios, and discovers a meaning of love where investment in a relationship isn’t measured by a partner’s commitment but by your own – to pleasing yourself. Who you love can be determined by who fits you best, whose body is your landscape and how well you travel together. The director searches for love in the other, and with the help of his mother, finds it within himself.” -Angie Driscoll, Hot Docs

– a film by Isidore Bethel and Francis Leplay / produced by Lucie Rego and Pauline Tran Van Lieu (Hutong Productions, France), Jamie Gonçalves (Sin Sitio Cine, USA), Isidore Bethel, and Francis Leplay / photographed by Ryan Saunders

Hutong Productions, Sin Sitio Cine, Outplay Films (international sales)

– Hot Docs (Nightvision program), Thessaloniki Documentary Festival (Newcomers competition), Transilvania International Film Festival (What’s Up Doc? program), Zurich LGBT Film Festival (Pink Apple)

– Île-de-France region writing grant, Agora Docs in Progress (Thessaloniki Documentary Festival), Eurodoc

– 71 minutes

SCREENINGS:
– April 29 – May 9, 2021 in Canada and worldwide for those with industry accreditation at Hot Docs
– June 24 – July 4, 2021 online throughout Greece and in-person on June 28, 2021 at the John Cassavetes open-air theater at 9:15pm at the Thessaloniki Documentary Festival
– July 24, 2021 at ARTA Cinema at 2:30pm and July 25, 2021 at Muzeul de Artă at 7:30pm at the Transilvania International Film Festival
– September 15, 2021 at Arthouse Uto at 9pm at the Zurich LGBT Film Festival

PRESS:
The Hollywood Reporter: An “exciting, genre-bending film” that “proves that it’s worth taking risks – in art and in romance.”
NOW Magazine: “A bold, brave look at intimacy, honesty and the power dynamics that exist both in interpersonal relationships and between artist and subject.” (4/5 Ns)
Filmmaker: “Acts of Love is simultaneously discomfiting and meditative, its locked-down frames capturing troublesome scenarios building to an unexpectedly cathartic ending.”
A Moveable Fest: “The film feels as if it’s capturing raw emotions more than manufacturing them, with a self-consciousness that’s particularly impressive when Bethel is both the film’s driving creative force and its central subject.”
POV Magazine: “A thoughtful study of love and heartbreak, but ultimately a celebration of savouring the encounters that define us throughout our journeys.”
One Movie, Our Views: “A daring and exciting hybrid documentary…the film itself becomes surprisingly moving, building towards an incredible final sequence of images that ends this journey on a deeply resonant note.” (3.5/4 stars)
ForReel Movies: While Bethel “wades through footage to find the purpose of his production, we as an audience get to watch him wade through hopes, desires, and fantasies to find what it actually means to love people and to cherish the experiences they offer.”
KinoCulture Montréal: “A one-way mirror behind which hides a budding filmmaker who’s shy despite his appearance – or who acts that way – who’s aware of his actions, who’s wildly in love with film and cameras. He’s a filmmaker who unsettles us, who deliberately disorients. But that’s how true moving image makers assert themselves.”
Il Manifesto: “Cinema becomes an instrument for both showing and seducing – and it’s almost never the person behind the camera who’s leading the game…When sex and art blur, where’s the line between simulation and truth?”
– on NOW Magazine’s top “12 must-see films according to NOW critics,” Yohomo’s “10 Queer Films to Watch at Hot Docs,” The Queer Review’s “LGBTQ+ highlights at Hot Docs 2021”, and Lifo Magazine’s (“15 Unmissable Films at the 23rd Thessaloniki Documentary Festival”) lists

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