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The BronzeLens Film Festival celebrates 10 years with its 2019 fest, running August 21–25 at the Hyatt Regency Atlanta downtown. The opening-night film is the 2019 horror mystery Don’t Let Go, featuring David Oyelowo, Storm Reid and Mykelti Williamson. Admission is $25.

The fest lineup includes daily screenings of new work — domestic and international features, documentaries, short documentaries, student films, webisodes and music videos — from independent filmmakers worldwide. The event includes workshops, panel discussions, the Women SuperStars Luncheon, All-Shorts All Night + Day and the BronzeLens Awards. Single-screening tickets ($15), day passes ($75 and $175) and fest-wide passes ($50–$300) are available on the website.

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“Queering Our Culture” on August 22

The Atlanta LGBTQ nonprofit Touching Up Our Roots will hold an August 22 screening event for several shorts films. The evening, titled Queering Our Culture: Spotlighting Local LGBTQ Film, is hosted by Atlanta Pride and begins at 7 p.m. at the Phillip Rush Center Annex behind Rush Center, 1530 DeKalb Avenue NE. Admission is free.

The screening includes the world premiere of the gonzo comedy short Head to Head, which pits lesbian activist and historian Maria Helena Dolan against anti-gay-rights activist Anita Bryant. The short was shot by Atlanta filmmakers Ryan Lambert and Shane Dedman and directed by Lambert.

A 6 p.m. preshow presentation features a filmed 30-minute interview with Berl Boykin (1944–2018), who helped found the Georgia Gay Liberation Front in 1969 and was the marshal for Atlanta’s first Pride March in 1971.

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Black comedy Conspirators of Pleasure screens

Jan Švankmajer

Czech filmmaker Jan Švankmajer’s bizarre black comedy Conspirators of Pleasure will screen September 7 at The Bakery Atlanta in conjunction with a game and exhibition titled The Polymorph Bodyshop from the surrealist collective Peculiar Mormyrid. (Mormyrid are African freshwater fish.) Peculiar Mormyrid calls itself a “meeting place for surrealist dreamers, revolutionaries, artists and researchers.” The free screening begins at 7 p.m. About 30 minutes of surrealist shorts will follow.

Švankmajer’s film is described as a psychological, erotic yet fascinating film with practically no dialogue. It features music, a manual on self-abuse, observations from the Marquis de Sade and Sigmund Freud and something of a “recipe book of great ideas,” according to Peculiar Mormyrid. The New York Times called Švankmajer “a surrealist visionary” and the 1996 film “seriously funny and cheekily subversive.”

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