CSUN’s Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgendered Alliance held their second annual Out For Reel film festival last week at the USU Theater.
The first night of festivities included “Gay Tube,” which showcased a collection of LGBT-themed short films on YouTube. Highlights included the MAD TV sketch, “It’s a Football Thing” and Jonlajoie’s “Being Gay Commercial.”
On the second day the festival featured three student films. Two were created by LGBTA members and the third was submitted by a non-CSUN student from San Diego.
The films shown were “Summer Storm” and “But I’m a Cheerleader.”
“‘Summer Storm’ was really good,” said Caroline Jones, a freshman music major. “I never really thought about how people take the LGBT community outside of America that often. It showed that there really isn’t that big of a difference between what youth go through over here and anywhere else in the world.”
“Summer Storm” is a foreign film and a coming of age story about a teenager who falls in love with his best friend and struggles to deal with his feelings.
“‘But I’m a Cheerleader’ is an amazing film,” Jones said. “Even though it’s a comedy, it definitely has some serious issues that it hits…Going to a program where they’re trying to make you straight is an extremely painful thing, which I have luckily never had to experience.”
“But I’m a Cheerleader” is a satirical movie about a teenage girl who realizes she is lesbian when her parents ship her off to a camp meant to turn gay teenagers straight.
“I think that it could have gone better,” Jones said of the event. “But I definitely think that it was really good about bringing together the LGBT community on campus to watch movies that were LGBT-themed or had LGBT writers or directors.”
Zandra Arriola, a freshman health science major, said, “Gay movies aren’t very mainstream. I was exposed to films I had never even heard of before.”
Arriola said she wished there had been more student film submissions but felt the event was still important.
“We’re very much invisible,” Arriola said of LGBTA. “Not a lot of people know about our club. I know there’s a lot more gay people on campus.”
Minda Greenberg, a junior geography major and treasurer for the LGBTA, said she felt Out For Reel went well and that the club learned what they could improve on next year.
“We have been working on publicizing the club,” Greenberg said. “I think we just need to get the word out there more.”
“The film festival is a chance to see creative outputs from the LGBT community,” Greenberg said. “It’s important to give LGBT students an opportunity to spend time with others like them and to give anyone wanting to learn more about the LGBT community the chance to do so.”
“I feel that having queer events on campus is very important because we need to have a presence and be recognized as part of the CSUN community as a whole,” said LGBTA Secretary Eric Koller, a junior languages and cultures major.
LGBTA will be recognizing the National Day of Silence on Friday, April 25 and will be co-hosting the Queer Studies Minor Kickoff on May 1 at 5 p.m. in the USU Grand Salon, followed by the panel “Out at CSUN Across the Generations” at 7 p.m.