Queer as Films: Southern Comfort

09 July 2010

PT Foundation & Seksualiti Merdeka present
Queer As Films

(90mins; 2001; English)

“Southern Comfort” is a documentary directed by Kate Davis about the life of Robert Eads, a 52-year-old female-to-male transsexual who lives in the back hills of Georgia, one of the southern states in the USA. Describing himself as "a hillbilly and proud of it," Robert cuts a striking figure: sharp-tongued, bearded, tobacco pipe in hand. Robert passes so well as a male that the local Klu Klux Klan even tried to recruit him to become a member.

Though his home is nestled among tranquil hills dotted with hay bales, Robert confronts a world as hostile to him as if he were an African American in the ante-bellum South. He was diagnosed with ovarian cancer, then turned away by more than two dozen doctors who feared that taking on a transgendered patient might harm their practice.

Southern Comfort follows the final year of Robert Eads' life. Beginning in spring, he falls deeply in love with Lola Cola, a male-to-female transsexual. That summer, his mother and father drive ten hours to visit their "lost daughter," a trip they know may be their last. His final dream is to make it to the Southern Comfort Conference in Atlanta, the nation's preeminent transgender gathering. Even as his health deteriorates, he addresses a crowd of 500 and takes Lola to "the prom that never was."

The film also features Robert’s friends – including fellow female-to-male transsexual Maxwell Anderson, and Tom and Debbie King who saved Robert's life as he collapsed in a pool of his own blood – the voices in Southern Comfort are not only rarely heard, but also are commonly thought to be non-existent.

With its rare blend of humor, romance, and tragedy, the film is deeply moving; Robert's lifelong struggle to have his outer appearance match his inner feeling is a salient theme in the movie. All persons portrayed in the movie wrestle with themes of rejection from others, rejection of self, feeling ostracised from humanity and ultimately crafting their own lives and personal support systems.

There will be a discussion following the screening with invited speakers about issues surrounding the transsexual experience in Malaysia.

You can read more about the documentary at http://www.nextwavefilms.com/southern/


Date: Sun 18 Jul 2010
Time: 3pm
Venue: The Annexe Gallery, 2nd Flr, Central Market Annexe, KL
Admission: FREE!
Enquiries: 03 4044 4611 (PT Foundation), 03 2070 1137 (The Annexe Gallery)

This is a safe space - by invitation only - which will be checked against a register at the door. Please email to register for this event: queerasfilms@ptfmalaysia.org include your name, age, and who you are bringing along, if any.

Please refrain from posting this event on blogs, or anywhere else without permission from the organisers. Thanks!


Wanna be part of something irresistible and fabulous?
Wanna watch amazing films about being queer in a safe, inclusive environment with friends?
Wanna see if the sexuality rights movement can have relevance for us in Malaysia?

Now you can… At Queer As Films, brought to you by PT Foundation and The Seksualiti Merdeka. Once a month (Sundays at 3pm) at The Annexe Gallery, you're invited to watch some movies with us and join frank discussions with film critics, well known personalities and other minor celebrities we love.

Click here to watch the trailer!

And click here to see the facebook event!

Hope to see you guys there!

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