Wildness

Sun, May 19, 2013, 2:30pm
McMenamins Kennedy School Theater

Wildness captures the creativity and conflict that arose when a group of young queer artists of color organized a weekly performance party at the Silver Platter, an historic bar in the east end of Los Angeles’ MacArthur Park neighborhood that has been home to the Latino LGBT community since 1963. The party, also called Wildness, became an incubator for queer performers, punks and dance music aficionados who shared the space with the bar’s established clientele of immigrant trans women. This unexpected collision of communities became a platform for cross-generational and cross-cultural queer alliance.

With a touch of magical realism, the bar itself becomes a character in the film, whispering the histories of the LGBT community for whom it has provided sanctuary for generations, away “from the ignorance, the fear and hatred of the outside world.” Paying homage to the place so many called home, Wildness guides viewers through the Silver Platter’s colorful and tumultuous history to its present-day existence, complete with intoxicating party footage and a potent, genre-melding soundtrack.

In his stunning first feature film, director Wu Tsang succeeds in addressing issues of immigration, gentrification, identification, class and community with an exciting and authentic voice, utilizing creative twists on the standard documentary format.

In English and Spanish, with Spanish and English subtitles

Wildness: Dir Wu Tsang 2012 USA 73 min.

Community Partners: Causa Oregon; Portland Institute for Contemporary Art; Portland Latino Gay Pride