All The Queer Goodness At Sydney Film Festival 2024

All The Queer Goodness At Sydney Film Festival 2024
Image: Stills from 'I Saw The TV Glow', 'Việt And Nam' and 'Unicorns'. Source: Sydney Film Festival

Only a few weeks remain until the beginning of the Sydney Film Festival, one of Australia’s biggest and most prestigious film festivals that celebrates local and international cinema. 

The extensive program features over 200 films and events from June 5th-16th, with a number of these being unashamedly queer films that explore horror, humour and romance. Here are just some of the must-see queer films playing at SFF this year.

I Saw The TV Glow

Sydney Film Festival
Source: SFF

Having already sold out multiple screenings ahead of the festival, Jane Schoenburn’s I Saw The TV Glow is undoubtedly one of the most sought-after films at SFF this year. 

Centring on two teenagers who begin to unravel when their favourite late-night TV show is cancelled, the film has received widespread acclaim after running the international festival circuit. 

Lauded as a “profound must-see” by Vanity Fair, I Saw The TV Glow is expected to draw plenty of positive buzz at SFF and is one of the first films to add an extra screening to the lineup.  


Sydney Film Festival
Source: SFF

Queer and Hispanic comedian Julio Torres’s debut feature film Problemista is screening at SFF, a surreal and comical tale about a toymaker trying to navigate the bureaucracy of the US Immigration System.

Torres takes on the monumental task of writing, acting, directing and starring in the film alongside fellow queer actor Tilda Swinton, as well as RZA and Greta Lee. 

Gathering plenty of positive buzz after a US opening in March, SFF’s screenings of Problemista are a fantastic opportunity to see this ahead of an uncertain wide Australian release.


Sydney Film Festival
Source: SFF

Iconic trans actress Hunter Schafer takes on her first lead role in Cuckoo, a horror film that follows a 17-year old American girl as she uncovers the dark secrets of a resort in the Bavarian Alps. 

After premiering earlier this year at the Berlin Film Festival, the film has garnered praise for its oddball premise and the performance of Schafer that Screen International says mixes “androgynous frailty with tough-girl attitude.” 

Though a less explicitly queer film than others listed here, a chance to see Schafer take on a leading role is clearly hard to miss with all sessions currently sold out. Keep an eye out for a fourth screening.  

Woman Of… 

Sydney Film Festival
Source: SFF

A nominee for the Golden Lion at last year’s Venice Film Festival, Woman Of… is a tale about 45 years in the life of trans woman Aniela (Małgorzata Hajewska-Krzysztofik), directed by Michał Englert and Małgorzata Szumowska.

As she comes out, she has to step into the unwelcoming world of conservative Poland, where transphobia remains a constant in her life. 

This multi-decade portrait of a trans woman has garnered praise for the remarkable depth of its characters and the attention it pays to Poland’s poor track record on LGBTQI+ rights. 


Source: SFF

This directorial collaboration between El Hosaini and Krishna Floyd is a ‘stirring queer romance’ set in London’s Gaysian scene between a mechanic, Luke (Ben Hardy) and a drag queen Aysha (Jason Patel). As the two develop feelings for one another, societal expectations weigh heavily down on them.

Featuring a spellbinding debut performance from Jason Patel, Unicorns is a film about “twin journeys towards self-acceptance” that’s gotten stellar reviews in its festival appearances thus far. 


Source: SFF

Lia, a retired Georgian teacher, sets off to fulfil the dying wish of her sister – to find her estranged trans niece, Tekla. Accompanied by a lawyer who becomes an unlikely friend, the two set off to find Tekla in the queer community of Istanbul. 

Crossing received the Teddy Jury Award at Berlin Film Festival earlier this year, receiving praise across the board for its poetic take on the road movie and earnest celebration of Istanbul’s trans community. 

Stress Positions

Source: SFF

The debut feature from Theda Hammel is a witty look back at the ails of 2020, as a gay divorcee struggles to live alongside his ex and other house callers during the heights of the COVID era.

Largely lauded as an amusing reflection of those accursed times, Stress Positions looks to make you laugh and reflect in equal measure. Director Hammel will be in attendance at these screenings as a special guest. 

Việt And Nam

Source: SFF

This tender gay romance follows the story of two miners in Vietnam, who put their lives on the line for their job. Nonetheless, Nam and Việt find meaning in an erotic connection that they both know is full of complications. 

Sydney Film Festival is one of the first places in the world where you can see the stirring Việt And Nam from young director Trương Minh Quý, having only recently debuted at Cannes where it picked up a Queer Palm nomination. Director Minh Quý and producer Nguyễn Thị Xuân Trang are set to appear as special guests. 

Many more queer films are playing across the huge lineup of 2024’s Sydney Film Festival, which is set to begin on June 5th and conclude on June 16th. To view the full program of films and book tickets, head to

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