I bet you didn’t know about this little but truly culture-bending Film Festival: SAFF right in the heart of your city?

For those who love immersing themselves in film and culture, this festival will take you all the way to South Asia very far from your Western customs, ideologies, and education. Take a short trip with BKM to our top 3 picks. Interestingly, 3 films in the fest are about LGBT issues of sexual & gender identity, which one can imagine is a lot harder to fund & market in the East!

Also, my absolute fave pick Lipstick Under My Burkah was banned in India so of course I want to see it!


South Asian Film Festival Montréal is committed to showcasing new and artistic work that fosters discussion and explores the worlds we inhabit; aiming to entertain, inform and empower audiences. The Festival also organizes animated, post-screening audience talkbacks; discussions with distinguished panelists; and presentations by filmmakers, some traveling from South Asia and other parts of the world. New this year are films in competition, with awards given to the best short and feature-length films.

All the Films are being shown @ Concordia University, in the  J.A. DE SEVE CINEMA

OCTOBER, 28 2017 | 3:00 pm

If you think coming out of the closet is tough on this side of the globe, think again. Escaping Agra is a short documentary about Naveen Bhat, who is trapped in India after their parents find out about their gender and sexual orientation, and their journey to battle them in court and piece their life back together. Due to the social awareness that the director wishes to spread, this film is actually being offered for FREE.
You can RSVP your spot. 

NOVEMBER, 4 2017 | 7:00 pm

As a woman of European parents,  but born in Canada I have often asked myself how I feel about the burkah and I am certain that women of South Asia have their feelings on my bikini!

Trapped in their own worlds, four women claim their desires through secret acts of rebellion In rural India, a burkha-clad college girl struggles with issues of cultural identity and her aspirations to become a pop singer. A young two-timing beautician seeks to escape the claustrophobia of her small town. An oppressed housewife and mother of three lives the alternate life of an enterprising saleswoman. A 55-year-old widow rediscovers her sexuality through a phone romance. Caught in a conservative society, these women set forth to break the mold, in search of a little freedom.

NOVEMBER, 3 2017 | 7:00 pm

Having been to India and seen the Hijiras live, I strongly suggest watching this impactful documentary on how a completely other part of the word views gender and identity. You will be quite surprised to learn that in some ways they are more open than we are but in others, not so much. This is likely to be very colorful and informative.

Courtesy the KASHISH Global Initiative, TRANSINDIA is a moving documentary exploring the Transgender community also known as Hijras, in Ahmedabad, India. Transindia takes you on a journey on their true lifestyles, a discovery of their beliefs and cultures.

October 27-29 & November 3-5, 2017

Tickets: $7 (if purchased before the screening via SAFFM website), $10 at the door

*New this year: Festival Passport- $30 for the entire festival, including all screenings