Tag Archives: blue is the warmest colour

GGL Run down of 2013

28 Dec

It’s been a busy year on the scene in lesbian London! There’s been a lot of changes, highs and lows. Here’s our run down of 2013.

Theatre and Film

LGBT Theatre and in particular female leading casts and lesbian themed films were centre stage this year. Halbwelt Kultur was a hugely popular show based on the women of the Weimar Republic and dealing with some famous lesbian relationships, this show went from strength to strength this year. Then there was the Canne’s Palme, d’Or winner Blue is the Warmest Colour, a coming of age tale realistically depicting a lesbian relationship warts and all which wowed audiences everywhere. Other theatre mentions include Sappho and Spring Tide.

Candy Bar announces it’s closing

The iconic Candy Bar announced this year that it will be closing it’s doors in Jan 2014 after an increase in rent and the economic downturn meant that it could not feasibly stay open in future. Candy Bar has been open since the 1990’s and became the most popular lesbian bar in London. It has a variety of nights on appealing to a range of tastes and a few years ago featured in a documentary about lesbians in London, ‘Candy Bar Girls’. It was recently taken over by the Ku bar group and refurbished but despite all of this tough economic times still got the better of it.  Never fear however! Candy Bar will be moving to the Ku Bar on Frith Street! So no need to panic ladies, Candy Bar’s new incarnation will be with us soon with a host of parties in Soho for women!

New bars and nights

A host of exciting and innovative new nights appeared this year including the fun and fancy free TLC, the concept night, Create, and new east London night Culture Clash. Plus of course new bar Labels on Frith Street – another great space for lesbians in the heart of Soho.

Special mentions

Lot’s of exciting parties have been on for lesbians this year making 2013 a more eclectic one for lesbians looking for great nights out. Chica Bonita appeared at Candy Bar with it’s special brand of female party, celebrating women with some very talented dancers and performers. Unskinny Bop moved back to it’s spiritual home at the Star of Bethnal Green pub and is still going strong as one of the best queer nights on the scene. Live music night Chick Habit at Candy Bar managed to bag Chvrches singer Lauren Mayberry for a DJ set, and band HAIM. Cabaret and queer nights took hold at Candy Bar with Adam All Drag’s (@AdamAll_Drag) special brand of party – Boi Box. Other nights still drawing in the London lesbian crowd in droves include our faves Southbank Surfing, Bijou Cocktail Social and Bar Wotever.

Looking forward

Next year should see some fantastic nights lined up including the Lesbian Prom in March – a huge event at Scala; plus the first ever Winter Pride from the L-Wired ladies. With Candy Bar moving to Frith street we can’t wait to see what nights they’ll have on for us there, plus who knows what’s in store all over London?? We’ll be sure to let you know!

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Review: Blue Is The Warmest Colour

29 Nov

In my entire life, I’ve only ever seen four films with lesbian relationships at their core in a mainstream cinema. Four. So to say I was intrigued to see this year’s Cannes Palme d’Or winner Blue Is The Warmest Colour would be an understatement. A French coming-of-age love story between two women, the film has made headlines for its subject matter, its seven-minute sex scene and its harsh director. But I went into Blue Is The Warmest Colour with an open mind and an empty bladder – I made sure of this, what with it being three hours long…

Blue is the Warmest Colour

Blue is the warmest colour

The story goes thusly: Adele is 17 and in her final year at school. She has a boyfriend but is struggling with her sexuality, confiding to a gay friend that she feels like “she’s faking it.” She goes with him to a gay bar and meets blue-haired Emma who’s in her final year of a Fine Arts degree. They develop a friendship, have intense conversations about philosopy and art (as only French films do) and eventually end up together and in bed, having frantic, volcanic sex in the film’s much-discussed extended sex scene.

I was dreading the sex scenes: after all, what does a straight director know about lesbian sex? But my fears were unfounded. Sure, the sex might not be entirely accurate, but it is raw, intense and alive and thus goes some way to depicting the overwhelming nature of a defining first love. Plus, it’s not at all what you take away from the film – that honour goes to heartache.

Despite what the reviews and the snide comments would have you believe, the film is not about sex which takes up around ten minutes of a 180-minute film. The film is about coming-of-age and realisation, it’s about a character-defining intense relationship that stutters to life, is all-consuming and then, gradually, falls apart, leaving its two key protagonists changed forever. It’s about that love in your life that you never quite get over.

Is it too long at three hours? Yes of course it is. It takes almost an hour for Adele to meet Emma but their relationship and their intoxicating passion is beautifully depicted by both actresses (Lea Seydoux and Adele Exarchopoulos). The film is also packed with drawn-out close-ups and if you’re uncomfortable watching people eat, take a strong stomach as there are a whole lot of oysters and spaghetti involved.

In the end though, director Abdellatif Kechiche has managed to create a truly special piece of cinema, even if it is at times indulgent and overlong. Sadly, both Seydoux and Exarchopoulos complained about mistreatment on set and have stated they will never work with Kechiche again. Given that, it’s even more remarkable they were able to make the moving film they have.

Reposted from the Blog of Clare Lydon.  Please pop over and follow for more from Clare and/or to share –  Clare Lydon’s blog  >>>

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