The World Unseen
The World Unseen is a lesbian-themed movie written and directed by Shamim Sarif, adapted from her own novel. In 1950s South Africa, a land torn apart by apartheid, Amina epitomizes individuality and freedom. She runs the Location Café, a haven of fun, food, and festivities open to all. Amina defines her own laws and lives on her own terms, undeterred by the reproving police, and the disparaging Indian community. Miriam demurely follows conventions and makes no demands on life. Her world is confined to being a doting mother to her three children, and a subservient wife to her chauvinistic husband Omar. Amina has a covert business partner, Jacob, who is barred from owning a business because the State considers him to be ‘coloured’. He is attracted to Madeleine, a local white postmistress, but the indignities and injustices of the prevalent law thwart their desire to pursue a relationship. Omar’s sister Rehmat married a white man, against rules that forbid mixed marriages. When she needs protection from police, Amina shelters her, and her charm and strength of character captivate Miriam, who secretly rejoices when Amina accepts a farming job in her backyard. Amina notices Miriam’s inherent kindness and silent dedication, and the mutual attraction between them grows. They bare their hearts to each other and their emotions get entangled. They contrive another reason to meet: driving lessons. The inescapable social distance between them makes them question their feelings, but, in the midst of hatred and oppression, their only refuge is love. In the resplendent South African landscape, with retro music strewn in the background, The World Unseen explores Miriam’s relationship with Amina and how it empowers her to make personal choices that change her world. The protagonists are portrayed by Lisa Ray and Sheetal Shethое.
Spider Lilies is a Taiwanese film written by Singing Chen and directed by Zero Chou. I tells the story of Jade, a young woman who supplement her income on the Internet by conversing or offering sensual shows on a paying adult site. The connections on Jade’s profil are few and unsatisfactory for her employer, even if she has a loyal following. So Jade decides to darken her look and gets a tattoo. She goes to a shop run by Takeko, a woman known for her talent and knowledge in the tattoo art. She is actually the first love of Jade. This former relationship remain alive in the memory of the tattoo artist, but her feelings are repressed as a result of a dramatic event. Jade and Takeko are portrayed by Rainie Yang and Isabella Leong.
In The Secrets, two brilliant young women discover their own voices in a repressive orthodox culture where females are forbidden to sing, let alone speak out. Naomi, the studious, devoutly religious daughter of a prominent rabbi, convinces her father to postpone her marriage for a year so that she might study at a Jewish seminary for women in the ancient Kabalistic seat of Safed. Naomi’s quest for individuality takes a defiant turn when she befriends Michelle, a free-spirited and equally headstrong fellow student. When the pair encounters a mysterious, ailing foreigner with a disturbing past named Anouk (the iconic French actress Fanny Ardant) they begin a risky journey into forbidden realms. In the hopes of easing her suffering, Naomi and Michelle secretly lead Anouk through a series of Kabalistic cleansing rituals. The process opens up overwhelming new horizons for the girls who find themselves caught between the rigid male establishment they grew up in, and the desire to be true to themselves, no matter the cost.
Water Lilies, also known as Naissance des Pieuvres (meaning “birth of the octopuses”), is a 2007 French drama film and the debut as a screenwriter and director of Céline Sciamma. Set during a sultry summer in a French suburb, Marie is desperate to join the local pool’s synchronized swimming team, but is her interest solely for the sake of sport or for a chance to get close to Floriane, the bad girl of the team? Sciamma, and the two leads, capture the uncertainty of teenage sexuality with a sympathetic eye in this delicate drama of the angst of coming-of-age. Marie, Anne and Floriane are portrayed by Pauline Acquart, Louise Blachère and Adèle Haenel.