Several years ago, I felt inspired to contribute a “Heresy” — a fan-type piece on a cultural artifact, more or less lesbian, with which one is obsessed — to the Brussels-based feminist magazine Girls Like US / GLU.

GLU Issue #3: Generations

As with writing for “community” legacy publications and presses like Cleis Press, The Lambda Book Review, or Sinister Wisdom, I received a prickle of wish-fulfillment at submitting to GLU ; there’s heritage and pride tied up in getting to brush shoulders with yesterday’s arts & letters cool girls; writing is less of a competition for me than it is a steady quest…

Rape reckoning and revenge aplenty; the lesbian Civil Rights activist you’ve been dying to meet; Billie Holiday’s middle finger; Jane Fonda, uncensored.

Follow list of March 2021 recommendations on Letterboxd.

☐ F.T.A.

Director: Francine Parker

Writers: Michael Alaimo, Len Chandler, Pamela Donegan, Jane Fonda, Rita Martinson, Robin Menken, Holly Near, Donald Sutherland, Dalton Trumbo, and Nancy Dowd; based on the book by Dalton Trumbo

Year: 1972

Country: United States

Runtime: 1 hour, 37 minutes

Release: Available to stream on Kino Marquee beginning March 5, 2021

Follow: @JaneFonda

Long censored and finally available to the masses, the documentary F.T.A. follows a performance…

All my experience concerning masturbation in little girls has related to the clitoris and not to the regions of the external genitalia that are important in later sexual functioning. I am even doubtful whether a female child can be led by the influence of seduction to anything other than clitoridal masturbation.

Three Essays on the Theory of Sexuality, Sigmund Freud, 1905

I.

What I ultimately want is something that a ledger bodaciously named “Lesbian Herstory Archives” cannot quite provide; something I crave more from a place of precariousness than privilege, though soliciting it always makes me sweat, as though I…

‘Her Smell’ is largely set in the labyrinthine underworld of punk venue green rooms. The already warped strain even further under the weight of audience hunger and the an opening act’s reverb. Alex Ross Perry’s latest dizzies and asphyxiates the viewer with the minutiae of sex, drugs, and rock ‘n roll. Only here, there are (mercifully) no zipless fucks. The coke? Abundant. The music itself is unreliable, but thrills when Something She’s erratic frontwoman Becky Something (Elisabeth Moss) manages to strike a haphazard balance between her Spin Magazine-gracing glory days and the niche following that still awaits her.

‘Her Smell’…

JT LeRoy, Justin Kelly’s new biopic on the creation and exposure of the cult author of the same pen name, opens with an Oscar Wilde epigraph: The truth is rarely pure and never simple. This sentiment, repurposed from a puckish 1890s play to introduce Kelly’s film on punking 1990s celebrity, immediately sits uneasily in 2019’s bellies. We need straight answers and need them now. The future of civilization seems to depend on digestibility. JT LeRoy is a movie suiting those who, at minimum, can entertain the idea that we might not get what we desperately want.

First invented by the…

‘But I’m a Cheerleader’ comes of age.

Bursts of orange as tempting as pre-pandemic citrus palomas with friends. An excess of sporty pinks that make Legally Blonde seem like child’s play. Nursery room blues that confirm that ‘blue’ is not only the warmest color, but most fun.

Image courtesy Lionsgate

A cult classic since the moment it premiered at Sundance Film Festival in 1999, But I’m a Cheerleader’s greatest strength has always been its love of color and its indicative power; here, raucous pops of pigment are beacons in adolescence’s darkest hours, illuminating gender, difference, youth, and yearning better than any whimsy-filled…

Julie Andrews plays an actress married to a director in husband Blake Edward’s ‘S.O.B.’ (1981)

Film history is rife with dream teams, all too frequently auteur-muse in nature: von Sternberg and Dietrich, Godard and Karina, Tarantino and Pitt. But few have surpassed Julie Andrews and Blake Edwards in talent, daring, or capacity for mischief. After falling in love on the set of Edwards’ ill-received and costly spy musical Darling Lili, the reluctant show business couple married in 1969. Both boasted celebrated careers ahead of that: She was synonymous with Maria von Trapp; he’d conjured up Pink Panther and Breakfast at Tiffany’s. But it’s the six films they worked on together — heady espionage dramas and…

Nightmare (dir. Romano Scavolini, 1981)

Romano Scavolini’s 1981 slasher flick Nightmare is certain about three things: One, little George Tatum, well-mannered and pure, walked in on a dominatrix straddling his father and the experience irreparably destroyed his sanity. Two, despite his persisting fear of feminine wiles, George managed to have a son, C.J., who has inherited his own father’s patricidal tendencies. Three, when a horror film has to choose between guts and glory, guts are universally preferred. Nightmare’s three truths work together. …

While I have been repeatedly ensnared by “Chloe in the Afternoon” (the tenderest of hotel rendezvous anthems) and “Your Lips Are Red” (“Your lips are red / My face is red from reading your red lips”), it was not until the fitful static of April that I really began to find Annie Clark sexy.

As everyone’s world became plasticine — I recall those final days working in DUMBO, watching girl fridays haul bulky HP monitors aboard the F Train like bastard children — so too did my desire. Abruptly, I was working from home, masked to the gills in neoprene…

Life, or at least the way we dwell online, has vastly sped up. It’s not something I’d mourned, though I figured the days of thoughtful, clandestine responses to my own writing were largely over. I am fortunate, one, to have been mistaken and, two, to be able to make private exchanges public access.

In January of this year, shortly after reviewing Tracy Heather Strain’s underappreciated documentary on the American writer Lorraine Hansberry, I received an email from a woman I’ve never met. …

Sarah Fonseca

Sarah Fonseca is a publicly-educated nonfiction writer from the Georgia foothills who lives in New York City.

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