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The International Film Festival Rotterdam

Sunday January 26, Rotterdam Pathe Theatre, 11:57 PM Local Time

This week, the city of Rotterdam is screening hundreds of international movies for its annual Film Festival. Though I'm not much of a film connoisseur, and have very little experience with indie films, exchange is all about trying and experiencing new things, and so I decided to remove myself from my comfort zone by watching a movie.

You may the above statement was crafted with sarcasm. It wasn't. You'll see why soon.

As the write-up we found was in Dutch, our movie selection was based on three essential criteria:

1. The title of the movie

2. Its accompanying promotional photo

3. The time of its showing

As a result, we had very little idea what we were getting ourselves into.

Our film selection was a Swedish love story about a cross-dresser and his straight lover. I think that it's really cool that this film was an opening feature for the festival, as even five to ten years ago, that may not have been the case. I have nothing but support for the LGBTQ community, however, regardless of the protagonists' genders in a movie, this type of film was a little too graphic for my tastes. I didn't want to avert my eyes so as to offend the actors and director who were sitting amongst us in the crowd, but at the same time, I was a bit uncomfortable with the visuals on screen.

But, again, exchange is all about new experiences. And sometimes, the uncomfortable experiences can be the most memorable ones.

And besides, now we have this classy International Film Festival Rotterdam photo to show just how cultured and artsy we truly are!


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