Leather Archives & Museum Announces New Film Series “Fetish Film Forum” March-December 2023

The Leather Archives & Museum is thrilled to announce Fetish Film Forum, a new monthly screening series about non-normative sex, relationships, and art. These ten erotic films spanning nine countries and six decades are visceral explorations of fetish, kink, leather, and BDSM, kicking off in March with the whimsical Sundance winner Secretary (2002) and concluding with nunsploitation stunner Cristiana: Devil Nun (1972) in December.

Screenings are March-December, 2023, held the 3rd Saturday of the month at 7pm at the Leather Archives & Museum (6418 N Greenview Ave, Chicago, IL), and post-screening discussions are included with all screenings. Tickets can be purchased in advance through the LA&M’s website and cost $10 per screening, or $8 for LA&M Members with an active membership. A Season Pass to see all ten films costs $80 for General Public, or $70 for LA&M Members. General Admission tickets include a 30-day membership to the LA&M.

Perspectives on fetish, kink, leather, and BDSM are as numerous as the people in these communities, and the ten erotic films in this series, spanning nine countries and six decades, explore various points of view on the sexual practice and art of fetish and kink, bondage and discipline, dominance and submission, sadism and masochism. Cinema is a fetish for the moving image, a form of roleplay for the actors, and an experience of voyeurism for the viewer, and Fetish Film Forum celebrates the power of film to realize humanity’s innermost desires.

Screenings include Secretary (2002), a whimsical comedy-drama about a woman who discovers the joys of submission; Belle de Jour (1967), starring Catherine Deneuve as a housewife who uses sex work to explore her sexual fantasies; Pleasure (2021), the story of a young woman who travels from Sweden to Los Angeles in search of porn stardom; Querelle (1982), Rainer Werner Fassbinder’s spectacular adaptation of the novel by Jean Genet; Shortbus (2006), an empowering whirlwind of polyamory by the director of Hedwig and the Angry Inch; In the Realm of the Senses (1976), an erotic art film inspired by the true story of geisha and sex worker Sada Abe; Cruising (1980), William Friedkin’s controversial slasher about a killer who targets gay men in NYC; Hellraiser (1987), Clive Barker’s horror classic involving leather-clad beings who relish suffering; The Handmaiden (2016), a twisty erotic thriller by internationally acclaimed director Park Chan-wook; and Cristiana: Devil Nun (1972), a campy nunsploitation romp for the holidays.

All screenings will be introduced by local film programmer John McDevitt, and they’ll be joined by numerous guest co-presenters throughout the year. Stay after the shows for free post-screening discussions to share your thoughts about these extraordinary films!

This series was programmed by John McDevitt in cooperation with the Leather Archives & Museum. John is a lifelong cinephile who currently works as Community Engagement Manager at FACETS, the non-profit film organization in Chicago’s Lincoln Park.

Secretary (2002) – Saturday, March 18 @ 7pm
Belle de Jour (1967) – Saturday, April 15 @ 7pm
Pleasure (2021) – Saturday, May 20 @ 7pm
Querelle (1982) – Saturday, June 17 @ 7pm
Shortbus (2006) – Saturday, July 15 @ 7pm
In the Realm of the Senses (1976) – Saturday, August 19 @ 7pm
Cruising (1980) – Saturday, September 16 @ 7pm
Hellraiser (1987) Saturday, October 21 @ 7pm
The Handmaiden (2016) – Saturday, November 18 @ 7pm
Cristiana: Devil Nun (1972) – Saturday, December 16 @ 7pm