NEW YORK CITY, HELLBENT FOR LEATHER Image

The Third Annual New York S/M Film Festival has just recently wrapped another successful year. The event was again a great draw for old-timers and new-comers alike, with this year’s festival creating a particularly convivial mingling of various communities. Between screenings, regular fixtures of the leather-S/M-fetish worlds mixed in the lobby with curious first-timers and general film devotees, and this year saw an increased participation by filmmakers whose works were featured in the festival.
Thor Stockman returned to give another encore-yet-completely-original and entertaining presentation, “The Return of the Good, The Bad, and the Ridiculous: S/M at the Movies.” The TES Novice Group kicked off another round of its annual series of monthly programs with “Introduction to the Scene.” And three evenings’ worth of films and videos unspooled at the Anthology Film Archives, culminating in a grand finale Wrap Party at Den of Inquity on the last evening of the festival – and a rather bleary-eyed brunch the next day.
Claes Lilja was on hand to present his crowd-pleasing documentary, “Beyond Vanilla,” and Phil Leirness, director of “Story of O: Untold Pleasures,” fielded a provocative range of questions from a sell-out audience. Also making appearances to support their short-form entries were Denny Daniels, David Ryan, Felice Shays and Sir D, while Mistress Dakota gave the introduction to “Seven Deadly Sins,” a work in which she is a most pleasing center of attention.
This year also marked the return of the opening night fundraising gala, held at The LURE, the infamous leather bar in Manhattan’s meatpacking district. Lolita Wolf once again presided over the festivities, reprising her critically-acclaimed role as the event’s officially designated Party Princess and taking the stage as special guest auctioneer. Joining her again in this popular and rather hair-raising portion of the evening was Phil (aka Boymeat), who co-starred as Auction Bottom, offering up vulnerable expanses of flesh in the interest of raising money for a good cause. With these boisterous activities as its centerpiece, this year’s event managed to whip up $1,756, with all proceeds going to benefit the National Coalition for Sexual Freedom and the Tom of Finland Foundation.
Here’s looking at next year’s festival at being an even bigger success.
For more post festival information, visit the New York S/M Film Festival website.

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